Mississippi Could Expand Coastal Casinos to 25

The number of casinos along the Mississippi coast could soon double. There are currently 12 casinos operating on the coast. If all the proposed casinos that have obtained site approval from the state were built there would be 25 coastal casinos.

The Mississippi gaming commission continues to consider new applications for casino sites, including one for a casino in Long Beach. Since 2005, when Hurricane Katrina hit the Mississippi coastal area and caused massive devastation, the state gaming commission has granted approval to 22 casino sites.

In Mississippi, casino site approvals never expire, meaning any of the 22 sites could erect a casino at any moment. However, before construction can begin the developers still have to jump through financial hoops. They have to prove they have enough funding in the beginning to complete the structure and launch operations of the casino.

One of the people who received site approval, Mark Seymour Sr., planned to build a French-themed casino along the coast complete with a marketplace. He passed away before he could secure funding for the project.

Another casino at Gulfport Harbor has been waiting for years to break ground. A project of Diamondhead Casino Corp., it owns 404 acres along Interstate 10 but has been unable to find a development partner.

The Gaming Commission sometimes sends casino financial proposals away, telling the developer to up their game. They say most developers never get past the design rendering phase. The proposal currently under consideration in Long Beach is supported by the local community who say it will bring much-needed tax revenue.

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