The family that’s seeking a new gambling license for a casino in Webster County is offering the public a chance to buy into the business. The Kehl family of Dubuque has applied for a gambling license to build the Mineral City Hotel & Casino in downtown Fort Dodge. Dan Kehl says they’re offering “membership units” of 22-hundred and 50 dollars each that would give the public a 50-percent ownership stake if the plan wins approval from the State Racing and Gaming Commission. Kehl says the plan would continue an ownership philosphy they have with the “Mississippi Belle Two” Casino in Clinton Kehl says they have a 50-percent family/public ownership agreement in the Mississippi Belle Two, and also the Catfish Bend Casino in the Burlington-Fort Madison area. Kehl says he thinks having 50-percent of the new casino owned by Iowans will be a plus when the Racing and Gaming Commission decides on awarding new licenses. He says he thinks the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission will look favorably on the Iowa ownership. He points out the commission has a policy requiring all casinos in the state to buy from Iowa vendors and contractors first. Kehl says Webster County residents will get the first shot at buying into the new casino. He says they’re hoping to get a pretty high participation rate out of Webster County, although he says they expect there to be units left over for other Iowans. Kehl says that would raise half of the 25 million dollars they need to start the project. The Kehl proposal is one of ten applications for new licenses filed with the state — so there’s no guarantee the Kehl project will get a license. He says they’re taking subscriptions that say people will buy shares in the project and they won’t take any money from anyone until the win approval for a license. Kehl says investors will be paid a dividend on their investment that’s decided by the board of directors based on a number of factors. The Racing and Gaming Commission will begin deciding who gets the new gambling licenses at their meeting in March.
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