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Mississippi governor OKs inland casino rebuilding after Katrina

[JURIST] Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour [official profile] Monday signed legislation to let the 13 hotel-casinos destroyed by Hurricane Katrina [JURIST report] to be rebuilt 800 feet inland, despite opposition from religious conservatives. The law was approved in a special legislative session [JURIST report] where the Mississippi Legislature [official website] convened to specifically work on the aftermath of the hurricane's devastation. The legislation was passed to provide safety for the casinos and provide jobs for displaced Mississippi workers, 14,000 of whom worked for the coast casinos prior to the hurricane. Mississippi legalized casinos in 1990, but under the Mississippi Gaming Control Act [text] the casinos were only allowed to be built on either the Mississippi River of the Gulf of Mexico. The new law, which will allow the casinos to be rebuilt as mega-resorts, will not affect river casinos. Some casino companies such as Harrah's Entertainment Inc. [corporate website] the world's largest gambling company, have already announced their plans to build a new hotel-casino. AP has more.

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