Gaming Revenue board puts off vote on Cove Lane interchange project

By Gaming Revenue board puts off vote on Cove Lane interchange project

Calcasieu Parish Gaming Revenue

District board members agreed Wednesday to put off passing a resolution

to use future gambling

revenue from the Ameristar Casino Resort for the Interstate

210-Cove Lane interchange project until the Sulphur City Council

considers the matter at its April 8 meeting.

State Department of Transportation and

Development officials estimate the project will cost $80 million. Of

that, $20 million

would be contributed by the parish, the city of Lake Charles, Port

of Lake Charles, Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors

Bureau, Pinnacle Entertainment, Sulphur, Vinton, Iowa and

DeQuincy. DOTD, state capital outlay money and Ameristar would cover

the remaining $60 million.

The Lake Charles City Council, Police Jury and other local entities have agreed to contribute $20 million of their gambling

money from Ameristar on the project, except Sulphur.

The “small cities” — Sulphur, DeQuincy,

Vinton and Iowa — are expected to get $548,100 in annual gambling

revenue from Ameristar.

They would spend $232,000 annually for five years on the project.

Sulphur is expected to receive $232,105 in annual revenue

from Ameristar and spend $98,245 a year for five years.

Roach said the smaller cities now get 4.5 percent of annual gambling revenue, subject to a cap of $1 million. He said the

board is considering raising that share to 8.7 percent with no cap.

Sulphur Mayor Chris Duncan said he does not believe $80 million will cover the cost of the project.

Roach said the Cove Lane project could go out for bids in May and that the Ameristar Casino Resort should open by June 14.

The gambling district board includes Roach, Parish Administrator Bryan Beam, Police Jury President Shannon Spell and Vinton

Mayor Kenny Stinson.