Cha-Ching! Billion-Dollar Gambling Deal Done - NBC 6 South Florida

Cha-Ching! Billion-Dollar Gambling Deal Done

Gov. Charlie Crist will sign another deal with the Seminole Indians, but with Legislature approval

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    Cha-Ching! Billion-Dollar Gambling Deal Done
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    Faced with an $11 billion deficit, lawmakers in favor of legalizing and taxing video gaming machines said they have to consider the option, but the prospect angers anti-gambling groups, who say it's an unethical way to raise state revenue.

    Let the confetti fall from the rafters and the infectious sounds of chaotic bells, sirens and whistles fill the air. Florida just hit the jackpot.

    And this time, it should stick.

    Gov. Charlie Crist will sign a 20-year pact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida that will bring in $1.3 billion over the next five years. In exchange the Seminole Indians get to expand gaming at their casinos statewide to include blackjack, chemin de fer, and baccarat. Over the life of the deal, the state could see close to $7 billion in revenue.

    Dare we say Lucky 7.

    "The compact will help improve the quality of life for all Floridians and it could benefit the tribe and all our entire state,'' Crist said at a press conference Tuesday.

    Seminole Tribe leadership approved the revamped deal Monday night, reports the Miami Herald.

    Crist has hammered out two previous deals, but each time they were rebuffed by the Legislature. This time, Senate and House leaders have his back and have assured Crist the deal will get passed this session.

    Seminole casinos like the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood had already set up blackjack despite it technically being illegal. But there is something to be said for making sure a tribal war doesn't break out between the state and the sovereign nation.\

    Crist is expected to sign the deal Wednesday.