The Quapaw Tribe owns and operates the Downstream Casino Resort in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri, and could soon be bringing its gaming expertise to Arkansas. Photo: Downstream

Cherokee Nation and Quapaw Tribe spend nearly $6 million on gaming campaign

The Cherokee Nation and the Quapaw Tribe will soon find out whether voters in Arkansas will approve their gaming campaign.

Together, the tribes donated nearly $6 million to a ballot initiative that would authorize up to four casinos in the state, The Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported. Of that amount, Cherokee Nation Businesses contributed $2.28 million, while the Quapaw Tribe's Downstream Development Authority contributed $3.65 million.

"It's time to stop sending Arkansas money to out of state casinos, and start investing here at home," an October 23 post from Driving Arkansas Forward reads. "You can help keep our tax and tourism dollars in Arkansas, by voting for Issue 4."

Issue 4 is on the November 6 ballot. If approved, it would authorize casinos in two counties that the tribes could bid on.

The Driving Arkansas Forward initiative also authorizes gaming at an existing dog track and at an existing horse track, The Associated Press reported.

Both tribes have plenty of experience in gaming. The Cherokee Nation operates nine Indian gaming facilities in neighboring Oklahoma, including one near the Arkansas border.

The Quapaw Tribe operates two casinos in Oklahoma, including one whose property reaches into Kansas and Missouri. The tribe also owns land in Arkansas and once had a reservation there.

Read More on the Story
Groups report Arkansas ballot issue contributions, spending (The Arkansas Democrat Gazette October 31, 2018)
Arkansas casino campaign raises more than $2.7 million (The Associated Press October 30, 2018)
Arkansas Stars Vote On New Proposal to Allow Casino Gambling (Tight Poker October 29, 2018)
Sides square off on Arkansas casinos issue (The Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette October 28, 2018)

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