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At first mention there would appear to be little common ground between the chain of Hard Rock restaurants and the people who belong to the Catawba Indian Nation. In fact many would consider these two entities to be at opposite ends of the spectrum but there may soon be an important element that connects the Catawba tribe and the Hard Rock name.

Recently reports jave been broadcast that state the SC tribe has entered into serious business negotiations with the executives of the Hard Rock conglomerate. It is being hoped that the Catawbas will win approval to use the Hard Rock Brand as the main marketing tool for their latest southeastern casino proposal.

Costs for the nearly 2 million square foot establishment have been estimated in the range of $6-7 million dollars. Although the costs and square footage may be adjusted during the final planning stages the supporters of the project boast that the gambling complex will offer immense opportunities for employment. When the casino is finally open and fully functional there should be a need for 3500-4500 employees.

were placed in the trust, the tribe could move ahead with plans for a 1.8-million square-foot facility that would have a casino and hotel. The estimated cost of the project is about $600 million and the complex could employ as many as 4,000 people.

According to the tribal leader, Chief Bill Harris, it would be a coup to obtain the Hard Rock branding rights. The company already handles the operations for two casino-based resorts that are based in the state of Florida. These resorts are owned by the Seminole Indian tribe.

Chief Harris realizes that the Florida Seminole tribe has established an exemplary business standard that is widely recognized in the industry. The Seminole tribe has been able to parlay their Hard Rock branding opportunity into a money-making game plan. Now the NC Catawba tribe is seeking the same chance to boost the public profile for the new casino they are planning to build.

While officials for the Hard Rock Industry remain close-mouthed concerning possible negotiations Chief Harris has announced that the Catawba tribe has been holding discussions among the members of the group’s economic development committee.

Catawba tribe members in SC hope to construct a gambling casino that will be located close to Kings Mountain in North Carolina. The Catawba tribe itself is based in the sister state of South Carolina.

At present North Carolina is home to one Indian owned/operated casino. This is the famed Harrah’s Cherokee Casino which is located near Cherokee, North Carolina. Ownership and operations of the casino-resort are held by the Eastern Cherokee Indian tribe. Significant government officials in North Carolina have thus far spoken out in opposition against the new casino proposal.

The Catawba tribe has also been embroiled in legal battles with the state of South Carolina which also wants to prevent the casino from becoming a reality. An earlier lawsuit was settled in 1993 when the group made the decision not to be included in the federal laws that currently regulate Native American gambling and gaming establishments.

In order to bring their plans to fruition the Catawba tribe is expanding their partnership network to include other Native American tribes. They have negotiated working relationships with the Seminoles. Now they have brought the Lumbee group into the mix, even though the federal government does not officially recognize this specific tribal group. Recently the Catawbas have been in business discussions with members of the Seneca tribe that hails from New York.

Incorporating the popular Hard Rock Brand into a casino is practically guaranteed to generate a buzz of interest. The Catawba tribe is committed to forging ahead with the construction of this new casino as soon as all necessary government approval has been obtained.

At the present time the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs continues to study the submitted trust application from the Catawba tribe. The application is requesting a total of 16 acres of Kings Mountain property to be placed in a tribal federal trust. This would be a crucial step that must be achieved before any construction plans to move forward.