Beloit City Council renews casino agreement with Rock County and Ho-Chunk Nation

Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 9:26 PM CDT
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BELOIT, Wis. (WIFR) - The path to bring the Ho-Chunk Casino to Beloit has been decades in the making, for some, it’s been their lifes work, and they say seeing the proposal enter the home stretch is a huge accomplishment.

“This started in the 90s so it’s like lord it is really going to happen,” Beloit City Councilor Nancy Forbeck said.

“What the Ho-Chunk Nation has planned for this project here in Beloit is a game-changer,” Visit Beloit Executive Director Celestino Ruffini.

A $405 million entertainment facility takes one step closer to the city of Beloit, and the impact it will have is hard to measure.

“The Ho-Chunk Nation is just another chapter to the Beloit success story, and it will just continue propelling us to future wins down the road,” Ruffini said.

Forbeck has lived in Beloit her entire life, she says the first proposal came from a different tribe. She believes bringing Ho-Chunk to the gateway to Wisconsin is the perfect way to cap off decades of work.

“It’s going to be very big I have to say it is like the cherry on top of what has been happening this last decade in Beloit,” Forbeck said.

The venue not only brings a casino, the proposal includes a hotel, waterpark and will allow Beloit to host large-scale events like meetings, conventions and concerts.

“With the construction of this facility we immediately enter the top 30 meeting destinations in the Midwest,” Ruffini said.

With more people flocking to the city, an economic boon is expected for local businesses.

“More people coming to our area the better there’s more opportunity to get our name out there,” Lucy’s #7 Burger Bar General Manager Emily Hopper said.

“I am sure that it will bring in millions of dollars into this community that currently do not exist here,” Ruffini said.

The renewal of the agreement gives the casino time to go through the final steps to approval and allow the city and county to secure finances.

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