The Ponca Tribe of Nebraska has been hoping to construct a casino near Omaha for quite a long time. Almost ten years after the plans were proposed, the tribe has now been given approval by the National Indian Gaming Commission to move forward.
The casino plans will place the facility in Carter Lake, Iowa, an idea that first surfaced in 2003. The tribe wanted to build a casino in the region, but the land was subjected to legal questions and the tribe was unable to move forward with plans until this most recent decision.
Larry Wright, Jr. is the chairman of the Ponca Tribe who stated that the decision will provide the tribe with the ability to create a casino that will provide significant new resources for members of the tribe as well as the tribe as a whole.
The original plan of the gaming venue included 2,000 slot machines and 50 table games. The property would include the casino as well as a hotel with 150 guest rooms. The project should bring about jobs to the region, with as many as 1,800 employment positions.
Despite the decision by the National Indian Gaming Commission, the state of Nebraska and Iowa are not happy with the new plan. This is due to the fact that nearby Council Bluffs is already home to several casinos. A new gaming venue could potentially take away revenues from these facilities.
Now the tribe has to hope that the government officials of each state will choose to end their fight against the project plans. As of the announcement of the approval for the gaming venue, representatives of the Attorneys General in Nebraska and Iowa have yet to state if they will be appealing the decision or if they will pursue other avenues of action against the tribe.