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Shooting Star VIP perks are now considered income

If you go to the Shooting Star Casino, take notice of this letter to the editor.

On Jan. 20, 2012, I along with many other people received a letter from Shooting Star Casino. The letter was asking for my taxpayer I.D. number, certification of name, address, and social security number.

Along with this letter was a W-9 form. Then on Feb. 1, 2012 Shooting Star sent a 1099 form in the amount of $3,510 referring to it as Star Cash from VIP Perks. Perks are given to VIP members to entice reward members to visit the facility and spend additional monies.

These Star Cash dollars will put me as well as others in a higher income tax bracket. As many VIP members are retired and on fixed incomes it creates financial hardships. Hardships that could have been avoided had the Casino been upfront with their intentions on declaring VIP perks as a tax deduction.

The Jan. 20, 2012 letter stated this was a potential issue with the IRS and was signed by Larry D. Kindseth CFO. I had a 45-60 minute phone discussion with the IRS upon receiving Shooting Star's notice. The agent checked with other agents and no one knew about the alleged notice. I was told by this agent that this was something the Casino was doing on their own and that the IRS had no knowledge of the issue.

I hope whoever reads this editorial thinks long and hard about how much money and time you will spend at the Shooting Star Casino in the future. Remember there are many other casinos who do not tax their VIP players for reward perks and its the VIPs who keep Shooting Star doors open.

This Casino has misrepresented this issue as well as their break the bank (Deal or No Deal) functions in informing VIP members to call and get registered for one of the 75 players only to find that day bus loads of people from surrounding areas brought in for this function. How many elite VIP members do they have.

If VIP members have obtained such status shouldn't they be treated as such? The Shooting Star's recent logo was (the more you play the more we pay) but they neglected to say but you will be taxed on it?

If you have an opinion on this issue I'm in hopes that you voice your concerns.

-- D.J. Morrison, Detroit Lakes