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Hawaiian Gardens | Community News File

City Considers Second Offer to Build Card Club

September 10, 1997

Impatient with one developer's progress toward opening a casino in Hawaiian Gardens, city officials are considering a second developer's offer to build a card club that many hope will rescue the city from bankruptcy.

Peter Lynch, a former board member of the Commerce Club card parlor, gave the city a $500,000 check Friday to begin processing a city permit for what could be the city's second casino.

City officials say the money allowed them to make payroll Monday after they sent City Hall staff home Thursday without paychecks for the fourth time in three years.

An attorney for Lynch, who already holds a state gambling license, said the club could be running within six months--roughly the same projected opening date as one proposed by controversial developer Irving Moskowitz.

Moskowitz's proposal was approved by city voters in 1995 but has faced various obstacles, including lawsuits and state legislation that could yet block his casino. A spokesman for Moskowitz said Tuesday that Lynch's casino would have no impact on Moskowitz's plans.

City Atty. Julia Sylva said she is trying to work out a $2.5-million nonrefundable grant from Lynch for exclusive rights to negotiate a city gambling license.

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