The Alabama House of Representatives filed two bills pertaining to gaming in Alabama on Thursday. One is a constitutional amendment, and the other is the gambling legislation itself.

The legislation was unveiled at a press conference on Wednesday. The two bills are sponsored by State Reps. Chris Blackshear (R-Phenix City) and Andy Whitt (R-Harvest), and have been referred to the Alabama House Committee on Economic Development and Tourism.

SEE ALSO: Lawmakers unveil plans to legalize gambling in Alabama — 'Above all, we believe the people deserve the right to vote on this issue'

Earlier, 1819 News reported on key specifics of the gaming bill, and up until Thursday evening, all indications pointed toward the major gaming entity in the state, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians (PCI), favoring the bill.

Now, according to sources within the legislature, that is no longer the case, and those sources have told 1819 News that PCI is requesting amendments to both the constitutional amendment (HB151) and the enabling legislation (HB152) and asking members to oppose the legislation if the amendments are not added. The amendments requested by PCI and shared with 1819 News are first to HB152 and second to HB151.

This Amendment only allows the exchange in the compact from a Northeast property to a location in Birmingham. The Northeast property would still be available to be bid out under this amendment.

This change is supported by the current Birmingham track Owner Lewis Benefield and is a positive Economic impact for the State of Alabama. Rather than accepting a bid as presented and only requiring a $35M investment, The state can [ensure] what is best for Alabama throughout compact negotiations-including what type of facility would support the most jobs, creating maximum tourism opportunities, and even requiring the use of minority contractors for the project.

House Bill 152 Enabling Legislation Amendments:

Lines 1081-1082 Delete "one in the portion of the City of Birmingham that is within Jefferson County."

Lines 1083 Delete the "and" before "one in Mobile County" and add the following after "Mobile County":", and one in a county that is wholly located north of U.S. Route 411 and that borders the State of Georgia, or a municipality within such a county."

Lines 1409-1410 Delete "a county that is wholly located north of U.S. Route 411 and that borders the State of Georgia, or a municipality within such a county" and replace it with "a portion of the City of Birmingham that is within Jefferson County."

Page 3, line 82? Delete "may with "shall"

Dr. Lewis Benefield, identified in the PCI request, vehemently denied agreeing to these amendments. He told 1819 News on Friday afternoon, "The statement released by the Poarch Creek tribe indicating I support or agreed to any amendment to HB151/152 as filed is untrue. Any other suggestion is false."

In a statement given to 1819 News, PCI confirmed its issues with the proposed legislation and said that unless it can compromise on the amendments, the tribe will oppose the legislation.

"This legislation is obviously the product of hard work. However, we have well-founded concerns about how it will affect our Tribe and our businesses in its current form. We remain optimistic that we can have detailed conversations with legislators and make changes that will continue to allow us to create jobs, spur economic development, attract tourism dollars, and help our neighbors across the State in times of need," the Poarch Band of Creek Indians said.

SEE ALSO: First look at Alabama gaming bill

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