Three days after Cherokee nation submitted their formal application for a license that will allow them to develop a casino Choktaw nation submitted theirs as well. Cherokee nation submitted an amended application to meet the requirements of the licensing board.

With this application, Choktaw nation formally presented competition to the Cherokee nation. Both tribes are now competing for the license from the Arkansas Racing Commission so as to get permission to start their casino business within Pope County. And going by recent reports, Cherokee Nation is said to be the leading contender.

Although Choktaw Nation presented its application later, the tribe had expressed its interest in developing a casino since October and had even sought the approval of the Matteson Village Board of Trustees. The Indian Tribe got a 6-0 unanimous vote that propelled them to the next step which is the formal submission.

According to, the trustees were in support of the move because of the tribe’s ambition to set up a south suburban trauma unit. Chocktaw nation already supports higher education, housing and games facilities for its members.

In the formal application, Choktaw nation is listed to be the company that is after the application. On the contrary, it is TVSHKA Gaming that is behind the application. The former is a subsidiary of Choktaw Nation.

So far Choktaw nation has not received supporting letters from Pope County officials which hints that they are supporting Cherokee nation instead. Following this, the bold Choktaw nation went on to submit their application without the letters.

This move was shocking to a number of officials. County Judge, Ben Cross for instance was taken aback and declared in a statement that it was surprising that Chocktaw nation had submitted an incomplete application.

By incomplete submission the County Judge meant that the application was not in line with the constitutional requirements of Amendment 100 which required that all new casinos must have endorsements from the county officials.

The Amendment 100 is the clause that allows the building of a new casino in both Pope and Jefferson counties. It also has a provision for the racetrack facilities’ operational expansion in West Memphis and Hot Springs.

Chocktaw’s omission of the supporting letters still surprises officials who are wondering why the team would still submit an application even when the requirements have not been met.

As for the tribe, it seems that they are not quite concerned. Chocktaw nation is already ahead of itself making partnerships with other companies. It has partnered with Legends which is a management company that was founded by Jerry Jones and George Steinbrenner.

Jones is also the owner of Dallas Cowboys while the late George Steinbrenner was the owner of New York Yankees.

Choktaw nation in a statement explained that their partners would play a major role in the design and development of the casino if they get the go ahead from the officials. All they have to do is to first get the license and the rest would follow suit.

Damaris is a seasoned writer and analyst of the gambling market with several years of experience writing for various blogs and websites worldwide. He has worked with several casino startups and is a supporter of credible casino projects worldwide.
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