By Roger McKinney
PINEVILLE, Mo. —
Officials with Downstream Casino Resort on Friday touted what they say has been a $1 billion contribution to the area economy as they made official the opening of a new hotel.
John Berrey, chairman of the Quapaw Tribe’s business committee, said there has been a recession, a tornado, and many deaths and births in the past five years.
“On May 14, 2007, we said we were going to break ground,” Berrey said. “It’s led us to today.”
He said the casino and the tribe have good relations with officials in all three states.
Area chamber of commerce and Quapaw Tribe officials participated in a ceremonial ribbon-cutting for the $50 million, 152-room Kappa Hotel.
Steven Drewes, Downstream manager, gave details of an economic impact study it commissioned with KlasRobinson market research firm in Minneapolis, Minn.
It lists a cumulative economic output of almost $750 million over five years, and a $361 million economic output for the new hotel.
Downstream employs 1,200 and has an annual payroll of $34 million, and employee benefits of $12 million. It makes $41 million in purchases annually and pays more than $7 million in annual taxes.
The casino and hotels contribute $10 million annually to the Quapaw Tribe, which goes to tribal services including health care, environmental services, senior services and scholarships.
Downstream Casino Resort officials say estimates suggest the casino’s annual impact at $26 million in Missouri, $10 million in Kansas and $10 million in Oklahoma.