A casino could be in the plans for Gulfport - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

A casino could be in the plans for Gulfport

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

By Jessica Bowman – email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - A new casino could be making its home in Gulfport. Rotate Black, a Michigan based gaming resort development group, has made a proposal to develop a casino near Gulfport's Small Craft Harbor.

As of now, the company has not gone through any of the red tape involved with the application process. It is just a proposal.

"I'm excited," Councilman Ricky Dombrowski said. "I think the city should be excited."

According to Rotate Black, the company has signed a letter of intent to lease and develop six acres of land adjacent to Jones Park and the Gulfport Small Craft Harbor. The land is the former location of Marine Life Aquarium and Misco Marine. Councilman Ricky Dombrowski is optimistic about the project's success.

"They just did $40 million worth of improvements to it and it will be basically a dock side ship," said Dombrowski.

The ship will not have to be constructed. It will be taken from Chicago and brought to Gulfport as the gaming vessel, so jobs will be available if the ship ever arrives.

"It's going to bring in 450 new jobs to the City of Gulfport," Dombrowski said.

Rotate Black's President Dual Cooper said, "Our project will bring needed jobs and tax revenue for the city, county and state."

Dombrowski agrees with his statement.

"This should help us down the road, 2011 budget to get out of the crunch we're in."

One local business owner in downtown Gulfport also thinks this is a positive sign for the city.

Part owner of The Quarter, Kevin Fish, said, "It's going to be great for the whole area, everyone. Maybe it will bring some residential down here, some shops, things to kick this area off."

The casino would be located in Gulfport's Ward two. That's area's councilwoman is Libby Milner Roland.

"This would be very positive for the downtown area," Roland said. "It's just one more component to enhance what we have to offer our residents and visitors."

Right now, Rotate Black has not applied for any applications, such as a site approval. Never the less, the company estimates the project will be completed this fall.

Dombrowski said one of the great things about the casino project is that the potential opening date coincides with the opening of the city's Small Craft Harbor. 

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