JAMUL INDIAN VILLAGE – AUGUST NEWSLETTER
Special Feature on the Benefits of Gaming Facility
Dear Community Members,
This month the Jamul Indian Village Tribal Council submitted a special feature to the San Diego Union-Tribune. We thank the publication and its editorial leadership for the opportunity to share our thoughts on the benefits of the Hollywood Casino-Jamul San Diego. We want to make sure you had a chance to see what we wrote:
The new Hollywood Casino, situated upon the sovereign land of the Jamul Indian Village, will open soon. We are a federally recognized Native American tribe in east San Diego County, one of 13 bands of the Kumeyaay Nation that can trace our heritage back 12,000 years. At one point in time, this entire valley belonged to the Kumeyaay. The journey to this current place and time has been long and at times difficult.
For more than 20 years, my tribe has fought to achieve our dreams of economic independence as other tribes in San Diego County have done. We wish to pursue the American Dream to the best of our ability and for the sake of our people.
In 1999, we signed a tribal-state compact with the California government. Many other tribes did the same, all with a shared vision of economic self-sufficiency and an improved life for tribal members. Our compact permits gaming of limited size and scope under rigorous, comprehensive oversight by the tribe, state and federal agencies on our trust land.
The compact and the current project were completed despite years of unsuccessful legal challenges. Opponents of our project continue to object, despite a project that was thoughtfully designed to blend with its surroundings and history, despite agreements with the state and county government to pursue the project, despite the commitment of my tribe to make numerous road improvements, and despite meaningful improvements to fire and life safety services that will benefit Jamul and neighboring communities.
The most recent opponents expressed concerns centered on safety in regards to traffic and fire. As longtime residents of the region, we too recognize the challenges and concerns of Highway 94. As neighbors, we envisioned that our project would reap rewards and benefits beyond our tribal boundaries.
We have spent 25 years working on plans and solutions intended to address traffic issues. Our tribe has committed approximately $20 million toward road improvements identified by the California Department of Transportation. We have agreed to an additional $3.7 million in road improvements requested by the County of San Diego as part of our intergovernmental agreement signed in April. These improvements, which have already begun with the addition of a traffic signal on Highway 94 directly in front of the casino, will continue in planned phases.
We absolutely remain committed to safety and are providing significant funds that include annual contributions to public, fire and life safety services. As a result, a newly purchased ladder truck and an additional pumper truck will operate out of Fire Station 36 in Jamul to respond to emergencies throughout the region. Both vehicles will be staffed with full-time paramedics.
Safety measures have included multiple training exercises with CalFire Station 36 and supporting stations, as well as walk-throughs with Mercy Ambulance to familiarize first responders with the property. Communications testing will also continue to ensure emergency response radios work properly throughout the property. In addition to our full-time, on-site sheriff’s deputy, we are examining the use of additional law enforcement support through the grand opening and on an as-needed, ongoing basis.
Going forward, our tribe will contribute more than $2.75 million annually to the county for fire, life safety and public safety over the next 20 years. This commitment will allow for the increased staffing of CalFire Station 36 to seven full-time firefighters and provide for the transfer of two full-time positions to the Deerhorn Valley station.
Hollywood Casino is not intended to solely serve the tribe. This facility has already created over 1,500 construction jobs and 1,000 permanent jobs, and will present new opportunities for local businesses, resulting in significant contributions to the overall economy of the area, county and region.
The road to success, like most things in life, is not easy. We have always been motivated by a dream of better lives for ourselves and for those with whom we share this land. With the opening of Hollywood Casino, one journey will end and a new one will begin.
We step forward eagerly and optimistically, and hope that our neighbors will join us.
Thank you for taking the time to read our perspective.
Jamul Indian Village Tribal Council
JIV Signs Tribal-State Gaming Compact with State
We’re excited to announce that Governor Brown signed a tribal-state Gaming Compact between the State of California and the JIV. The compact signed this month affirms JIV’s dedicated partnership and government-to-government relationship with the State.
“JIV is very grateful to Governor Brown for making this agreement possible. The compact creates an economic environment that allows the Tribe to transition to self-sufficiency and to contribute to other Tribes, the community and local government,” Jamul Indian Village Chairwoman Erica Pinto told members of the press.
The compact term is 25 years and, among other things, includes contributions to protect wildlife and habitat. The compact also provides incentives that will allow the Tribe to continue to partner with and invest in the local community.
“Through this compact, JIV reaffirms its commitment to working with the County on fire service, law enforcement and road improvements,” said Chairwoman Pinto. “The Tribe also seeks to develop projects designed to preserve historical buildings, landmarks and objects of cultural significance that provide a mutual benefit to the Tribe and the local community.”
JIV shared with the press that it has persevered for more than 15 years to develop this casino project on its federally recognized reservation in East County, San Diego. Through the resilience of tribal elders, tribal council and partners, Hollywood Casino Jamul-San Diego is expected to open this summer and the Tribe looks forward to being able to improve the health, safety and general welfare of its members.
Restaurant Feature: Ruby’s Dinette
Ruby’s Dinette will bring its American Diner experience to Hollywood Casino Jamul-San Diego. Located in the food court, guests will be able to enjoy their great burgers, fries, and world famous shakes. In addition to the crowd favorites, Ruby’s will also have salads, sandwiches, homemade clam chowder, and much more.
Ruby’s Diners are aesthetically designed after American Diners of the Swing Era. While basic decor remains the same for every Diner, creative touches are added to many Ruby’s Diners by developing modified themes to fit the local area.
Ruby’s Diner currently has 35 family-friendly locations, including three successful San Diego locations: Carlsbad, Oceanside, and Mission Valley Mall. The operators are excited to be part of the development and growth of a city where we have a loyal fan base.
Please visit the Ruby’s Diner website for more information.
Acorns to Oaks Celebrates Traditions with Fishing Trip
Back by popular demand, Acorns to Oaks hosted a fishing trip at Lower Otay Reservoir in East County, San Diego. Young acorns brought their fishing rods from the event last year and built upon the skills they learned from the last outing.
As with other adventures hosted by Acorns to Oaks, organizers Chairwoman Pinto and Executive Councilmember Chris Pinto aim to instill a sense of community in the Tribe’s younger generation.
“We really enjoy seeing the excitement on the kids’ faces when we take them out for weekend trips,” said Executive Councilmember Pinto. “They are having fun and building strong bonds with their fellow Tribal Members. This goes a long way in preserving culture and community.”
JIV Tribal Members were excited to be joined by neighboring Tribal Members from the Campo Band of Diegueno Mission Indians and La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians. The kids are already asking about next year!