“Free to move forward” with the Vigo casino; Full House drops the lawsuit

January 5 – FHR-Atlas LLC and Full House Resorts LLC have dropped a lawsuit against the Indiana Gaming Commission.

Mike McMains, chairman of the Indiana Gaming Commission, said the commission was “pleased that Full House has rejected these actions and that Vigo County and the greater community of west-central Indiana will soon benefit from this important project. of economic development ”.

Jenny Reske, deputy director of the Indiana Gaming Commission, said the measure allows the Vigo County casino project to move forward.

“We are free to move forward. We have already started scheduling a meeting with Churchill Downs to discuss deadlines and expected opening dates,” Reske said today.

Churchill Downs’ license was issued when Lucy Luck’s administrative appeal was dismissed on December 27, she said.

Justice Patricia McMath today ordered the dismissal of the case after Full House filed a notice of dismissal Tuesday in Marion County Superior Court.

Paul Vink, attorney for Bose McKinney & Evans, which represents Full House, sent a letter Tuesday to Dennis Mullen, general counsel for the Indiana Gaming Commission, stating that “Full House never intended that such action delays economic development or is interpreted as malicious. ; instead, Full House sought to clarify the issues addressed in the documents through the only statutory, legal and transparent means available. “

Vink said Full House reviewed the Dec. 21 Gaming Commission meeting noting comments from McMains and other commission members.

“While we do not agree with the characterizations that have been made regarding the motives and merits of our demands, the comments of the President and other Commissioners made it clear that even if the process was reopened or repeated , it is unlikely that the result will be different, “he added. Vink wrote.

In December, Full House filed a lawsuit in Marion County 2 Superior Court in Indianapolis, arguing that an Indiana Gaming Commission hearing violated Indiana Open Door law because the Gambling Commission adjourned an executive session to discuss the proposals in the middle of the hearing.

The complaint also suggests that Full House offered a more desirable package. He says: “Full House has spent a lot of time and money securing a highly visible site that has around 11 million cars per year. The Full House destination complex was designed to be essentially a billboard for the millions of cars passing by its site. “

In contrast, the lawsuit argues, Churchill Downs proposed a much less visible site next to the freeway on US 41, near a county jail and a wastewater treatment site with a rooftop bar. which overlooks the prison and the processing plant.

Reske said the Gaming Commission still had this site as the location for a Churchill Downs casino. Reske said Churchill Downs can file a request for a different location with the Gaming Commission.

Full House’s complaint had asked the court to find the commission violated the Open Door Act, to overturn the decision to deny Full House’s request and to grant Churchill Downs’ request and to ban the granting of license to Churchill Downs.

The measure now paves the way for Churchill Downs to obtain the County of Vigo casino license. Lucy Luck Gaming struck a deal last month to have its $ 5 million license fee returned to Lucky Luck, dismissing its appeal against the Gaming Commission.

Journalist Howard Greninger can be reached at 812-231-4204 or [email protected] Follow on Twitter @ TribStarHoward.

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