The Ho-Chunk Nation has reported this week that it is moving forward with plans for its proposed $405m off-reservation casino in Wisconsin. As part of the process, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is scheduled to hold a public hearing which will consider the draft environmental impact statement for the project. The meeting takes place on December 11 at the Aldrich Middle School auditorium in Beloit.

Speaking to the Janesville Gazette, tribal spokesperson Collin Price explained in more detail what will be discussed at the hearing. He said: “We’re going to continue to finalize the plan, the layout and all the design aspects of it. We’re confident that all the information, when looked at collectively, is a good thing for the nation and the community. We haven’t even considered a denial or some circumstances that would stop the project.”

The nation is aiming to develop its new casino within the two-part determination provisions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) which stipulates that approval has to be forthcoming from both the state governor and the BIA.

Beloit, the location of the proposed gaming development, is situated close to the Wisconsin border with Illinois, circa 170 miles from the nation’s Black River Falls base.