Tyler Bridges, The Advocate

When Harrah’s New Orleans Casino sought a 30-year renewal of its state license to operate last year, the state House asked for too little money, while the Senate demanded too much. That’s the key finding of a study released Tuesday by a New Orleans consulting firm on a measure that was hotly debated during the 2018 legislative session before failing on the final day.

Extending the license is worth between $266 million and $330 million in current dollars, according to the 132-page study by United Professionals Co., which is part of the Sisung Group. That’s the key finding of a study released Tuesday by a New Orleans consulting firm on a measure that was hotly debated during the 2018 legislative session before failing on the final day.

The license gives Harrah’s the right to operate the only land casino in New Orleans.

The study says that extending the license would be worth as little as $266 million to Caesars today if lawmakers in 2054 will demand even more from the casino owner to renew the license at that point. Or it could be worth as much as $330 million to Caesars now if lawmakers in 35 years do not try to extract more from the company.

John Mayeaux, a senior vice president for Sisung, led a four-member group from the consulting firm that studied the casino industry and crunched numbers beginning in November. Caesars provided internal data that the report kept private.

READ MORE…