Tight-fisted casinos need to loosen up


To the editor:

Your Friday article, "All lit up, but no one to serve," says Indian gaming and the recession have turned Reno into an afterthought for some gamblers. While this is true, there are several other reasons why gamblers don't make the trip to Reno.

One is that the casinos have reduced the return on the games. When people lose faster, they don't get as much entertainment out of their dollar, and it is just not worth traveling to play for a few hours and lose all your money.

Most people who go to Reno have a budget for gambling. When it is gone, they may gamble a little bit more. However, when they get home, they are unhappy that they spent more than they planned, and they don't go back. By allowing players to play longer at games that return a higher percentage, the casinos might actually make more money -- the people would have a good time and would return more often.

Another reason business is down: The casinos have cut back on comps and promotions. I remember checking in when a hotel stopped giving RFB -- complimentary room, food and beverages -- to most of its customers. As I was in line to check in, I heard people complaining that they always had RFB, and they were upset. Many said they would not be back.

When you have competition that is more convenient, you have to do more to make it worth the effort to travel farther. If a supermarket has no competition within a 50-mile radius but hears that another market will open closer to most of the shoppers, it can't raise its prices. It has to try to increase sales with promotions.

What is happening in Reno will happen in Las Vegas soon.

Thomas Jones

LAS VEGAS

Homeowner associations

To the editor:

The most important part of the very interesting commentary by Jonathan Friedrich and Ian Dixon ("Seeking to protect homeowners," Sunday) came at the very end, when they made mention of the all-powerful Community Association Institute. It is controlled by homeowner association attorneys, one of whom handles more than 200 associations himself. These attorneys are then locked arm in arm with each other in construction-defect litigation.

A resident complaint to the state homeowners association ombudsman takes an average of three to four months to get to a hearing. Although no attorney is needed, should an HOA board opt to hire one, the complaining resident then needs to hire one or give up the complaint unless he wishes to represent himself against a lawyer -- a cute trick to make a senior quit. At least that is the way it worked for some time in Sun City Anthem between 2006 and 2007.

The residents of Nevada certainly do need a strong and powerful voice in the Legislature because the HOA ombudsman is a failure. The Community Association Institute is a joke, too. The legislation of interest to the CAI doesn't benefit the homeowner -- it benefits the common elements.

The state Real Estate Division seems to be taking orders from those same powerful puppeteers. If you were to check the arbitration decisions, it is very rare that homeowners win, and even when they do, the fees are astronomical. Can seniors or people on a fixed income pay several thousand dollars to settle a dispute with their boards? Is that the idea to make to problem go away?

Who is going to speak for the 11,000-plus seniors on the hill in Henderson, and the 3,000-plus other associations across the state? It's about time someone did, and so far the lawyers are only speaking for their bank accounts.

R. Goodman

HENDERSON

Fair game

To the editor:

In response to Ron Moers' Friday letter to the editor ("Despicable attacks"), which was critical of Vegasland columnist Doug Elfman's interview with comedian Bill Maher:

I and many people I know find Mr. Maher hilarious and mostly on the money with his comments and views. He has been critical of both Republicans and Democrats, though most of his criticism is of the neocon extreme right wing. He has said in the past that he'd be a Republican "if the Republicans would be Republicans."

Recently the Review-Journal printed a commentary by Fox News host Bill O'Reilly that whined about the "liberal media" picking on GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin after the election. It was one of the many extreme right-wing commentaries that are a constant in the Las Vegas Republican-Journal, er, Review-Journal.

If Mr. Moers and Mr. O'Reilly are so upset about the treatment of Gov. Palin by political satirists and commentators, then perhaps she should quit teeing the ball up for them with interviews and news conferences that expose her continual, mind-numbing ignorance of national and global issues. She spoke to the media more often in the two weeks after the election than in the three months before the election.

Joe Rodak

LAS VEGAS

 

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