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Casino Negotiations Get 60-Day Extension

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March 10, 2008

TOPEKA, KS - Governor Sebelius approved a request from the Kansas Lottery Commission to extend the period for negotiating casino contracts by another 60 days.

Last Tuesday Executive Director Ed Van Petten hand-delivered the request to the governor, who quickly approved it. She said in a statement:

''I believe the Lottery Commission has acted in good faith to meet the statutory deadlines, but the complexity of the issues they face makes it necessary to give them more time to finalize their contract negotiations. We must move expeditiously and accurately to ensure the contracts are done right.''

The commission is negotiating potential contracts with 13 developers. When completed, the contracts will be sent to the Lottery Gaming Facility Review Board for final decisions. The board will review and select four of the developers to build and operate casinos in Cherokee, Ford, Sumner and Wyandotte counties. The casinos will be owned by the state.

The new deadlines will now extend May 27th for twelve of the contracts and to May 5th for Penn National Gaming Inc., the only applicant in Cherokee County. The Quapaw Tribe plan to open a casino in July at a site adjacent to the Penn National site off Interstate 44. The Cherokee County Commission is seeking an injunction against the tribe in a lawsuit against the U.S. Interior Department.

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