Plans for a casino resort in southeastern Hancock County, Mississippi are back on the table as developers hope their proposal doesn’t meet with the same fate as another did in 2014, according to the WBRC FOX6 News report.
The casino resort proposal by Diamondhead Realty LLC and Jacobs Entertainment is for the city of Diamondhead. Since 2008, casinos have applied for zoning at the south side of the city that was nearly completely obliterated by Hurricane Katrina just three years earlier. A site application was denied by the Mississippi Gaming Commission as of June 2014 due to the fact that it wasn’t in the Bay of Saint Louis. Had it been approved, it would be the only casino in the state with just about direct I-10 access.
Current laws prohibit casinos from being built on land that isn’t associated with the waterfront. Existing laws were changed after the casino industry on the coast was decimated by the hurricane. Facing opposition from existing casino operators and legislators, including Governor Phil Bryant, in October, regulators decided to forgo considering changes to current casino gaming regulations.
For several years talk of a casino resort in Diamondhead has been the subject of much debate. And two years ago after commissioners deemed that land situated west of the yacht club and south of I-10 was inappropriate, the casino resort proposal by Diamondhead Realty LLC and Jacobs Entertainment was rejected. Once again, the gaming commission will decide the fate of the current proposal. According to the news agency, the actual plans for the development have yet to be seen by anyone and Mayor Thomas Schafer said that he could neither oppose nor endorse a project he has not seen.
While the site, which is zoned commercial, was rejected previously, the gaming commission’s executive director Alan Godfrey said that the developers are within their rights to resubmit a proposal in an attempt to reactivate the deal. Godfrey told the news agency that the proposal will likely not be heard by the gaming commission until January.