Developer Looks to Sign Agreement with Tribe
As reported by the Arkansas Democrat Gazette: "The developer behind a proposed casino in downtown Fort Smith says his next step is forging legal agreements that will hold him and a partnering Indian tribe accountable for their promises regarding the project. "Bennie Westphal of Fort Smith also said he hopes that winning the endorsement of the Fort Smith Regional Chamber of Commerce's directors board last week will give him a boost toward getting other support. "He said that with support from the board, the Central Business Improvement District and the Downtown Action Committee in hand and a decision from the Fort Smith Convention Center Commission pending, he'll next try for the endorsement of the Fort Smith Board of Directors. ".Westphal and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma want to build a $ 131 million casino with hotel on 10 acres on the city's downtown riverfront. ".The agreements also would allow Westphal and the tribe to formalize an offer to share a portion of casino revenues. They have proposed that Fort Smith receive 7. 5 percent of net profits."