Pope County On line casino Bidding Interval to Open This Summer time

Posted on: March 12, 2024, 09:32h. 

Final up to date on: March 12, 2024, 09:38h.

The Arkansas gaming license reserved for Pope County is again for a 3rd bidding spherical after the primary two resulted in authorized chaos.

Pope County Arkansas casino license
Pope County stays freed from a on line casino greater than 5 years after voters approved Las Vegas-style playing within the Arkansas county. The Arkansas Racing Fee will quickly host one other bidding interval for the gaming license. (Picture: CBS 11)

The Arkansas Racing Fee (ARC) has accepted its amended guidelines for issuing the 4 business on line casino licenses voters approved by way of a statewide poll referendum in 2018. A aggressive bidding interval for the gaming concession allotted for Pope County is anticipated to start within the coming months.

ARC just lately edited its Software for On line casino Gaming License and Renewal procedures to accommodate but one other bidding spherical for the Pope resort alternative. The gaming regulators added a bit studying, “If no on line casino license is awarded on the conclusion of the applying course of, the fee shall open a brand new software interval.”

The fee additionally needs a extra complete presentation.

“The fee shall take into account the next standards based mostly on advantage to guage functions, together with an in depth abstract of the proposed on line casino together with resort, facilities, projected variety of workers, and every other info the on line casino applicant deems related,” the applying course of now reads.

The Arkansas legislature should approve ARC’s amended software guardrails earlier than the fee can open one other Pope County on line casino bidding interval. The Normal Meeting is anticipated to ratify the modifications in April.

Authorized Scandal Drags On

ARC first issued Gulfside On line casino Partnership, a Mississippi-based enterprise, the Pope County on line casino license. After a commissioner was decided to have had a bias in his grading of Gulfside’s plan over a competing bid from Cherokee Nation Companies (CNB), the business arm of the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma, the Arkansas Legal professional Normal’s workplace advisable that ARC rescind the license and conduct one other bidding spherical.

The Cherokees received spherical two, however Gulfside efficiently sued on claims that the Cherokee plan violated ARC’s bidding guidelines that ban functions from consortiums. The lawsuit additionally contended that the Cherokees’ newly shaped entity, Legends Resort & On line casino, LLC, which was named on the applying, lacked gaming expertise as required.

Cherokee attorneys pushed again on that allegation, saying the tribe has a long time of expertise working quite a few tribal and business casinos in Oklahoma and Mississippi. Arkansas courts acknowledged that CNB is aware of learn how to run a on line casino, however mentioned that have doesn’t lend to Legends.

“We’ve been by way of sufficient litigation to final us a lifetime,” ARC Chair Alex Lieblong mentioned throughout a gathering on Monday.

On line casino Market

Two of the three different Arkansas on line casino licenses accepted by voters have been written into the modification and earmarked for the state’s two current racetracks, Southland in Memphis and Oaklawn in Sizzling Springs. These racinos have since change into full-fledged Las Vegas-style casinos with slot machines, desk video games, and sports activities betting.

ARC additionally rapidly awarded the opposite license to the Quapaw Nation after it partnered with Jefferson County. The Oklahoma tribe has since opened the $350 million Saracen On line casino Resort.

The three casinos generated gross gaming income of $686.6 million final yr, up 12% from 2022.

The financial advantages that casinos have been billed to carry the 4 areas haven’t been realized in Pope County, because the license stays in limbo over a half-decade after the gaming allow was accepted.

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