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Davenport City Council Begins Creating Casino Board of Directors

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Step by step and vote by vote, Davenport is paving a new path in the casino world.

The city’s plans to buy Rhythm City Casino for $46 million and build a land-based casino are moving forward.

On Thursday, November 15th, city leaders, the Riverboat Development Authority, and officials with the Isle of Capri Corporation updated the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission on their proposed buy-out plan at the IRGC’s meeting in Johnston, Iowa.

City officials say the casino deal could be finalized as early as January. State gaming officials will need to approve the sale, which could take place at their meeting in March 2013.

But between now and then, the city is staying busy.

It has already received proposals from nearly a dozen interested casino developers. All proposals are due December 20th.

The city is also creating a non-profit community board that will run the whole operation. At their city council meeting on Thursday, November 15th, aldermen voted unanimously to create the Davenport Community Improvement Corporation or DCIC.

“You have to make a separation between the city and the actual entity that is going to oversee the gaming operation so that’s why we’re putting that in place,” says Sixth Ward Alderman Jeff Justin, who is also the Finance Committee Chair.

In place will be seven members – the City Administrator, the Chief of Police, then an alderman and four members from the community who will be appointed by the City Council.

“We want to have people that live in Davenport, have a commitment to Davenport, and want to see what’s best for Davenport,” says Alderman Justin.

City leaders say they may be able to announce who is on the DCIC at their next meeting on Tuesday, November 20th or Wednesday, November 28th.