MS gaming board denies casino locale
By Dwayne Bremer
Jun 27, 2014, 20:27
The Mississippi Gaming Commission on Thursday denied a possible casino site owned by Jacobs Entertainment in Diamondhead.
The commission voted 3-0 to deny the request.
Officials said the site of the casino and a recent letter from the Department of Marine Resources were key piece to the denial.
Under state law, land-based casinos must be within 800 feet of the mean high tide mark.
Jacobs' property is located adjacent to a bayou and marsh which are tributaries to the Bay of St. Louis.
If developers had been able to start the 800 feet in the bayou, then the casino could have been built across the street on Airport Drive.
If the 800 feet begins in the Bay, then the casino would have to be much closer to land.
In a recent letter from the Department of Marine Resources to the gaming commission, DMR Chief Jamie Miller said that his office believes that the boundaries of the Bay of St. Louis end at the marsh.
Miller said, however, that the location of a shoreline is not necessarily consistent with the mean-high-water mark.
Jacobs officials objected to the DMR letter and the commission said it would allow the company to reapply if it could find additional evidence supporting its case, officials said.
Jacobs has been discussing plans for a casino and resort in Diamondhead for several years.
Jacobs officials have said the plan to construct a $150 million casino/resort.
The casino venture could potentially produce $2.6 million in annual taxes and employ up to 550 people, officials said.