KINGS MOUNTAIN, N.C. (CN2 NEWS) Things are moving forward with the Catawba Indian Nation’s new gaming facility in Kings Mountain, North Carolina. The Catawba Nation’s Tribal-State Compact with the State of North Carolina allows the state to share revenue generated by the new casino, “Two Kings Casino Resort.”
With the compact agreement with the State of North Carolina complete the Catawba Indian Nation is moving quickly on it’s new Kings Mountain casino planning to host a pre-launch that will feature 500 slot machines the first week of July. The nation’s Chief Bill Harris says the question on most people’s minds is, how did this South Carolina tribe, end up north of the border?
“Catawba was a very, very instrumental in being in the battle of Kings Mountain. We were the scouts. So, you had battles around this area, what happened there was they cut the supply lines for Cornwallis and he had to retreat,” says Chief Harris.
That compact, recognizing the Catawba’s ancestral ties to lands throughout North Carolina. Chief Harris also sharing that there is an economic need in Cleveland County. He says once the textile industry left, jobs went with it. Right off Interstate 85, nearly 35 miles away from Charlotte — over the next ten years, the facility is expected to bring in more than 3,000 jobs. The county and other investors, will have the opportunity to build tangentially.
Cleveland County Commissioner Johnny Hutchins saying, “This project will prove to be a long-lasting and sustainable economic engine for the residents of Cleveland County, we are excited about the expedited timeline”.
“So it became a community project, not just something for the Catawba Nation. Because what the community saw was, they needed an economic catalyst and this is going to be the economic catalyst,” says Chief Harris.
The Catawba Indian Nation has said what started as 16 acres, they’re hoping to grow overtime and this new facility will eventually bring 4,000 jobs into this county’s community. They say that the land is all an economic investment that will help grow the Nation.
“This will actually open the door to,…and create revenue that will then, if you diversify this and those monies, it will go into other businesses. So, with that now you have a stable economic economy,” says Chief Harris.
Chief Harris shared that Catawba doesn’t have it’s own businesses. He hopes that this new opportunity will strengthen the Nation’s economy and provide for generations to come, reflecting on what this project truly means.
“It means the righting of a wrong. That goes back to 1840, to be honest with you. Catawba has been fighting for for what it’s due, for what it is owed since 1840. And it’s been a long hard fight…. I believe the U.S. government did what it was supposed to do.… I think they made mistakes in the past, and they won’t make those mistakes again.”
In the video above, CN2’s Rachel Richardson is with the Catawba Nation’s chief – taking a look at the grounds – and talking about what’s to come for the nearly 3-million dollar project.