This past Monday the House approved a compact with the Seminole tribe in Florida. The deal approved the tribe to have legalized blackjack and slots at their casinos. The vote was 74-39 in favor of the new gambling compact.
The deal gives the five Seminole casinos the right to have blackjack and other card games. The Hollywood and Tampa Hard Rock facilities are approved for the games as well as the casino in Coconut Creek. This is the third gambling deal created for the Seminoles since 2007 but this one has the support from the tribe as well as the governor and legislature.
For the first fiscal year the new deal will see the state’s budget growing by $435 million in the revenue fund. Lawmakers will be able to use the money for many different purposes instead of like in recent years just for education.
The Seminole casinos now can have blackjack for five years and then the legislature will have to decide to continue the arrangement with the tribe or discontinue blackjack in Florida. The legislature also can expand card games to new venues when the contract is up.