The Seminole Indian Tribe in Florida is close to signing a deal with the state that would allow them to run full Vegas style gaming casinos.
Sources in the government revealed that Charlie Crist, the Florida state governor, has offered the Seminoles the ability to run all Class 3 games including slots, blackjack, and baccarat. The state, in return would receive a piece of the profits from the new games.
Up until now the the Florida government has not seen one dime from Indian tribe gaming since the Seminoles began their Florida casino expansion many years ago.
Broward County, Florida passed a law that allows Class 3 slots in their parimutuels and since they have been installed earlier in the year they have failed to meet financial expectations. Their failure is a direct result of the Seminoles, who run much higher quality entertainment complexes that include slots and poker rooms.
According to sources who spoke with reporters from the Miami Herald the deal Crist offered would give the state $50 million the first year, $75 million the second year, and $100 million the third year following the installation of the table games.
Crist is not necessarily pro-gambling in his state, however, he is in a situation where if he does not make a deal with the Tribe the Seminoles will get full gaming anyway as a result of a federal lawsuit they filed earlier in the year. The ruling in the lawsuit concluded that because Broward county voters voted to allows Class 3 style games, the Seminoles also should be allowed to offer the games. Florida was given 60 days to come to a deal with the Seminoles, if they did not the Seminoles would be able to offer the games without the state getting a piece of the pie.
As a result of the expanded gambling in Broward and the proliferation of the Seminole Indian tribe casinos around the state, Miami has put on the ballot a law that would allow Vegas style slots in their county. That vote will happen in July and is expected to pass with ease.
The reality of the situation in Florida is that within the next five years they could be competing with Las Vegas to be the casino gambling capital in the United States.