he three-judge panel reversed a Missouri Gaming Commission order that Pinnacle could neither replace nor repair the aging Admiral riverboat without applying for a new casino license. That order essentially stripped the license from the President, which is widely expected to fail a mandatory hull inspection in July.
In its order, the panel called the Gaming Commission's approach "confusing," and said "such confusion raises concern that this was a contested case without sufficient process." It sent the matter back to the commission, "for further proceedings."
The ruling has no direct bearing on the Gaming Commission's more recent effort to strip the President's license over its weak financial performance. In that matter, Pinnacle has requested a hearing, which is likely to happen later this spring. But it could open a window for Pinnacle to propose improvements to the President, or even, potentially, to move it to a new site.
The Las Vegas-based gambling company had no comment Tuesday. Through a spokeswoman, Gaming Commission Executive Director Gene McNary said the ruling was only "seeking clarification," and that it is "really of no consequence."