UPDATE: Gaming Commission votes 4-0 to shut down the President Casino

Casino Watch Focus reported that the State asked the Missouri Gaming Commission to shut down the President Casino. The St Louis Post Dispatch is reporting that the Gaming Commission voted 4-0 to shut down the President, claiming the President’s decline has been deliberate:

When Pinnacle Entertainment bought the President Casino in late 2006, the casino on the St. Louis riverfront employed 552 people and took in $67 million a year from gamblers.

But in the next 2½ years, the new owner jettisoned the buffet, the deli, slot machines on the second deck and most table games. The staff was cut by more than half. Annual revenue dipped to $23 million.

That decline formed the basis for the Missouri Gaming Commission’s unanimous decision Wednesday to take the first step to yank the license of the President, which is housed on the historic Admiral boat at Laclede’s Landing.

Pinnacle Entertainment has 30 days to appeal the decision and be granted a hearing in front of the commission, but this decision could take months as it can go through the courts as well.  As the Post is reporting, Pinnacle will be challenging that decision:

A Pinnacle executive called the move outrageous and vowed to fight it. Jack Godfrey, executive vice president and general counsel for Pinnacle, said the company spent $45 million to buy the President out of bankruptcy and was willing to spend millions more to fix the boat’s aging hull. “We have done nothing wrong,” said Godfrey, who promised to “examine all our legal remedies.”

Stay tuned to Casino Watch Focus for updates regarding this situation.

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