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Wyandotte Tribe could open Park City casino late this year

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February 21, 2010

An official of the Wyandotte Tribe says the tribe could open a casino at Park City by the end of this year. It would be a $20 million to $30 million casino with 1,000 to 1,200 slot machines and a small restaurant.

The tribe is waiting for approval of their application with the U.S Department of Interior to place the tribe's 10.5 acres at Park City into federal trust for the purpose of building a casino, and that approval may be close at hand.

Billy Friend, second chief of the tribe, said he learned recently that the application is waiting for the signature of Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs, Larry Echo Hawk. This is expected within 30 days. Then Interior Secretary Ken Salazar needs to sign it, which is generally a formality. Afterwards there will be a 30-day period for comment and appeal.

"If everything happened just right which doesn't happen very often with government the best-case scenario, you'd like to be open around Christmas," Friend said. The ground-breaking would be in April or May.

The casino would be Class II, which is electronic gaming played against other players and not the house. If the tribe negotiates a Class III (Vegas-style ) gaming compact with the state, the casino could add entertainment and retail space, Friend said.

In the meantime the Kansas Lottery Commission has approved plans for the Chisholm Creek Casino Resort in Sumner County. Final approval is pending with the Facility Gaming Review Board.

The first phase of the Chisholm Creek Casino will cost $125 and operate Class III gaming. There will be 1,300 slots and 40 gaming tables. The revised contract has special provisions if the Wyandotte casino is built.

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