Governor, tribe approve sports betting agreement

After a yearlong delay, the effort to bring sports betting to Harrah’s Cherokee Casinos is finally moving forward following Gov. Roy Cooper’s approval of a proposed amendment to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians’ gaming compact. Tribal Council approved the amended compact by unanimous vote on Thursday, Dec. 3, a move that those present in the chamber greeted with enthusiastic applause.

Tribe considers Indiana casino purchase

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians is hoping to close a deal to buy Caesars Southern Indiana Casino, with Tribal Council on Nov. 12 giving Principal Chief Richard Sneed the go-ahead to incur the costs necessary to pursue the purchase, to the tune of approximately $10.5 million. 

Council approves $80 million cost increase on casino expansion

Tribal Council voted 11-1 during Annual Council Oct. 29 to approve the Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise’s request to borrow up to $80 million more than the $250 million initially budgeted to finish an expansion project at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in Cherokee. The decision came following an hour of closed session discussion and just four days after initially voting to table the request. 

Pandemic hit to per cap payments smaller than feared

Due to decreased casino profits related to the pandemic, December per capita payments to members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians will be only about two-thirds the size of last year’s distribution — but that number is better than expected.

Council balks at casino expansion price tag

Two years into construction of a $250 million expansion at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, the Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise approached Tribal Council Oct. 26 requesting permission to borrow an additional $50 million for the project — and council members were not pleased. 

Tribe purchases casino-adjacent property

Tribal Council unanimously approved a $3.4 million land purchase in the Painttown Community during its meeting on Thursday, Sept. 3. 

Cherokee passes COVID-adapted budget

In a narrow vote Sept. 3, the Cherokee Tribal Council approved a Fiscal Year 2021 budget that reflects the economic uncertainty caused by COVID-19. 

Tribe engages firm to pursue expanded casino holdings

As states throughout the Southeast consider allowing or expanding commercial gaming in their jurisdictions, Tribal Council has voted to enter into a contract with investment bank Innovation Capital that will allow the company to serve as the tribe’s exclusive financial advisor as it seeks to diversify its holdings in the gaming industry. 

Ground breaks on Catawba casino

Four months after the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians filed suit against the U.S. Department of the Interior’s decision to allow the Catawba Indian Nation to move forward with plans for a casino in Kings Mountain, the DOI has officially taken the land into trust and the Catawba have broken ground on the site. However, the EBCI is still fighting the decision, on July 6 submitting a new, amended complaint in the case. 

Coronavirus cluster found at Cherokee casino

Five employees at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in Cherokee have tested positive for COVID-19, and the investigation is ongoing, according to the Jackson County Department of Public Health.

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