An open letter to Butler National:   
    Okay Butler, you have the casino.
    Now prove you're actually a good thing for Dodge City.
    Pending a background check, Olathe-based Butler National Corp. will develop, build and manage a $87.5 million dollar state-owned casino in Dodge City. That's an estimated 654 new jobs — not including the influx of construction workers to build the complex west of town.
    It took the Kansas Lottery Gaming Facility Review Board an extra week to decide that Butler was the company to go with. This comes a week after the board originally said it wasn’t comfortable with the financial picture both companies presented last week.
    In that week, Butler was able to secure another chunk of money.
    All we're saying: Don't roll snake eyes on this one, friend.
    Butler owes it to the residents of Ford County to make this process as visible as possible. Not only will this boost the tax base in the area, huge projects have been hanging on every word, waiting for this casino decision.
    A Master Tourism Plan, a multi-million dollar special events center, not to mention an estimated $34 million worth of upgrades in roads, pipes and water just to make sure the casino can handle its predicted rush.
    The last thing Dodge City and Ford County residents need is the visual lesion of a half-completed casino gathering weeds on a piece of land right next to U.S. Highway 50.
    This casino has the potential to finally revitalize a Dodge City that has been steadily waning in national popularity. This casino has the potential to boost tourism and create a more socially-acceptable version of the blazing guns and boozy broads reputation that made us famous.
    But it's only potential.
    Our city and state leaders have given you — and your local partner Boot Hill Gaming — the nod. You've promised the Mariah Fund, a not-for-profit that takes some of your revenues and turns them around for tourism grants.
    We're opening our doors to you, for better or worse. You'll be making what amounts to one of the largest single financial boosts in Dodge's history. We're looking to you to make Dodge City a success in Kansas gambling. That's why we're calling on you to stick to your rather impressive proposal.
    Oh, and by the way... Good luck.
    This is a tough table.