The Ottumwa Courier

AP Iowa

June 23, 2013

Legal costs soar for Sioux City casino nonprofit

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Documents show that legal costs for Missouri River Historical Development soared last year as the local nonprofit group and its former casino partner battled in court over their disintegrated contractual relationship.

The Sioux City Journal reported ( ) that the nonprofit group spent $324,769 in legal fees in 2012, according to figures the organization released to the Journal last week. That's more than six times the $50,795 reported in 2011. A year before that, the nonprofit's fees were $11,641.

The nonprofit and Argosy Sioux City riverboat casino operator Penn National Gaming Co. have been locked in a legal battle over their contract for more than a year.

Penn National Gaming sued the nonprofit in September, claiming the group breached exclusivity in their operating agreement by negotiating with other casino operators.

That followed a lawsuit the nonprofit filed against Penn in an effort to block the riverboat casino operator from threatening legal action against other gambling operators that tried to talk to the nonprofit. A federal judge dismissed the case.

"I don't think the cost of litigation is going to hamper us in any way," Missouri River Historical Development President Mark Monson told the Journal. "It's unfortunate we have to spend it."

Penn spokeswoman Karen Bailey declined to comment to the newspaper for the story.

The nonprofit's operating agreement with Penn expired in July. After months of stalled talks on a contract extension that would have included a land casino, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission took the unprecedented step of putting the Woodbury County license up for bid.

In April, the new land license was awarded to Missouri River Historical Development and its new partner, Sioux City Entertainment, the developer of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino planned for downtown Sioux City.

Penn, one of two other applicants for the land license, had proposed a Hollywood-themed casino in downtown Sioux City or rural Woodbury County.

Iowa law requires casino operators to share the state license with qualified nonprofit organizations, which also collect and distribute a portion of casino profits for charitable and civic purposes.


Information from: Sioux City Journal,

Text Only
AP Iowa
  • Chairman: Branstad staff pressured board on hires DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The chairman of the state's Public Employment Relations Board said Thursday that two aides to Gov. Terry Branstad pressured the board to hire a friend of the administration, in the latest accusation that top government officia

    April 18, 2014

  • Police still hunt escaped inmate in central Iowa CLIVE, Iowa (AP) — Officers are still looking for a prisoner who escaped in suburban Des Moines while being transferred for a court hearing in a burglary case. Polk County Sheriff's Lt. Brent Long said Friday that 37-year-old Kenny Bevard remained at

    April 18, 2014

  • Iowa sex offender gets 18 years for child porn SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa man twice convicted of child sex offenses have been given 18 years in prison for possessing child pornography. Prosecutors say 49-year-old Kevin Ammerman, of Clarion, was sentenced on Wednesday in U.S. District Court i

    April 18, 2014

  • Court: Man can seek office despite conviction DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A split Iowa Supreme Court issued a ruling Tuesday that allows a Des Moines man to run for state Senate and affirms that second-offense drunken driving is not an infamous crime as defined by the Iowa Constitution. The opinion

    April 16, 2014

  • Iowa Public Radio seeks more from universities IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Public Radio is asking for additional funding from the state's three public universities, a departure from a plan to become financially independent of them, according to a proposal released Tuesday. IPR is asking the Iowa

    April 16, 2014

  • Ex-Iowa doctor gets jail for violating probation HAMPTON, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa doctor convicted of sexual exploitation has been given jail time for violating his probation. Forty-one-year-old Brian Hansen was found in contempt of court on Monday in Franklin County District Court. He'd violated

    April 16, 2014

  • Regents considering Branstad order on settlements IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — More than three weeks later, the Iowa Board of Regents is still figuring out how to comply with Gov. Terry Branstad's order to post employee settlement agreements online. In an executive order on March 24, Branstad ordered his

    April 16, 2014

  • Medical marijuana bill may surface in Senate DES MOINES (AP) -- Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal says he will sponsor a bill legalizing the sale of medical marijuana in Iowa, reviving an issue once thought dead this year. The persistent efforts of woman who have children with epilepsy chang

    April 15, 2014

  • Iowa investigators join Story County death probe CAMBRIDGE, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is helping local officers probe the death of a woman in the Story County town of Cambridge. Her body was found by officers around 10 p.m. Monday. The woman's name and other details ab

    April 15, 2014

  • Sioux City council advances pit bull proposal SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — The Sioux City Council has advanced a proposal to change the city ordinance that bars pit bulls from inside city limits. The measure was advanced at Monday's meeting on a second vote and faces a third and final vote next Monda

    April 15, 2014

AP National