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Mississippi Gaming Commission Meeting Minutes: January 19, 2017

The Mississippi Gaming Commission held its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, January 19, 2017, at 9:00 a.m. in the Jackson offices of the Mississippi Gaming Commission. Executive Director Allen Godfrey, Chairman Al Hopkins, and Commissioner Jerry Griffith were in attendance. Commissioner Tom Gresham was absent.  The following matters were considered:


The Mississippi Gaming Commission approved a license for the following:

  • Gaming Partners International USA, Inc., as a manufacturer and distributor.


The Mississippi Gaming Commission approved findings of suitability for the following persons and entities:

  • Mr. Scott A. Warren, Regional Sr. Director of Finance of SW Gaming LLC d/b/a Harlow’s Casino Resort and Magnolia Hill, LLC d/b/a Riverwalk Casino and Hotel

  • Mr. Linster W. Fox, Chairman of the Audit Committee, Everi Holdings, Inc.

  • Barbara D. Skrmetta and Dennis M. Skrmetta, Landlords – BTN, LLC d/b/a Boomtown Casino Biloxi

  • Candace Hopper, Heath Hopper, James Williams, Pamela Williams and Thomas B. Holmes, Jr., Landlords of RIH Acquisitions MS II, LLC d/b/a Bally’s Saloon, Hotel & Gambling Hall.


The Commission approved the recommendation of the Executive Director to accept the hearing officer’s decisions with respect to the following:

  • Joseph DeFazio

  • Phat Thanh Nguyen

The Commission approved the recommendation of the Executive Director to decline to review and accept the hearing examiner’s decision regarding Shaun Johnston.


The Commission approved the recommendation of the Executive Director to decline to review and accept the hearing officer’s decision with respect to the following:

  • Player Dispute Hearing – Christian and Michelle Shriver v. Boyd Biloxi, LLC d/b/a IP Casino Resort Spa



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About this Author

Thomas Shepherd, Gaming Attorney, IAGA President, 2014, Jones Walker Law FIrm

Tommy Shepherd is a partner in the firm’s Business and Commercial Transactions Practice Group. As an accomplished gaming attorney, he served as President of the International Association of Gaming Advisors (IAGA) in 2014.

Tommy represents major casino companies, Native American tribes, manufacturers, suppliers, and financial institutions regarding all matters relating to the development, financing, licensing and operation of gaming and resort facilities. His extensive experience in such matters includes public-private leases, financings, land use approvals, statutory and regulatory...

Chris Pace, Business, Commercial Transactions Attorney, Jones Walker Law FIrm

Chris Pace is an attorney in the firm's Business & Commercial Transactions Practice Group and practices from the firm's Jackson office. He concentrates his practice in the areas of project finance and economic development law, state and local government law, economic development incentives and gaming law.

His clients include both county and municipal governmental bodies, as well as new and expanding business concerns such as a large steel company investing over $1 billion in a new facility, and a new regional beverage supplier investing millions of dollars to expand its existing operations. Mr. Pace has negotiated and documented various economic incentives including property, sales, use, income, and franchise tax incentives, and other incentives related to tax exempt and taxable bond financing. In the course of his work, he has assisted clients in negotiating and implementing incentives with the Mississippi Development Authority, the Mississippi Department of Revenue, and other state and local governmental entities. Mr. Pace has also negotiated and implemented economic incentives with numerous county and city governments, including the implementation of complex fee-in-lieu of property tax agreements which are available only for projects involving investments of $100 million or more.