Treasurer joins fight to block Indian casino in city

A proposed casino and hotel near Remington Park in Oklahoma City would have „devastating consequences” to the state’s economy and should not be built, state Treasurer Scott Meacham is telling federal officials.

„A new Shawnee (Tribe) casino in Oklahoma City would clearly result in reduced gaming revenues for Remington Park and the central Oklahoma tribes,” Meacham wrote in a letter sent Monday to the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs. „We are approaching a near saturation of gaming and ‘destination casinos‘ in Oklahoma.”

Meacham asked the Bureau of Indian Affairs to deny the tribe’s application.

The Shawnee Tribe wants to build a 2,000-machine casino and 18-story hotel at Interstate 35 and Britton Road. The tribe has urged potential opponents to withhold judgment until next year when public comment will be sought.

Tribal officials predict the USD 400 million project would create 1,900 permanent jobs.

The land is 1.7 miles from Remington Park’s racetrack and casino, which claims a competing casino would put the track out of business.

Meacham said the state’s racing industry would be put at risk by the tribe’s proposal.

„The primary horse racing gaming in the state occurs at its largest track, Remington,” he said.