Both Wootan and Eric Larsen, director of marketing for the Silver Reef Casino, gave presentations about the economic benefits casinos provide, not only to the tribes but also to the rest of Whatcom County.
Many of the questions for Larsen
were related to the Silver Reef casino's growth.The casino is currently in its third phase of expansion, a $24 million project that includes a six-story hotel and a fourth restaurant.When the third expansion phase is completed, the casino will have 135,000 square feet of space and employ 475 people, making it one of the top employers in the county.Nooksack Casino currently employs about 280 people.Larsen
was asked about the growing traffic congestion on Slater Road and Haxton Way.He
said the company is working with the state to improve those roads to ease the congestion."We are aware the growth of the casino is creating more traffic in the area and we want to address the problem," Larsen
said.Reach Dave Gallagher at 715-2269 or dave.gallagher@belling hamherald.com.