The five year deal that the Seminole tribe cut with the state government of Florida is about to expire and the tribe has been unable to work out a new deal with state legislators. The earlier deal which the tribe made in 2010 gave the Seminole tribe exclusive rights to provide blackjack and other popular card games as their 3 casinos in Broward County and their other casinos in Tampa and Immokalee.
The tribe got exclusive rights by working out a deal with the state where the tribe guaranteed $1 billion in revenue. The deal is expected to expire in July 2015 and if the tribe is unable to work out a new deal with the state government, then it will have to stop offering blackjack and other casino games. If a new deal is not made, the Seminole tribe will have a grace period of three months to offer blackjack services, after which it becomes illegal.
The tribe has made it clear to Governor Rick Scott and other government officials that it has no plans to stop its blackjack offerings. Blackjack and other casino games have played a major role in establishing Seminole’s casinos as some of the most popular casinos in the state. Seminole tribe officials have challenged the government on the basis that Florida regulators have already violated gambling regulations by permitting South Florida tracks to provide digital versions of card games.
Seminole Tribal Council Chairman James Billie and his team prepared a 5 page letter that requests for a meeting between state officials and the tribal council. The Chairman has given the state 30 days to see if a mutual agreement can be reached, failing which a case will filed in the federal court. The Seminole tribe has assured the state government that as a gesture of good faith it will continue to keep its promise and make payments to the state for the card games it offers in its casinos.
Sen. Rob Bradley has tried hard to work out a mutual agreement and extend the tribe’s contract for another 12 months but has been unable to close the new deal. The senator is in charge of overseeing the gambling regulatory committee and denies that the state had violated the contract it had with the tribe. However, Governor Rick Scott is yet to acknowledge the tribe’s five page letter and provide them with a response.