Tribal racino backers kick off referendum campaign

Portland, Maine (AP) 9-07

A referendum group calling itself “Yes on Question 1” kicked off its campaign September 24th to win passage of a ballot question that would allow the Passamaquoddy Tribe to build a racetrack casino in Washington County.

Supporters say a harness-racing and slots facility would not only help the tribe, but also provide government revenue and jobs for Washington County.

“This harness-racing facility is for the citizens of Washington County and for all Mainers,” said Indian Township Tribal Gov. William Nicholas.

With the revenue, the tribe could fund programs including “health care for our young and elderly, education for our kids,” he said.

“Profits from Indian gaming can make a profound difference in the tribe’s ability to care for itself and its future,” added Pleasant Point Tribal Chief Richard Phillips-Doyle.

As part of the campaign, supporters are launching a Web site –

Voters on Nov. 6 also will decide whether to lengthen legislative term limits, from four two-year terms to six, and whether to approve three bond questions.