East Bay News
Richmond City Council votes to stop plans for casino
RICHMOND, Calif. (KGO) -- The hard-fought battle over whether to turn a prime piece of Richmond real estate into an Indian gaming resort came to an end Tuesday night. The City Council voted against building a casino on Pt. Molate. But as one fight ends, it appears another one begins.
The quiet point on the water's edge has been at the center of a heated real estate battle that stretched on for more than six years. But Tuesday, it took one final City Council vote, and another 5-hour debate, to seal Pt. Molate's fate -- there will be no mega casino there, which means now a new fight over what should replace it begins.
"We had hoped something was going to happen out here. We've been waiting for 10 years and they keep going back and forth and back and forth and change their mind," said Eric Johnson who owns a yacht harbor on Pt. Molate. He is tired of waiting for a transformation on the abandoned Navy base.
His buddy, Willie Agnew, is Pt. Molate's caretaker. He is tired of waiting for much needed jobs in this city.
"I'm 78 years old. There's casinos all around. I've been to three in my whole life," said Agnew. "So if they build one here in my backyard that doesn't mean I'm going to go gamble off my child support money, or nothing."
On both sides of the fight there are opposite views for what Pt. Molate should be.
"I've been here for 10 years and nobody has helped anything out here," said Johnson.
And that debate still goes on between casino backers and the environmentalists who twice sued to protect the 412-acre piece of shoreline.
"We start over. We're not going anywhere. We don't quit," said Robert Cheasty, president of Citizens for Eastshore Parks. "We're going to make this a beautiful site and protect it and do what we can."
The developer now has 120 days to come up with a plan for Pt. Molate -- a plan that does not include a casino.
"What I want to see is something that truly reflects the image of a Richmond in transition, of a Richmond on the rise," said Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin.
"I want it to be whatever is the best for the city," said Agnew.
That may be the only thing everyone agrees on.
richmond, east bay news, cecilia vega
- SF officials prepare for 102nd Bay to Breakers race
- Albany residents protest return of Occupy activists
- Suspicious package in Livermore prompts evacuation
- Konig wins 7th stage, van Garderen retains lead
- Pacers knock out Knicks with 106-99 win in Game 6
- Milone's long skid ends as A's beat Royals
- Chatwood leads Rockies past Giants 10-2
- Teen dies after refusing to give iPad to thieves
- Up to 60 injured after car drives into Va. parade
- San Jose man arrested for alleged road rage attack
- Miami Heat player surprises student at prom
- abcnews: Men Struggle With Wives' Breast Cancer
- roundup: America's Cup race; Murder charges
- weather: Bay Area weather forecast for Sunday
Most Viewed StoriesMost Viewed VideoMost Viewed Photos