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Oster Resigns From Anti-Casino Leadership, Replaced By Gov. Almond

Chairman of the group Save Our State, Richard Oster, resigned from his position. A former Cookson Americ chief executive officer said a split over philosophy made him leave the group.

The group, opposed to the Narradansett Indian-Harrah's casino, most of the members are against casino, but Oster viewed the ballot question that would change the state Constitution in Rhode Island.

Oster said, "My view has always been that if there is to be a casino there should be competitive bidding."

To replace Oster from the position he left behind, former Gov. Lincoln C. Almond was called yesterday, August 4, to take over the leadership of the group. Almond is known as opponent of a casino since his eight years as governor from 1995-2003.

Almond acknowledged the invitation and said, "They have talked to me and sent me some materials in the past two or three days. I certainly don't think a casino is going to be good for the economy, or socially, for the state."

Almond added, "I think we have too much gambling already. Rhode Islanders like to gamble and I think our addiction rate is much higher than the national average. It hurts families."

Oster on the other hand, he may be resigned from his former group, but that didn't stop him from fighting casinos he said. He plans to start another group to oppose the tribe's casino. The group will be called "No Bid, No Deal."