Sachem Great Elk Dancer

Sachem Great Elk Dancer

Grand Sachem Great Elk Dancer For His Elk Nation - Hereditary Chief of the Notoweega Nation

Website URL: http://https://www.facebook.com/dancing.elk.3

Senate approves bill banning Internet cafes in Ohio

By DEBRA TOBIN Logan Daily News Reporter This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

LOGAN — “These are tribal businesses,” said Red Door Internet Café owner Marshal Lucas “Dancing Elk” on Wednesday. “The state has no right to regulate or has no jurisdictional powers over Indian trade.”

These strong words were spoken by Elk when he received news that the Ohio Senate approved a bill designed to put all of Ohio’s Internet cafés out of business.

“According to the Indian Gaming Act, the state has no jurisdiction and it’s a federal matter. I’m going to continue to operate on my behalf, the tribe’s behalf and tribe’s people’s behalf,” Elk noted. Ohio is home to some 800 plus Internet café businesses, which could soon be forced to close their doors. Elk has proclaimed to keep his storefront open regardless.

“To molest my commerce has been an ongoing violation of the Greenville Treaty and the U.S. Constitution,” Elk stated. “Basically it’s been an ongoing affair and I’m willing to stand by.” Elk is adamant in regard to the government trying to regulate the Internet café businesses and vows not to go down without a fight.

“I’m going to call my attorney and see where we stand,” he said.

Throughout the course of his business, Elk feels he’s been a target not only from the state, but also local government. His problems began when he relocated Red Door from his Spring Street address to 54 E. Main St., a building owned by Mike Nihiser.

Nihiser’s building was not in compliance with the Ohio Department of Commerce and after months of fighting, Elk was forced to move once again. He is now located at 44 E. Main St., in a building owned by Eastgate Properties.

However, that building now comes under attack, as the building owner has not yet applied for a change of use permit from the Ohio Department of Commerce. In a letter dated April 17 to the property owner, Logan Fire Chief Brian Robertson gave a 45-day notice to Eastgate Properties to apply for the change of use.

In addition to these problems, Elk now faces having his business closed once Gov. John Kasich signs the bill that was approved by the Senate on Wednesday.

Supporters of the bill to ban Internet café businesses have argued that the 800 plus cafes operating throughout the state are conducting illegal gambling operations, and Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and other law enforcement refer to the Internet cafes as a home to other illegal activity such as money laundering.

The bill was approved 27 to 6, and was not approved with an emergency clause, meaning café operators and software providers could attempt to collect signatures for an effort to overturn the bill. Some argue the state should regulate the businesses and collect taxes and fees rather than close them down.

Sen. John Eklund (R — Chardon) said they are all illegal gambling under the current law. Also before the House is a one-year extension of the moratorium on the opening of new Internet cafes, and more extensive registration requirements for owners who must file with the attorney general’s office, and is expected to be approved.

“Basically, laws are laws and our responsibility is to make sure they are followed,” said Logan City Mayor Martin Irvine.

The Red Door is the only Internet café within the city of Logan. This bill will not affect the Logan Skilled Games on Spring Street.


Red Door Internet Cafe opens for business

By DEBRA TOBIN Logan Daily News Reporter This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

LOGAN — The Red Door Internet Café is now open for business. The store opened Wednesday for its first full day of business at 54 E. Main St. in downtown Logan.

“We’ve had a lot of customers who have been waiting for us to open and today will be our first full day,” said owner Dancing Elk.

Customers who frequent the business can purchase Internet time on 11 new machines or access the business website, (link removed), from the comfort of their homes and play one or all 25 sweepstake games.

In order to play, participants must be over the age of 18 and show proof of age. Once customers purchase Internet time at the business, they can access the sweepstakes games on the website with their chosen ID and password. Time can be purchased in dollar increments, according to Dancing Elk. Red Door will be open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to midnight.

“We are just taking it one step at a time,” he said. “We have the latest up-to-date machines and are providing the convenience of using the machines here or accessing the website from home.” The new establishment has a sitting area for customers to relax with wireless access, as well as a snack area and sweepstake machines.

Phone cards also can be purchased, which give 10 minutes of phone time, and also serve as a scratchoff game that allows the customer the chance of winning up to $500.


Police search local business

*Posted: Saturday, December 11, 2010 12:00 am *

LOGAN — The Logan Police Department executed a search warrant for Logan business Mingo Trading Company on Main Street Friday afternoon.

According to Police Chief Aaron Miller, the department received a tip about alleged illegal gaming going on in the facility.

The Ohio Attorney General’s Office granted a search warrant. It is suspected the business is in violation of a law prohibiting cash payouts for skilled gaming winners.

The outcome of the search warrant was not available as of press time. Any findings will be reported to Hocking County Prosecuting Attorney Laina Fetherolf, who will determine if charges should be brought.


Owner of Red Door Internet Cafe & Arcade faces setback

BY DEBRA TOBIN Logan Daily News Reporter This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

LOGAN — After struggles and complications of getting his business up and running, Dancing Elk, owner of Red Door Internet Cafe & Arcade, has given up the hope of opening the doors at 54 E. Main St. in Logan.

“I tried to fight for what is right, but we are just going to take a different path,” Dancing Elk said in a phone interview Wednesday. “There’s just too much to deal with.”

Dancing Elk relocated his business from Spring Street to the Main Street location in hopes of opening sometime in early October. However, a stop work order was placed on the front door by Logan Fire Chief Brian Robertson last week for code violations on the building.

This left Dancing Elk in a quandary with opening his business in a timely manner. Building owner Mike Nihiser received a notice of violation on the building on or about Aug. 25 with 30 days to comply with the notice. When questioned, Nihiser stated all violations were taken care of and he knew of no pending violations.

On Tuesday, five state officials arrived to inspect the building, but Nihiser was not present so the building inspectors left, leaving Dancing Elk without any answers. David Weber Jr., who leases and lives in the building, also was not present.

During a phone interview with Nihiser, he stated he has tried to reach out to the state, but no one has returned his calls and he was unaware he was supposed to be on hand for the inspection on Tuesday. “I mean, come on now — a 24 hour span is a long time. What was I supposed to do? Camp out there until they showed up for the inspection?” he asked.

“I have called twice for Mr. Eaton,” he said. “And no one has returned my calls.”

Nihiser is hoping that with the violations against his building, that all parties involved are playing fair. “Where is all of this going to stop? They have to be fair about it,” he said.

“When someone opens a business downtown or anywhere, is the fire chief going to be fair? Are they going to be inspected like we are? My question is, are they going to make this big of a deal with all new businesses?” he questioned.

“I just don’t think they are being consistent,” Nihiser said.

While Nihiser has many questions, he stated he is waiting for someone to call him and tell him exactly what is needed to correct any existing problems with the building.

Dancing Elk was advised he now has the opportunity to appeal on the state level, but the process could take months.

According to Dancing Elk, he would need to hire a state-certified architect for the floor plans, and the plans would need to be signed off on — which could become very costly.

“I am just stymied by this,” he exclaimed. “This could cost thousands of dollars. I’m just astounded and don’t understand.”

Logan Fire Chief Brian Robertson stated it’s the State of Ohio that has the violation on the building. However, it was his office that issued the stop work order due to not having the proper permits. “It’s in the state’s hands, but anytime you change the footprint of a commercial building without state approved plans, it’s a violation of state code,” Robertson said.

Matt Mullins, spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Commerce told The Logan Daily News in a phone interview, “It’s the building owner who must comply with the violation notice, not the occupants. In this case, it’s Mr. Nihiser who must comply with the change of use and occupancy violation.”

Mullins said Wednesday that Nihiser will be given an adjudication order once it has been prepared for the building code compliance. “We have received no cooperation at all from the building owner (Nihiser) during this process,” Mullins stated. “We have gone through the process and reached out to him on numerous occasions, but he has not submitted any plans for approval.”

For now, it’s another disappointment and setback for Dancing Elk, who is stuck in time warp battle with the Department of Commerce trying to enforce compliance rules with building owner Nihiser. In the meantime, Dancing Elk said, “I’m just washing my hands of the whole thing. All I wanted to do was open a business downtown and help the economy.”

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