Danville City Council approved the agreement with Caesars Entertainment for a casino project, local media outlets reported Tuesday. Whether the Danville of the future will include a casino or not is now in the hands of the city residents who will cast their vote this fall.
The performance agreement proposed by Caesars and promising to bring millions in revenue and quality jobs for the city was approved by the Danville City Council, allowing the casino operator in exchange to build and develop a casino complex at the old schoolfield site.
Financial Details Regarding the Agreement
Under the terms of the agreement, Caesars will invest $400 million in the casino resort, employ at least 1,300 people paying them $15/hour minimum wage and will buy for the city an ambulance and a firetruck, besides the $15 million upfront payment. Danville is expected to gain in excess of $20 million in city tax revenue by the third year of operation for the casino.
“Our consultants and our attorneys have been working very hard with Caesars’s attorneys and their consultants to make sure Danville gets exactly what we feel Danville deserves and it worked out greatly.”Danville Mayor Alonzo Jones
Danville Mayor who is also among the 4 co-chairs of the “Caesars for Danville” referendum campaign and support committee also said the city would put the upfront payment in immediate use highlighting Danville’s priorities.
“Our priorities are to reduce violent crimes, support education and grow Danville. And what I’m asking in my second term as mayor is that we move that number two to number one, which is education.”Danville Mayor Alonzo Jones
Modern Casino Resort in the Works
The casino resort planned to break ground in late 2021 or early 2022 will transform the old Dan River Mills Schoolfield site. Besides the world-class casino gaming floor comprising of 2,000 slot machines, 75 table games and 16 poker tables and a sportsbook, the complex will feature a live entertainment theatre, convention space, full-service spa and pool, bars and restaurants.
The casino project was made possible due to Virginia legislators passing a law to allow 5 cities along the state-line, Bristol, Danville, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Richmond, to host casinos, in an attempt to generate an additional stream of revenue for the cities.
As Caesars is heading for the November referendum vote for the casino in Danville, so is Hard Rock International, being approved to develop a casino in Bristol. Both casinos’ fates lie now in the hands of the respective city residents who will have a chance to express their yes or no for the projects.