US Feds calls for reverse on invalidation of Florida’s gambling compact with Seminole Tribe

Federal Government lawyers have appealed to the courts to reverse a decision that invalidated Florida’s gambling compact with the Seminole Tribe.  

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The compact was originally signed between Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Seminole Tribe, which gave the tribe a monopoly on sports betting in the state. 

Calls for reversal on the invalidation of the state’s gaming compact were made by lawyers for the US Department of the Interior, the State of Florida the Seminole Tribe and plaintiffs West Flagler Associates, which owns Magic City Casino and Bonita Springs Poker Room near Naples, Florida.  

The issue for reversal centres around the actions of Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland – who runs the agency overseeing tribal gaming.  

Last year, she took no action and let the compact agreement between the Seminole Tribe and Florida Governor DeSantis take effect, which may have breached her responsibilities under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. This act is a federal law that regulates gambling on Indian lands.  

Per the 30-year agreement approved by Florida’s legislature, the Seminole Tribe agreed to pay the state $2.5bn over the first five years of the compact deal, in exchange for having control over sports betting in the state. 

The agreement also meant the tribe would be allowed to add roulette and craps to its casino operations. 

The compact was initially struck to mitigate a constitutional amendment that prohibits the expansion of gambling outside of tribal land without voter approval.  

It was (and may yet be) intended to work as a so-called hub-and-spoke model for sports betting; a process moving all online sports bets from players located outside of tribal lands through the Seminole Tribe’s servers.  

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