Nevada Gaming board recommends sale of Carson Valley Inn to Michael Pegram | NevadaAppeal.com

Nevada Gaming board recommends sale of Carson Valley Inn to Michael Pegram

The Nevada Gaming Control Board on Wednesday recommended approval of Michael Pegram’s application to buy the Carson Valley Inn in Minden.

Pegram, a principal owner of Bodines Casino, 5650 S. Carson St., told the board he plans a complete renovation of the casino area, including updating some 200 slot machines and converting an existing bar into a sports bar.

Pegram’s gaming lawyer, Bud Hicks, said plans include immediately renovating Fiona’s, CVI’s high-end restaurant.

Pegram will own 74.75 percent of the stock with the Carano family of Reno – who are already partners in Bodines – holding 22.75 percent and gaming veteran Richard Burdock, who helped mediate the purchase, the remaining 2.5 percent.

Pegram said the renovation will take about eight weeks and, when completed, will reduce the total number of slots from 590 to about 550. He said that, hopefully, CVI will actually increase its total number of employees.

Pegram said he intends to “beef up” advertising in target California markets as well as locally.

“There are lots of marketing opportunities,” he told the board. “I know we’re up against it a little bit but we’re in it for the long haul. We’ve got plenty of capital to survive.”

Hicks said Pegram’s plan is to do the same thing for CVI as he did for Bodines, which underwent a total reconstruction.

“It’s going to be a real positive for the community,” he said.

Hicks said it’s an especially rewarding project when so many other smaller casino operations are having deep financial troubles, many being taken over by banks and even shut down.

“It’s nice to see someone doing something like this in these economic times,” he said. “Here’s a guy who’s actually putting money into a property.”

The plan includes taking over operation of the Carson Valley Market, the convenience store adjacent to CVI, and installing seven slot machines there.

Pegram is a successful Arizona businessman who owns, among other things, a number of McDonald’s franchises and thoroughbred racehorses.

The recommendation goes to the Gaming Commission later this month for final approval.