In the third occasion on which a referendum on the construction of a casino has been held in Montreal, residents have voted against the motion. Despite the projected $50 million profit intake for the new casino, 50.7% voted against its construction.
The vote was close, as 822 of 1668 voters were actually in favour of the idea. The 10 council chiefs who looked forward to the deal are disappointed with the result, as just 24 votes could have swayed the decision.
“We’re looking to become less dependent on financial dollars coming from federal and provincial governments”, says Chief Mike Delisle Jr.
Bringing in $50 million, the new casino would have given local aboriginal groups more financial freedom from the Canadian government. Most local chiefs (10 out of 11) were supportive of the idea; however, the local community was split down the middle.
Most of the opposition came from local students, who were not old enough to vote on the referendum. So, they staged protests in order to sway public opinion. Over 125 students showed up to a march against the new casino while 50 protested outside the polls on the day of the referendum.