Over heavy opposition, commissioners in North Carolina county approve rezoning on land that may become casino

Over heavy opposition, commissioners in North Carolina county approve rezoning on land that may become casino

Article brief provided by WRAL-TV
  • Travis Fain, WRAL-TV
August 21, 2023 9:06 PM

Rockingham County officials approved a zoning request that could pave the way for a casino in the rural county — a win for lawmakers who have been quietly planning a proposed expansion of commercial casinos in the state.

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The county’s Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Monday to rezone 192 acres along U.S. 220 near Madison. The zoning allows for a variety of commercial applications.

The approval came despite heavy opposition from residents who filled six overflow rooms around the county’s governmental center and a seventh location outdoors broadcasting an audio-only feed for the commission’s regular meeting.

Lawmakers haven’t issued a formal proposal, but draft legislation obtained by WRAL last month indicated that they want to legalize commercial casinos in several parts of the state, including Rockingham County.