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Silvia Pavlof December 19, 2023 3 min read
Local Support Grows for ORGC and Bally’s Lake Area Casino
The envisioned project by ORGC extends beyond just a casino, allocating about 20 acres for the gaming facility and the rest for a hotel, convention center, restaurants, and shops
In a significant boost for the proposed casino development at Lake of the Ozarks, the Miller County Commission has unanimously endorsed the initiative led by Osage River Gaming and Convention (ORGC) in collaboration with Bally’s Corporation. This latest show of support comes as the local gaming group strives to bypass the General Assembly by garnering signatures for an initiative petition slated for the statewide November 2024 ballot.
Commission Unanimously Backs Lake Casino, Surprised by Tom Wright’s Endorsement
The commission’s decision follows a brief public comment session, where even former longtime Presiding Commissioner Tom Wright, known for his reservations about the casino, conceded that the county would benefit from the development, albeit not to the extent touted by proponents, reported KRMS Radio. Wright’s opinion underscores the ongoing debate about the economic impact of the proposed casino on the Lake area.
ORGC aims to establish the casino in the vicinity of the quarry near the Osage River Bridge, utilizing a portion of the 90-acre Eagles’ Landing Phase 4 property. This collaboration with Bally’s Corporation, as outlined in a recent letter to the City of Lake Ozark, reflects the gaming group’s commitment to the project’s success.
The casino project, if ultimately approved, will not be a traditional riverboat casino, as ORGC is not obligated to adhere to this specific format under Missouri law. The state’s regulations allow for casinos to be built on the shore, provided they meet certain requirements. Eagles’ Landing Phase 4 falls within the 1,000 feet limit of the Osage River floodplain, complying with the legal framework.
ORGC’s Innovative Vision Redefines Lake of the Ozarks Entertainment
The proposed development goes beyond just the casino, with ORGC envisioning the utilization of approximately 20 acres for the gaming facility and the remaining space dedicated to a hotel, convention center, restaurants, and shops. This comprehensive approach aligns with the evolving landscape of casino establishments, moving away from the traditional riverboat model.
Importantly, the local endorsement received by ORGC is distinct from the efforts of Osage Nation Gaming group, which is still pursuing approval for a separate casino in Lake Ozark, despite facing resistance from the city. The city’s main concern revolves around the potential lack of state regulation and taxation for this alternative casino proposal.
As both gaming groups navigate the complex landscape of approvals, the local community remains engaged in discussions, weighing the potential benefits and drawbacks of these contrasting casino projects for the picturesque Lake of the Ozarks region. The coming months are poised to be crucial as stakeholders await further developments in this unfolding saga.