Letter to the Editor
As we approach the November 2 General Election, Wild Rose Casino & Resort has worked with our non-profit gaming license holder, Palo Alto County Gaming Development Corporation (PACGDC), to promote awareness of the gaming referendum. Palo Alto County voters will be asked to approve continued gaming operations in the county by voting "YES" to a ballot measure. In the state of Iowa, an approval by a local vote is required every eight years. Although Wild Rose has not reached an eight year mark in our operations, this approval is done on an eight year cycle across all Iowa counties with gaming.
A vote "Yes" to continued gaming operations in Palo Alto County means continued economic benefits to its residents and its communities.
When Wild Rose began operations in 2006, the 114,000 square foot facility created a stark contrast to the surrounding country side of corn and beans. Since then, our successful business venture has generated revenues that have funded over $4.8 million dollars in grants distributed through PACGDC in Palo Alto County. These grants represent 6% of gaming revenues; a percentage that is twice the norm of 3%, and is based on a separate contractual agreement that runs through March 2014.
A second piece of the economic equation is the jobs generated by Wild Rose. There are approximately 275 people, mostly life-long local residents of the area, who are committed to its success and are the face of Wild Rose. It is their genuine Midwestern hospitality that makes Wild Rose a memorable entertainment experience. Palo Alto County and the surrounding communities have been the beneficiaries as these families with the purchasing power of the $7 million dollars annually in payroll and benefits buy goods and services.
Other economic benefits arise from Wild Rose. These include tax payments to local, state and federal government that exceed $7 million dollars annually, the increased tourism in the county, and Wild Rose's participation in the Iowa First Program that favors Iowa vendors.
As you complete your ballot, look for the Gaming Referendum that is marked "Wild Rose Casino & Resort" and vote "YES" to continued gaming in Palo Alto County.
(signed) Steve Cody, Rose Reit
Beth Thompson Elman