This coming November 7, our ballot will include a question regarding a yes or no vote to approve or disapprove of a proposal to build a casino in Old Orchard Beach. What? Really? Has Old Orchard Beach become the whipping boy for easy exploitation?

Will our state and local political leaders fall for the inflated predictions of jobs and taxes while residents of our town and surrounding towns become unable to carry on normal activities — like driving to doctors or groecry stores for treatment? OOB becomes a nightmare to drive to main arteries during the “season,” but a casino would be a year-round proposition. And let’s face it, casino owners become billionaires by transferring money from their so-called “guests” to their private coffers. Just what our town (or state) needs.

But my question is why weren’t we given heads up about these “proposals” earlier, so we could organize a campaign to prevent the process from rolling over us? If it wasn’t for the Portland Press October 6 front page article, how and when would we know about the impending potential disaster? The article by Scott Thistele is an outstanding piece of journalism and should be a must-read by anyone — especially OOB residents.

The reporter includes an interview with one of our council members who intimated that although a casino might cause hardship for OOB, it might get approval votes from area voters bordering OOB, since they might derive benefits from the increased traffic while not directly suffering the kind of negative consequences our town would. This is not the kind of attitude we need from our leadership!

So fellow townsfolk. Beware of paid signature gatherers touting the casino. Stick up for our town.  Vote against the casino question whenever you vote.

Fred Dolgon

Old Orchard Beach