The former police chief of Virginia’s capital city is among those underscoring the economic benefits of a proposed resort, casino and entertainment complex that is on the ballot for Election Day next week.
The Richmond Grand Resort and Casino will not only offer “good jobs” but will also help lower crime, former Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham said in a full-throated endorsement of the business endeavor in a new video released Tuesday.
Citing FBI statistics as a predictor, Durham emphasized how “projects like this can see crime drop 3 to 11%.”
Watch Durham below.
The joint venture between Churchill Downs, Inc., and Urban One, Inc., expects that the newly created jobs’ salaries will average $55,000 in annual compensation including benefits. The entire project itself, which will use no public funds, incentives or tax breaks, should also generate at least $30 million in annual tax revenue for the City of Richmond.
During a press conference earlier this month, faith leaders announced their support for the Richmond Grand Resort and Casino and the many benefits it looks to deliver for the city, including workforce development, economic empowerment and expanded childcare access.
Like Durham, the multi-denominational faith coalition urged Richmonders to vote “yes” for good jobs, community investment and a stronger city.
“This fall, we can vote for economic empowerment, community investment, and family-sustaining jobs for more of our fellow Richmonders. We urge all Richmond residents to embrace this opportunity by voting YES for Richmond Grand,” the group wrote in an open letter. “We believe the proposed Richmond Grand will give more Richmonders an opportunity for a great job, deliver real investment in communities that are too often forgotten, and help create a stronger, safer city.”
Other key civil rights, economic development and labor unions in Richmond have also announced their support for Richmond Grand, including Richmond Branch NAACP, Virginia State Conference NAACP, Richmond Crusade for Voters, ChamberRVA, Richmond Region Tourism, The Metropolitan Business League, UNITE HERE, Richmond Building and Construction Trades Council, and nearly two-dozen local unions.
In August, Richmonders got their first look at new plans for the proposed Richmond Grand Resort & Casino, which would be located off I-95 in South Richmond.
Richmond Grand will include world-class features and attractions including:
A new 250-room luxury hotel, meticulously crafted to the demanding AAA Four Diamond standard for amenities, finishes, and features
Resort-style amenities including a luxury spa, state-of-the-art fitness center, and outdoor pools and cabanas to relax and lounge
A new 55-acre park in Southside for concerts, pickleball, festivals, farmer’s markets, and family activities
A spacious, high-end gaming floor with card games and table games like poker, blackjack, craps and roulette, a high-limit room for high rollers, fun and exciting slots of all prices, and an onsite sportsbook
Top-tier entertainment options in a state-of-the-art 3,000-seat concert venue to host national touring musicians, comedians, and shows
Fine dining options including local restaurants, breweries, and suppliers from RVA’s incredible food scene
Brand new high-tech film and audio production facilities to solidify Richmond’s position as a prime location for the film, television, and music industries, and to attract creative talent from around the world to RVA.
Event space to welcome conventions, sporting events, trade associations, and faith communities to Richmond.
“Richmonders recognize that this project is an opportunity for Richmond to invest in itself – an opportunity to have generational economic impact and use the $30 million generated every year towards creating a remarkable future with stronger schools and better services for their children, new opportunities for entrepreneurs, and hundreds of new jobs for their community,” Cathy Hughes, Founder and Chairperson of Urban One, Inc., said in a statement. “When Richmond votes yes, we say yes to good jobs, stronger schools, and services, and the opportunity to invest in Richmonders.”
Election Day this year is on Nov. 7.
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