In a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the Mississippi State Port Authority (MSPA) amended its lease agreement with the casino operators of the Island View Casino Resort enabling them to secure funding to build a new casino in Gulfport on the south side of U.S. Highway 90.

It was just last year that co owner’s Rick Carter and Terry Green cut the ribbon at the grand opening ceremony of the $58 million Island View Beach Tower. The investment in the hotel tower renovation was something the Island View committed to back in 2013.

Tuesday’s vote to modify the percentage of the Island View’s gross income that is received by the Port Authority is the first step in the plan to invest approximately $75 million in a new casino which will complement the beach tower. Carter told local media that they expect to be able to show the final plans for the new casino within the next few months.

Executive director and CEO of the MSPA, Jonathan Daniels, said, “The Commission’s willingness to reduce future revenues and to allow Island View to pursue further expansion efforts, solidifies the company’s position in South Mississippi’s gaming market.” Daniels added, “The structure of this new agreement will also allow for significant increases in tax revenue for the state of Mississippi, Harrison County, and the city of Gulfport,” according to local sources.

In a press release, Governor Phil Bryant said, “I commend the State Port for having the foresight to negotiate an amendment to its lease with Island View, setting the stage for additional employment opportunities in one of the state’s strongest industry sectors. The partnership between Island View and the Port continues to be beneficial to the growth of both organizations and will continue to provide future economic stability for the Gulf Coast.”

In other news in The Magnolia State, attorneys for Gulfport Gaming Development LLC, have asked the Mississippi Gaming Commission to delay site approval in the name of the development company for a $140 million casino on property at the Gulfport harbor.