The Royal D’Iberville casino site in D’Iberville, Mississippi has been purchased by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, who operate casinos in Alabama and Florida.
According to Biloxi attorney Michael Cavanaugh, the sale of the parcel of land immediately to the west of Interstate 110 was completed on Friday.
In a statement, the Poarch Creek Indian Gaming Authority said that it is aware of events throughout the Southeast that present investment opportunities and after evaluating this property they felt it would hold its value whether they decide to develop it now or sometime in the future. “We continue to evaluate development opportunities and the Mississippi Gulf Coast gaming market is one we may seek to enter at some future time, the statement concluded, according to the Sun Herald.
Any casino operator deciding to build off-reservation in the state of Mississippi would be subject to the same casino tax as required by all commercial casinos in the state, and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians won’t be treated any differently, said Allen Godfrey, executive director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission.
In addition to a race track and poker games in Gretna, Florida, Poarch Creek Indian Gaming has three casinos in Alabama; Creek Casino Wetumpka, Creek Casino Montgomery, and the Wind Creek Casino & Hotel in Atmore.
The December opening of the Scarlet Pearl Casino saw the first casino resort to open in D’Iberville and the 12th in South Mississippi. Commissioner Godfrey said, “We have a very strong gaming market on the Gulf Coast right now.” Mayor Rusty Quave said for so many years plans for Royal D’Iberville were active. Quave said that the purchase of the property keeps the hope alive for the entire city and city officials are optimistic about working with the new owners. He said that after 20 years when D’Iberville got its first casino “Scarlet Pearl did not take away from gaming market — it grew it for the first time since 2007.” Quave said that the more attractions and amenities that are added in South Mississippi the better it is for the entire casino market.
There are four approved casino sites in D’Iberville. In addition to Royal D’Iberville and Scarlet Pearl the development of a casino adjacent to the Royal D’Iberville site has been worked on by casino executive Peter Simon, according to a group recently considering the financing of a casino on the eastern boundary of D’Iberville at the Oyster Bay site.