For Immediate Release
DATE: June 12, 2023
June 12, 2023 – SALEM, Ore.— New data shows that a substantial majority of Salem and Keizer-area residents support the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indian’s plans to build an entertainment property in North Salem. According to a recent poll conducted by DHM Research, 66% of residents support the Salem Casino Project, including nearly every demographic group. North and northeast Salem residents are among the most supportive of the project. Furthermore, resident support for the project is higher than similar studies conducted in 2017 (57% support) and 2021 (64% support).
The 180,800-square-foot entertainment, gaming and hotel facility is estimated to bring $231 million in gross revenue. Residents surveyed are particularly optimistic about the 1,200 full-time permanent living-wage jobs the project will bring to Salem. In addition, during the two-year construction phase, the project will generate about 2,300 jobs and $141 million in wages, stimulate $492 million in economic impact and produce $54 million in indirect purchases or spending through supply chains in the local economy.
Those surveyed also support the project’s unprecedented revenue-sharing agreement that will benefit the state and local government and every participating Tribe. In its gaming proposal, the Siletz Tribe is committing to distribute 25% of the net revenue to State and local governments like the City of Salem, and 50% of the net revenue to the other eight Oregon Tribes to support community-based projects and programs.
“We have a unique opportunity to create thousands of jobs, generate millions in economic growth in Salem and uplift the lives of Tribal communities across Oregon,” said Dee Pigsley, Tribal Council Chairman, The Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians. “The Tribe is grateful for the deep and consistent support the Salem and Keizer community has shown for the Siletz Casino Project, especially on the heels of Governor Kotek’s statements opposing all expansion of tribal gaming.”
In addition, respondents support the world-class entertainment and tourism the project will bring to Salem. Project plans include a 180,800 square foot casino with 2,000 gaming devices and 45 table games. The property will also feature a 4-star full-service hotel with 500 rooms, 64,000+ square foot multi-purpose event center, pool, spa, plentiful dining options, nightclub and sports bar.
Another reason those surveyed support the project is the significant opportunity to support services for tribal members and the Salem community. The Siletz Tribe plans to use the project’s revenue to fund child welfare services, health clinics and educational programs for tribal members. Additionally, plans include significant modernizations to the roads, public transportation and water systems surrounding the property and the construction of affordable housing units in the area. Serving as an anchor development, the property will also drive additional investment in North Salem. The facility will be built on the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indian’s trust property, located off Interstate 5, exit 258, Portland Road.
“It’s clear there is enthusiasm in the community for the casino project. We look forward to entering into good faith negotiations with the governor to move this project forward,” Pigsley said.
Governor Kotek’s recent opposition to any expansion of tribal gaming had little effect on the opinion of Salem residents. An overwhelming majority (69%) of residents believe Kotek’s position on gaming is a poor reason to oppose the project.
Support in the Salem community has not wavered since the project was initially announced. In fact, support for the project has increased from 57% in 2021 to 66% in 2023. Meanwhile, opposition for the project has fallen to just 30% of area residents.
To learn more about the federal authorization timeline see: https://www.siletz.org/fact-sheet-siletz-casino-project-authorization-timeline/
From April 20 – 26, 2023, DHM Research conducted a survey of registered voters in Salem and Keizer. The purpose of the survey was to assess familiarity with and support for the Siletz Casino Project over time, including messaging about the project.
About the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians
The Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians is a confederation of many different tribes of western Oregon. In the 1800s, Siletz ancestors were removed from their homelands and relocated to the Siletz Reservation on the coast. While the Siletz Tribe’s headquarters is located in Siletz, Oregon, the Tribe has operated government offices in Salem, Portland, Eugene, Lincoln City and Siletz for over 40 years. To find out more about the project, visit www.siletz.org.
DHM Research has been providing opinion research and consultation throughout the Pacific Northwest and other regions of the United States for over 40 years. The firm is nonpartisan and independent and specializes in research projects to support public policy making.