IRGC votes unanimously to deny Argosy Casino's operating license renewal
IRGC meeting in Riverside, Iowa.
IRGC Chair Jeff Lamberti joins the meeting via Skype.
The fate of several hundred jobs and millions in state revenue was up for debate in Riverside, Iowa Thursday morning.
That's where the Racing & Gaming Commission mulled over the future of the Argosy Casino's state gaming license.
In front of a standing room only audience inside the banquet room at the Riverside Casino & Golf Resort, the Iowa Racing & Gaming Commission voted unanimously to deny Argosy license renewal.
The vote followed an initial motion by IRGC Chair Jeff Lamberti to do just that, one that was quickly seconded.
Thursday's decision comes in wake of weeks of legal wrangling over a long-term, land-based casino deal between Argosy's operator, Penn National Gaming, and MRHD, Missouri River Historical Development.
"The fundamental issue is that there is no operating agreement that's been approved by the commission, uh, between Belle and MRHD so Belle, there are absent non-profit operator which Iowa code requires to license holders for a gaming operation in the State," Brian J. Ohorilko - Administrator / Iowa Racing & Gaming Commission said.
In the meantime, Belle can continue to operate for a yet to be determined period of time into the future so it can allow for employees to plan accordingly. And it's more than likely Belle will file an appeal, allowing for its license to remain valid over the course of what could be long, legal proceedings.
For much more on Thursday breaking developments including reaction from Penn National Gaming and an update on the status of the Hard Rock Casino project, watch KTIV News 4 throughout the afternoon and evening and online at KTIV.com