Details still sparse about travel plaza, casino in Coweta
By John Dobberstein, Editor
The city of Coweta said Tuesday that no development plan has been submitted yet for the travel plaza and casino being proposed by the Muscogee Creek Nation (MCN).
And whatever financial benefit the city of Coweta might reap from a casino depends on whether the property remains with the city or is entered into a federal trust.
City Manager Roger Kolman said the Coweta City Council became aware on June 8 that the MCN purchased the property at the southeast corner of Highway 51 and E. 131st Street
Kolman declined to provide more details about the project and referred questions to MCN, but he noted that no development plan has been submitted or change in zoning has been requested thus far. A portion of the property is zoned commercial and the rest is zoned agricultural.
Kolman said city regulations apply to all land in the city regardless of ownership, “unless that land is placed into federal trust on behalf of a federally recognized tribe of Native Americans.
“Should the (Muscogee Creek) Nation place the land into federal trust, then the land would be subject to federal regulations per compacts between the United States and the Muskogee (Creek) Nation rather than subject to city or State regulations.”
Kolman said the city will collect applicable sales and excise taxes on any commercial development, but if it’s placed if into federal trust, “the regulations, including taxation rights, of the United States government according to any compact with the Muskogee (Creek) Nation, would apply.”
Attempts to reach the MCN and Muscogee (Creek) Nation Office of Public Gaming were unsuccessful.
The MCNC approved a deal June 1 for the acquisition the undeveloped property, which sits just inside the corporate limits of the city of Coweta.
A MCNC resolution states a purchase agreement exists between the Nichols Family Trust and Tulsa-based Brico LLC. Brico’s president is Tulsa Realtor Brian Paine of Paine & Associates, which is also based in Tulsa.
Brico is expected to assign the purchase and sale to the Muscogee Nation.
The agreement calls for Muscogee Nation Gaming Enterprises — which owns, administers, operates and manages the Nation’s gaming facilities — to operate a travel plaza and casino at the location.
The National Council also voted to authorize MNGE to execute the design-build agreement between River Spirit Casino Resort and I-5 Design-Build.