Florida

Florida Reaches $3 Billion Gambling Deal with Seminole Tribe

The deal would allow the tribe to keep card games such as blackjack at their casinos and permit the addition of table games such as roulette and craps.

Gov. Rick Scott says he and the Seminole tribe have reached a sweeping new gambling deal that will bring billions to the state while allowing an expansion of gambling in South Florida.

Scott announced Monday that he had signed the new agreement. He says it would generate $3 billion for the state over a seven-year period starting in 2017. It must be ratified by the Florida Legislature. Lawmakers start their annual session in January.

The deal would allow the tribe to keep card games such as blackjack at their casinos and permit the addition of table games such as roulette and craps.

The agreement also would allow a track in Palm Beach County to add slot machines. Slots are currently limited to Seminole casinos and tracks in Broward and Miami-Dade.

In a statement released Tuesday, the Seminole Tribe says the agreement will invest in Florida's economy and continue to grow the workforce.

“This new Compact will serve Florida well for years to come," said Seminole Tribe Chairman James Billie. "It not only saves 3,500 jobs, but it will also allow us to work with the state creating 15,000 additional jobs."

The Seminole Tribe of Florida and Seminole Gaming operate seven casinos in Florida, including the Seminole Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood.

The Tribe also owns Hard Rock International, with a total of 204 venues in 64 countries, including 157 cafes, 22 hotels and 11 casinos.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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