The Catawba Indian Nation announced Friday the name for its casino resort project in Cleveland County, North Carolina. In tribute to the City of Kings Mountain and the tribe’s Chief Hagler from the 18th century, the gaming and entertainment property was named Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort.
The Catawba revealed the name for the casino project during a private event attended by citizens of the Nation’s community, casino project partners and officials from City of Kings Mountain. Catawba Chief Bill Harris outlined that the name symbolizes the unique relationship existing historically between the Catawba people and fellow residents of the region, a bond that will continue to strengthen going forward.
“Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort celebrates our rich history and hopeful future in our ancestral lands in North Carolina – where our people were established hundreds of years ago, as the names Catawba River, Catawba County and Catawba College suggest.”
Chief Bill Harris, Catawba Indian Nation
In tribute to its leader, the logo for the gaming venue which was developed in consultation with the casino operator, Delaware North, depicts King Hagler’s silhouette against a graphic representation of Kings Mountain. King Hagler, Chief of Catawba Nation from 1750 to 1763, managed to forge a peaceful resolution with the American colonists in the region while defending the rights of his people.
Direct and Indirect Economic Impact Assessment
The casino resort project the Catawba Nation broke ground in late July is expected to have a significant economic impact for the region. According to a February impact assessment from London & Associates, the $273-million project in Cleveland County is expected to generate $311 million and employ 2,347 people only for its construction.
The Catawba gaming and hospitality facility, once operational, will have a direct economic impact of $308 million annually and will employ 2,600 workers. A further $77.3 million per year is estimated to be the indirect effect on the local business, with another $42.8 million per year in induced impact from employer expenditures.
Catawba Needs a State Compact to Offer Class III Gaming
The casino resort that is expected to open doors midway through 2021 will initially feature around 1,300 machines, as the tribe needs a state compact and a federal approval to be able to offer Class III gaming which includes all other forms of gambling, including casino-style gambling. And this is only one of the hurdles in front of the Catawba Nation’s project.
The second one is the lawsuit filed by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in April, but its hope to stop the Catawba from building were denied in federal court. The tribe which is the operator of the only two casinos in North Carolina then filed a second lawsuit against the US Department of Interior for granting the land into trust for the project.
Opposition for the project also comes from local activist groups who fear a casino will push crime rates up and continue to advocate against it, asking residents to sign a petition to encourage Governor Roy Cooper not to allow the tribe Class III gaming.