Casino donates nearly $2 million - WNEM TV 5

Casino donates nearly $2 million

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ISABELLA COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

A Mid-Michigan casino showered hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash on local governmental agencies.

The Saginaw Chippewa Tribe bestowed the money from profits it made in the past six months at the Soaring Eagle Casino in Mount Pleasant.  

One-by-one, government agencies and school districts thanked the Saginaw Chippewa Tribe for their bi-annual allocations Thursday morning. The tribe handed out nearly $2 million. That's two percent of its profits over six months at the Soaring Eagle Casino. 

Mount Pleasant Public Schools received the largest allocation, receiving more than $457,000.

"It affords us the ability to do some things in our classrooms with our students that we otherwise couldn't afford to do with our general fund. We're very grateful for this," Michael Pung said.

The Shepherd public school district got $255,000.

"I know there are teachers waiting on their grant request for funding because many of them are teacher-generated and they are so grateful when something they really wanted to do for their students is funded," Claire Bunker said.

The city of Mount Pleasant received the largest denomination for governmental agencies, receiving nearly $420,000.

Sharon Tilmann said that money will go toward services for youth, law enforcement, infrastructure and the airport.

Deerfield Township received $12,000, which should make motorists happy there.

"We'll probably use this on our road budget," Walter Nelson said.

The tribal spokesman said the twice-yearly event is a source of pride for them.

"It's just an exciting opportunity to share with those people who make our business possible," Frank Cloutier said.

Friday, the tribe will make its semi-annual donations to governmental agencies located near the Saganing Eagle Casino in Arenac County. 

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