An effort to bring a casino to Slidell now includes a revenue breakdown of how the property could benefit the city, the parish and the state of Louisiana.
St. Tammany Parish, home of the city of Slidell, will receive 5% of net gaming revenue from the proposed casino deal, according to a new report from the St. Tammany Parish Development District.
The report increases their annual revenue estimate from $7.5 million to $9 million.
Money staying in St. Tammany a big factor in casino deal
Politicians and developers are touting revenue boom with 26% of net revenue going to the state of Louisiana, and 5% staying in St. Tammany.
Chris Masingill, CEO of St. Tammany Parish Economic Development, said a 5% rate for St. Tammany would be the best deal in the state.
The St. Tammany Parish government will receive 37.5% of the casino payouts, 12.5% of which must be spent in the St. Tammany Parish Gaming and Entertainment Zone, an unincorporated area around Slidell.
The city of Slidell will receive 15% of the revenue each year. The majority of the proposed casino’s impact will be in the eastern part of St. Tammany Parish.
Citizens in Covington and other parts of western St.Tammany Parish seem to have little issue with seeing most of the funds stay around Slidell.
Who all gets money from Slidell-area casino?
The report details that 16% of the Slidell-area casino revenue will go into a grant fund for community enhancement. The second-largest chunk of funds is projected to be around $1 million annually.
Nonprofits that provide the following services would be eligible:
- Youth and elderly
- Gambling addiction
- Food insecurity and homelessness
In addition, St. Tammany Levee District officials stated that the 8% of net revenue from the casino would be used to maintain Levee District projects. This comes as a change from previous versions where the casino developers planned to contribute to a ring levee for the Slidell area.
Elsewhere, casino developers have included $35 million for the creation of the East St. Tammany Competitive Sports and Tourism Complex, which will receive 7% off the annual net revenue to fund operations of the facility.
Not all funds have a designated use right now. For example, 4% of casino revenue will be placed in what officials are calling the St. Tammany Parish Municipal Special Project Fund.
According to Covington Mayor Mark Johnson, the money wouldn’t be enough to fund large infrastructure projects, but it would be “a little bit of lagniappe,” meaning a bonus.
As part of the agreement, St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office will receive a new substation, courtesy of the developers. St.Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office will also collect 2% annually from the net gaming revenue.
More funding thrown into Slidell casino project
An updated proposal of the casino project noted that Peninsula Pacific Entertainment increased its plan from $250 million to $325 million to add a convention space, outdoor amphitheater, lazy river and upgrades to a nearby marina.
This update reflects suggestions from the public on what residents would like to see at the property. Masingill praised Peninsula Pacific for including some of thsoe suggestions.
“We wanted to make sure we have a relationship for the long term with this project, and we got that. We wanted certain representation as it relates to St. Tammanians being able to work at this project, and we got that.”
Parish council members expect to vote on the casino project following a June 30 public hearing. Then the Louisiana Gaming Control Board would need to approve a casino license. If the casino proposal receives approval, voters in the parish will have their say in November, which could allow for groundbreaking to occur by December.