Casino Watch Focus has reported that multiple Florida Mayors have joined to campaign against gambling expansion measures, including being in support of a renewed Seminole Compact that would continue to allow exclusive rights to the various gambling table games in exchange for revenues. The last effort to renew the Compact was by way of legislation, but the session came to an abrupt close three days early due to a budget standoff centering around Medicaid. Another June session is likely given a budget must be passed, and Now the Tampa Tribune is joining others who view a renewed compact as a way to stem the tide of expanded gambling in Florida. An online source explains:
The Tampa Tribune has called for state legislators to renew their billion-dollar deal with the Seminole Tribe of Florida, an agreement that enables the tribe to exclusively offer blackjack at five of its seven resorts, including the two highly profitable Hard Rock casinos one of which is just east of Tampa at the intersection of two major highways.
The paper’s editorial points out that the agreement has benefitted the state to the tune of more than $1 billion “while preventing the spread of high stakes gambling elsewhere in Florida.”
Legislators will return to Tallahassee in June to work on the budget and the current deal with the tribe is scheduled to expire in July. Action on the Seminole compact was lost in the “ugly meltdown” at the end of the recent regulator session.
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