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Danville council OKs agreement for proposed casino

September 2, 2020 GMT

DANVILLE, Va. (AP) — Danville’s City Council has approved a performance agreement with Caesars Entertainment for a casino, the latest step forward on a project still contingent on voter approval this fall.

The council approved the agreement Tuesday night, local media outlets reported.

According to TV station WSLS, Caesars promises to invest $400 million in the resort, hire 1,300 people at $15 an hour minimum and buy the city a firetruck and ambulance. Caesars has also agreed to give the city $15 million up front and expects to pay more than $20 million in city tax revenue by its third year, the station reported.

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In addition to a casino, plans for the development include at least 300 hotel rooms, a spa, theater, convention space, bars and restaurants.

Virginia lawmakers opened the door for the project earlier this year when they approved legislation to allow developers to build five large casino resorts around the state in what supporters have long hoped will be a dramatic economic boost to struggling areas. Virginia was one of the few states in the country where casinos were banned.