Archive for the ‘Willa Johnson’ Category

Will Brad Engage? Or Will He Fiddle While Largely African American N.E. OKC Goes Down the Tubes?

June 1, 2008

While officials like Shelton, Congresswoman Mary Fallin, Mayor Mick Cornett and County Commissioner Ray Vaughan are aggressively publicly opposing the casino, at least two officials are conspicuous in their silence: Gov. Brad Henry and County Commissioner Willa Johnson.

The controversy surrounding the proposed Shawnee Tribe’s casino in northeast Oklahoma City is heating up.

It’s rumored that there will be a Tuesday night town meeting of citizens whose homes and businesses in the area surrounding Remington Park will be harmed if construction of the casino is allowed to move forward. Remington Park, who most observers believe will go bankrupt if the casino begins operation, sits in State Rep. Mike Shelton’s house district 97. Shelton is publicly calling on citizens to voice their concerns to the BIA before the Friday deadline.

While officials like Shelton, Congresswoman Mary Fallin, Mayor Mick Cornett and County Commissioner Ray Vaughan are aggressively publicly opposing the casino, at least two officials are conspicuous in their silence: Gov. Brad Henry and County Commissioner Willa Johnson.

Henry is rumored to be meeting with agricultural interests regarding the track this week. When the casino becomes operational, the subsequent bankruptcy of Remington Park will kill the horse breeding industry in Oklahoma according to a report filed by News9’s Rusty Surrette Friday. The race track says 25,000 Oklahoma jobs will be lost.

The BIA’s 30-day comment period closes Friday, and Henry’s painfully slow reaction to take a position, given his chummy relationship with a key Shawnee Tribe official, has given rise to speculation the governor will either sit this issue out or intervene on behalf of the tribe, which will enrage Oklahomans and elected officials from both parties. If Henry were to go on record in opposition to the casino, it would carry great weight with the BIA, and insiders tell OKPNS that business leaders and other officials are steamed at the governor, who always goes to great lengths to avoid taking positions on tough issues.

Developing…….

Related:

The Casino and Mr. Chicken