Interview with Morongo Band chairman on anniversary of casino

The Morongo Casino Resort & Spa. Photo from Facebook

The Riverside Press-Enterprise interviews Robert Martin, the chairman of the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, about the benefits of the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa:
Q. How has the opening of the $250 million resort property benefited the Morongo?

A. It’s been a huge benefit, putting our tribe on the road to self-reliance and self-sufficiency. It has enabled us to provide health care, housing, infrastructure, electricity, clean water, public safety and educational programs to our people, including our youth and our elders.

We were able to launch the Morongo School, the first college preparatory academy of its kind on an Indian reservation; and the tribe pays for 100 percent of all college costs for our members regardless of age.

The casino-resort also empowered us to develop a diverse array of business enterprises in manufacturing, health care, recreation, tourism, dining and agriculture. These ventures range from the Arrowhead bottling plant on our reservation to almond farms in central California to a 17,000-bed network of skilled-nursing facilities in 10 states.

We’re also proud about having the first In-N-Out restaurant on a U.S. Indian reservation and a Taco Bell on the way. And in 2010, we acquired a struggling golf course in Beaumont and rejuvenated it into the Morongo Golf Club at Tukwet Canyon to provide a great, new recreational amenity for our guests and the community.

Q. How has it benefited the region as a whole?

A. Our operations generate an estimated $3 billion a year in economic activity, and we’ve contributed about half a billion dollars in taxes and compact revenue to the state, which helps fund important public services.

Morongo employs nearly 3,000 people. We have also worked closely with the county and our neighbors on regional projects, like the I-10 bypass. Most importantly, we have been able to live our values by sharing with others.

Get the Story:
MORONGO: Chairman talks about 'good times' at Cabazon resort (The Riverside Press-Enterprise 12/16)

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Morongo Band celebrates 10th birthday of $250M gaming facility (12/10)

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