Richmond city officials announced the hiring of a consultant to assist in the selection of the casino project in the Virginia capital.
The person selected for the consultant position is Leonard Sledge, director of the Richmond Economic Development Authority. But the decision is up to the voters next fall.
The vote for the authorization of a single casino will take place by referendum next November. Voters will need to determine the details of the gaming complex plan, including details of the city-designated casino operator.
The consulting contract was awarded to the New Orleans-based Convergence Startegy Group. He specializes in gaming industry matters, including project feasibility, demographic and market analysis, master planning, and strategy development.
The consultant fee for the casino project that the EDA can spend is up to $ 120,000.
The consulting firm was recently hired by another Virginia city, Danville, to help it select a casino partner. In the end, the city chose Caesars Entertainment.
Last September, Danville officials approved a development agreement with Caesars for the construction of a casino on the site of the former Dan River Mills industrial complex in the Schoolfield area.
Last November, Danville, along with three other cities – Norfolk, Portsmouth and Bristol, made the casino referendum.
The bidding period Richmond began in late December of last year. Interested companies have until February 22 to present their casino presentations to the city. Subsequently, the consulting company will contact each of them to choose the winner at the end.
There is a public tender announcement in Richmond and it comes from the Pamuckey tribe, which recently won the gaming rights in Norfolk. The Tribe is building its future $ 500 million casino there, in partnership with Jon Yarbrough.
Meanwhile, the Native american tribe He also expressed interest in building a $ 350 million gambling property in Richmond, more specifically, in the Manchester neighborhood. The location is just south of the downtown capital area across the James River.
Two other stakeholders are Colonial Downs Group, which already operates 2,150 historic horse racing machines in Virginia and Cordish Companies, based in Baltimore.
Cordish developed Riverside in James and is currently in the middle of a legal dispute in Norfolk regarding the city that chose the Pamuckey Tribe for the casino.
According to the Cordish official, his contract with Virginia states that he will receive gambling privileges if Virginia ever legalizes commercial gambling.
According to gaming law Of Virginia, signed last year by Gov. Ralph Northam, five struggling cities can ask their voters if they want a casino approved. Game projects are supposed to they will help the cities economically.
Richmond turned out to be one of the approved cities, but opted for one more year on the measure. According to city officials, such a project should be considered very carefully before moving forward.
Source: “City hires consultant to review casino developer proposal,” Richmond Biz Sense, January 29, 2021