Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort remains in limbo amidst developer dispute

October 17, 2023
By

The long-awaited Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort remains on pause as the Catawba Tribe continues its negotiations with developer Sky Boat.

These negotiations come after the Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort faced both fines and potential temporary closure due to the location's reported violations of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and National Indian Gaming Commission regulations, according to local reports.

According to the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC), the Catawba Nation did not submit the required management contract within the required time period for the expansion, forcing plans to move and expand the already 1,000-machine-strong operation from its currently temporary modular structured casino to a permanent facility to pause. 

To reach the requirements of casino ownership, the manager of the Two Kings Casino expansion, Sky Boat, has requested the Catawba Nation to pay an 'exorbitant' $125m payout plus additional $6m annual payments to acquire control of its trust lands, to satisfy the NIGC.  

Catawba Nation Chief Brian Harris has stated in a recent press release that the situation feels as if Sky Boat is 'holding hostage this casino resort project and all of the economic and quality-of-life benefits' its completion could bring the local people and residents.

The $700m casino project is still hoping to continue development following eventual settlement; however, the current situation does suggest that these settlements will not come swiftly.  

Sky Boat is currently in possession of nearby non-trust land which houses the parking lot of the temporary Two Kings Casino, which the negotiations when concluded would put under the control of Catawba Nations.

Since the incident, Catawba Nations operations have become fully Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) compliant, with its gaming machines now leased via an NIGC-approved supplier.

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