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Proposed Lansing casino faces key hurdle tonight

The Lansing city council has several items dealing with the casino project on its agenda tonight.

All the items must pass for the $245 million project to move forward.

City council president Brian Jeffries last week questioned if the city is giving up too much in the deal with the Sault Ste Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians and a group of local investors.

The proposal has drawn opposition from critics of casino gambling., other tribes that operate casinos, as well as the governor and state attorney general. 

But the proposal is supported by many Lansing business interests.  They say a casino will bring jobs and increased tourism. 

However, after the city council votes, the casino project still faces many other hurdles, including a fight to win federal approval and many expected lawsuits.   

The Sault Ste Marie is also planning to vote this Spring on the project.  Some tribe members are not happy with how the tribe's executive board plans to divide up revenues from the casino.  

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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