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New proposal for southeast Kansas casino

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October 28, 2009

TOPEKA - A sole proposal was submitted to the Kansas Lottery on the deadline Monday for a casino in southeast Kansas. It would be a $225 million casino about one mile north of Interstate 44 near the Oklahoma border in southeast Cherokee County. It would feature 900 slot machines and 30 game tables.

The plan was submitted by Ozark Trail Gaming LLC, a group that includes former Wichita Mayor Bob Knight. It was the first porposal since Penn National Gaming withdrew theirs in September 2008 citing competition from the Downstream Casino opened in July 2008 just across the Oklahoma boarder.

Bob Knight believes that two casinos in that area woulc benefit each other by drawing more gamblers and tourists to the area. "It's viewed as a very, very difficult project," he said. "Some are looking at that as a glass half empty. Our view is that it's at least a glass half full."

The Lottery Commission has until January 19th to negotiate a contract with Ozark Trail. If successful, the contract will be sent to the state review board for final review and approval.

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