NATIONAL GAMBLING IMPACT STUDY COMMISSION
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: Mr. Jameson.
MR. JAMESON: Thank you, members of the committee.
If you have this handout that I distributed to you, you'll know where I'm from, Cecil County, Maryland. It has a little map there, and we're in the top right-hand corner of the state.
I'd like to tell you that I'm a born again Christian, and that I believe in Jesus Christ, and that gambling is a waste of money and, therefore, prohibited by my faith because of stewardship.
I'm a United Methodist pastor, and I bring you greetings from our Bishop, Peter Weaver, and the Board of Church and Society of the Peninsula Delaware Annual Conference, of which I am a member, and I'm a resident of Cecil County, Maryland, and I also bring you greetings from our Cecil County commissioners.
On the second page of the document which I've distributed, there's a letter from the county commissioners greeting you and also a resolution that they would like to provide for your group on the last two pages.
I'm here because I'm besieged. We won in 1995. We won in 1996, and we won in 1997 to prevent gambling interests from coming into our county and into our state, and I've highlighted all of the folks that have spoken before who are my dear friends, and you can see a little bit of red there, and very honestly, I love those people, but I don't want to see them anymore because I'm tired of having to fight this fight.
Casino America has come into Cecil County and has spent so much money that the preachers and the Christian people there can hardly keep up with these people. They've made all kinds of promises. They've gone into on a local level -- it used to be that you could just go down to Annapolis and fight this on a state level, but they've come into our neighborhoods now.
They're giving money to people, such as the Elkton Little League, gave them $500 this week and sent a press release to the local paper. They shuttled people into Annapolis when we had hearings in the spring. They've been having secret meetings with our town council.
You know, we're the last -- this is proven because the Maryland Open Meetings Compliance Board has made a ruling on this -- at the August 5th meeting that they had with the town council it was against the law.
So this is something that it is just hard to fight these guys off. This morning when my wife and I went for a walk, we were attacked by a dog, and I told the lady who owned the dog, I said, "Hold your dog. Put a leash on your dog."
Commission, I'd like to ask you: please, put a leash on this dog. Keep them out of Cecil County. Get some kind of recommendation to the nation's legislators and them to put a leash on this dog and please keep them out of Cecil County.
I have a gift for Mrs. James. This is a video blackjack game that was made, ages five and up. I want you to have this.
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: I think we've already determined that the Commissioners cannot receive gifts, and if we receive them we can't use them.
MR. JAMESON: I got this at K-Mart, and it's by Caesar's Palace, and it says "ages 5 and up."
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: We can receive them, we just can't use them.