P2E may lose Louisiana casino licence over DiamondJacks

The Louisiana Gaming Control Board says it won't consider another extension.
The Louisiana Gaming Control Board says it won't consider another extension.

The Louisiana Gaming Control Board has given Peninsula Pacific Entertainment 60 days to agree to sell the site or lose its state gaming licence.

US.- Peninsula Pacific Entertainment (P2E) had a tight deadline to resume operations at DiamondJacks Casino and Resorts after the rejection of its bid to relocate its licence. The Louisiana Gaming Control Board approved a resolution to push the February 9 deadline back to February 25, but the casino operator has said it won’t be able to open the casino.

DiamondJacks in Bossier City has been shut since May 2020, when P2E announced that it wouldn’t reopen the casino after pandemic restrictions were lifted. In October, the casino laid off 349 employees and held a liquidation sale, offloading everything from the kitchen and laundry equipment to flat-screen TVs and stage lights.

The operator made a bid to relocate its licence, arguing that the Shreveport area casino market was oversaturated. However, in December, voters in Louisiana’s St Tammany Parish rejected a referendum that would have allowed that.

P2E’s attorneys Peter Connick and Robert Smith attended a Louisiana Gaming Control Board hearing last week on behalf of the company. They said DiamondJacks would remain closed and that P2E no longer sees the casino as a viable business.

The regulator has given P2E an additional 60 days to figure out its plans. It must either sell the site or have its state gaming licence revoked. Revoking the company’s licence and retendering it would launch a process that could take up to five years for the state to complete with all the necessary bids and background checks.

Gaming board chairman Ronnie Johns said it was “extremely disturbing” that P2E had not yet determined next steps for the Diamond Jacks property since closing nearly two years ago. He also expressed disappointment that no one from P2E’s leadership attended Thursday’s meeting.

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DiamondJacks Casino LOUISIANA GAMING CONTROL BOARD Peninsula Pacific Entertainment