The Glendale City Council voted to oppose a bill moving through Congress that would block the Tohono O’odham Nation from building a casino near the Westgate Entertainment District.
The 4-3 vote signifies a major shift for a city embroiled in lawsuits with the tribe and long opposed to even talking to the tribe’s leaders. The Southern Arizona-based tribe announced plans in 2009 to build a casino on a county island near 95th and Northern Avenues.
City leaders have asserted that the operation would compete with Westgate and surrounding businesses, drain sales-tax revenue and prompt more demand for city services. But a council majority recently directed Glendale staff to begin negotiating with the tribe, as four council members consider a casino and resort a potential boon for the economy.