Seminole Tribe Betrayed By Florida’s Five Proposed Blackjack Casinos
Mar 8, 2011
The Seminole Tribe, which has the exclusive right to run blackjack games, is against new legislation that would create five new mega-casino resorts in Florida.
Two state Senators in Florida, announced that they filed legislation which would permit five mega-casino hotels in key tourist locations throughout the state. Senators Maria Sachs (Democrat) and Dennis Jones (Republican) are the vice-chair and chairman of the powerful Regulated Industries Committee, which controls the state’s gambling industry.
Florida’s current casino strategy only permits the existence of racinos (horse racing + slot machines).
The likelihood that the new legislation would become law is high; since the state has almost 9% unemployment and most politicians seem in favor of the new proposal which limits gambling devices to 10% of the total area of each proposed casino resort. The tens of thousands of new jobs which the mega-resorts are sure to create are not ignored by the politicians as well as the voters.
There are however two mighty foes standing in their way: The Seminole Native American Tribe is already very unhappy because of the potential loss of its monopoly on blackjack card games; and Mickey Mouse, who is now a Black Belt in the ancient arts of the Ninja from Tokyo Disney World, is against five mega-resorts which will compete with his Florida properties. Donald Duck, currently a professional blackjack card counter in Macau, refused to comment on the story.
Currently outside the southern area of the state, all four casinos are located and operated on sovereign lands of the Seminole Tribe of Florida. In 2010 Florida entered into a five year agreement with the Tribe allowing blackjack card games but no craps or roulette at Seminole casinos.
Seminole Nation agreed to pay Florida $1 billion over the five years as long as the Tribes gets the exclusive rights to control blackjack and baccarat within the state. If Florida passes the legislation, which will require each casino to pay $50 million per year in licensing fees alone, the Seminole Nation will no longer have a monopoly. The Tribal Council is firmly against any new laws about blackjack that will alter its current monopoly on the game.
The Tribe spokesman, Mr. Gary Birner, stated during a press conference – “If the Legislature wants to allow in new entities, it will have to decide if it’s a good tradeoff. Are they going to make enough to make up for the assured payments from the Tribe?”
The legislation will be up for a vote sometime before summer of 2011.
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