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Political eBriefs 2016

CTBA Political eBrief Wednesday, March 16, 2016

“Voting was typically done in polling places on the Navajo reservation, but in 2014, the county shut down the polling places and adopted a system of mail-in voting. But in San Juan County, the mailing ballots are written only in English, and they don’t provide any way to explain those ballots to Indian voters. Congress needs to act. If you don’t participate in the political process you are not only denied the benefits of government but you become the victims of government." Laughlin McDonald, a lawyer with the ACLU’s Voting Rights Project who has argued many cases on behalf of Native Americans – most recently, Navajo Indians in San Juan County, Utah – in Voice of America News --- “It’s always positive to see casino revenues going up, and there were a lot of factors that combined to make February a good month. Compared to last year, the weather was great and with Leap Year, we had one extra day. We were very pleased with February’s results.” Matt Levinson, chairman of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission, said of Atlantic City’s increase in gamblers and gaming revenue, in Las Vegas Review Journal --- “I am truly grateful for the opportunity to join the Commission and to be a part of its amazing and dedicated team. With the important work ahead of us, I look forward to collaborating with Chairman Chaudhuri and Commissioner Simermeyer as a partner with tribes and tribal regulators to ensure regulatory compliance and protect the integrity of the Indian gaming industry, which is a vital economic development tool for so many tribes.” Attorney and member of the Taos Pueblo Tribe Kathryn Isom-Clause said of her recent appointment to the National Indian Gaming Commission, in Indianz.com

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CTBA Political eBrief Tuesday, March 15, 2016

“When we started planning how to integrate eSports into our casino, there was a question about how everything would mesh, but not anymore. We're seeing the results and it works. We haven't lost track of the importance of the traditional gamblers; they are still our priority. But adding the eSports Lounge is just like adding a nightclub or any other amenity. It has brought a new dimension to the casino floor, and even the people who have never played a video game in their life are intrigued.” Seth Schorr, owner of Fifth Street Gaming and Chairman of Downtown Grand Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, which recently became the first casino to open a dedicated space to video games, in Casino City Times --- “Given how complicated the current daily fantasy sports products are right now, I think the casual sports fan is really eager to see innovation and new products. Not everybody is a stats geek… and most casual sports fans never will be. That’s why this legislation is so concerning. Innovation is desperately needed here but [this law] is only allowing the duopoly to exist.” DFS company Syde Co-Founder Ryan Huss says the $50,000 registration fee approved in Virginia is cost-prohibitive for a startup like his, in ARL Now

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CTBA Political eBrief Monday, March 14, 2016

“It's important for us to have predictability and certainty in the gaming industry in Florida. I would love to be able to use the additional revenue that would come from the Seminole compact to fund some of the higher-education priorities that I have. ... I don't understand why people say it's so complicated. It's not. It can be done.” Florida Senator Joe Negron on the state’s Compact with the Seminole Tribe in WUSF News --- “I don't think the members truly understand just how much leverage the Seminole Tribe has. I don't think the membership truly understands just how complicated federal Indian gaming law is … and how everything that we do here has to be approved by the federal government." Florida Rep. Jose Felix Diaz on the state’s Compact negotiations with the Seminole Tribe in WUSF News

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CTBA Political eBrief Friday, March 11, 2016

“We have a community that would like to grow to support our local businesses. We'd like to see a high school. We'd like to see better parks. Without growth, you can't support this. You have to provide somewhat affordable housing for folks to move out to these areas. That's how you get coaches for Little League.” Travis Lyon, chair of the Alpine Community Planning Group and commercial real estate broker said in support of a proposal that would allow urban and higher-density development in San Diego County’s Cleveland National Forest, in Lost Angeles Times --- “Collectively over the past 20-years we brought over 7-billion directly to the state of Connecticut via the participation of the slot machines, but if you add in all the economic impact of the jobs and the sales tax, were well north of 10-billion dollars.” Tribal Chairman Rodney Butler of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe, which runs Foxwoods Casinos in Mashantucket, Connecticut, told state committee members, arguing in favor of a gaming expansion, in WWLP

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CTBA Political eBrief Thursday, March 10, 2016

“Although we continue to be very concerned about the CFPB's reluctance to consult in a productive manner with Native American tribes, today Mr. Silberman has lent credence to what we have been telling you all this time, and that is tribes are perfectly capable of regulating our own online financial services industry. Our financial products are designed to be very straightforward, more affordable, and easier to pay off.” Chairperson Sherry Treppa of Native American Tribe Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake in PR Newswire --- “The land is currently outside of the city boundaries of Galt. This limits the amount of direct control the council has. If it was in the city limits, both the citizens and the council would have much more direct input on the project. As it is, the city can still mitigate the potential effects of the casino on the city of Galt.” Mayor Mark Crews said of the Wilton Rancheria Proposal in Galt Herald Online

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CTBA Political eBrief Wednesday, March 9, 2016

“Indian gaming holds a significant place in the evolution and history of IGT. We look forward to engaging with our valued tribal partners at the Indian Gaming Tradeshow & Convention. We're focused on providing our tribal customers with the industry's most innovative product and solutions portfolio.” Knute Knudson, IGT Vice President Tribal Relations and Business Development, in Yahoo! Finance --- “Mascots really shouldn't be this important. They shouldn't have to generate this sort of debate, especially when there are so many more urgent issues in my community. But their presence makes addressing those issues more difficult. Sports mascots themselves are not the reason my community continues to suffer with things like clean water, or lack of it, poverty, suicide, mass incarceration — they are all byproducts of the same sort of colonial culture that is responsible for these sorts of things.” CBC Radio pop culture critic Jesse Wente in CBC Radio

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CTBA Political eBrief Tuesday, March 8, 2016

“This bill, which was passed by super majorities of both chambers, will empower Virginia to regulate this emerging industry and keep consumers safe from abuses.” Brian Coy, spokesman for the Virginia governor's office, said of the state’s newly-signed DFS regulations, which make Virginia the first state to instate a regulatory framework, in ESPN --- “My understanding is this is just simply an effort to create some legal boundaries and guidelines around the fantasy sports practice that many Hoosiers enjoy, relative to the NFL particularly. And so we’ll take a look at it, give it a fair-minded look.” Indiana Governor Mike Pence said of a regulatory bill that the legislature has sent to his desk, in WTHITV10.com

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CTBA Political eBrief Monday, March 7, 2016

“We, as an industry, need to level up on all fronts. We need to bring on stronger team owners, have more organization, and be more like a long-term league, like the NBA or the NFL. If that happens, there’s no telling where eSports could go.” Clinton Foy, managing director of Crosscut Ventures and chairman of Immortals, an eSports gaming team, in the Orange County Register --- “Going into today we knew full well that the gaming bills were on life support. The House was hoping for a miracle, but by the close of the day we saw one was not coming and had no option but to pull the plug.” Florida Rep. Jose Felix Diaz, a Miami Republican who was part of the state's team that negotiated with the Seminole tribe, said of the failed compact in WUSF News ---“The challenge for regulators, policymakers and the casino industry is to build an effective framework for bringing these new platforms into the fold without strangling the very qualities that make them innovative in the first place.” American Gaming Association CEO Geoff Freeman said of daily fantasy sports companies in Reviewed-Casinos.com

CTBA Political eBrief Monday, March 7, 2016 - Read More…

CTBA Political eBrief Friday, March 4, 2016

“This project was ill-conceived from the start and failed to adequately take into account the input of the Karuk tribe which has managed these forests since the beginning of time. We will not allow the forest service to further degrade our fisheries, water quality, or sacred sites while ignoring our call for community fire protection.” Karuk Chairman Russell “Buster” Attebery said of Karuk’s suit filed in federal court challenging a massive post-fire logging plan in Klamath National Forest that will increase fire danger, degrade water quality, and harm at-risk salmon populations, in Native News Online --- “My responsibility was to work to get a Compact done. My team put together a very good Compact for the citizens of our state. It’s up to the Legislature to make their decision on what they want to do. According to the Seminoles, if the Compact is not passed, 3,700 people are going to lose their jobs.” Florida Governor Rick Scott said of the state’s Compact with the Seminole Tribe, in Florida Politics

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CTBA Political eBrief Thursday, March 3, 2016

“We have seen consistent growth in tribal contributions for more than a year now, giving us further optimism for the future of state regulated gaming in Arizona. This sustained growth is a positive sign not only for our state’s economy, but most importantly for the crucial programs this funding supports.” Director of the Arizona Department of Gaming Daniel Bergin said in ParkerPioneer.net --- “Some of the biggest swaths of invalid signatures were people who weren’t registered to vote. Some of the technical problems that were fairly serious, in our view, were around the circulators’ oaths. It was clear just by looking at the documents that somebody had a stack of petitions and somebody was just notarizing them.” Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap said of two of the state’s disqualified ballot campaigns – one to legalize marijuana and one to give a Las Vegas promoter exclusive right to build a casino – and the potential forgery of signatures, in Portland Press Herald

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CTBA Political eBrief Wednesday, March 2, 2016

“The disappointing thing for me is that these decisions regarding gaming should be made here, in the Legislature amongst elected officials, not in a courtroom, not in an administrative hearing.” Florida Senator Rob Bradley (R-Fleming Island) said of Senate Appropriation Committee’s move to table Florida’s compact with the Seminole Tribe, in The Tampa Bay Times --- “There are a lot of different factions in the Legislature, ranging from those who oppose gambling to those who want a massive, historically large expansion of gambling in Florida. There aren’t enough votes to pass the gambling bill, given all the infighting. While I can’t say the gambling bill is officially dead, other committee members say its return was unlikely.” Florida Senate Appropriations Chair tom Lee (R-Brandon) said of Florida’s stalled compact with the Seminole Tribe, in The Sun Sentinel

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CTBA Political eBrief Tuesday, March 1, 2016

“This portion of the project means a lot to the tribe because it’s providing more job opportunities for members of the community. Our tribe takes pride in being one of the largest employers in Santa Barbara County, and the growth of our enterprise brings significant benefits to the community.” Chumash Tribal Chairman Vincent Armenta in The Santa Barbara Independent --- “Nobody gets anything if there is not mutual accord and consent and agreement. I imagine that … you would very likely see a negotiation between the tribe and the pari-mutuel facilities who benefit under the bill. And, if there is an inequity … that inequity can be cured by contract.” Florida Representative Matt Gaetz (R-Fort Walton Beach), who is also the Chairman of the House Finance and Tax Committee, said of a Florida gambling bill that would ratify the $3B agreement with the Seminole Tribe and allow pari-mutuels in at least five counties to add slot machines, in Palm Beach Post

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CTBA Political eBrief Monday, February 29, 2016

“The structure at the Bureau of Indian Education is broken. My legislation will ensure that the administrators, teachers, and students from tribal communities are being listened to and that their needs are being met. It is an important first step for better transparency and accountability for schools across Indian Country.” U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, said of his bill: Reforming American Indian Standards of Education Act, in Native News Online --- “We just have to get through all the court-ordered proceedings, so there is nothing else we can do until we are done with that process. We can’t say how big the hotel-casino will be and we can’t say when it will start.” Maryann McGovran, North Fork Mono tribal chairwoman, said of the U.S. District Court judge’s orders for Enterprise casino to re-enter into negotiations with Yuba County, in Sierra Star

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CTBA Political eBrief Friday, February 26, 2016

“Casinos around the country have been adding everything from tattoo parlors and martial arts fights to craft beers and hipper shopping to try to draw in millennials. There’s also been a broad push to make digital gaming options less like old-fashioned slot machines and more like video games, with more interactivity on the behalf of the player.” Brad Tuttle on Detroit’s Greektown Casino, which is being rebranded as JACK in a marketing effort to attract millennials, in Money “Card rooms no longer rotate the bank in the playing of their games and allow so-called third-party proposition players, essentially a partner of the card rooms, to maintain that bank. This practice directly violates the California Constitution and penal code and the tribal exclusivity granted to tribes by California voters.” Leland Kinter, chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintum Nation, said of the California Card Rooms; the California Bureau of Gambling Control issued a letter on stating that the agency will no longer accept card room applications for new table games “that do not require ‘continuous and systematic rotation” of the player-dealer position, in Online Poker Report

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CTBA Political eBrief Thursday, February 25, 2016

“Business is outstanding and is reflective of … our ability to market Thunder Valley as a destination resort, which makes hotel rooms obviously more attractive.” Doug Elmets, a spokesman for the Lincoln-area casino, which plans to renovate the hotel’s existing 297 rooms, in The Sacramento Bee --- “The Seminoles are building a national and global brand. They’re trying to demonstrate to other states around the country that they’re good corporate citizens and good partners. I believe that litigation and conflict with the state of Florida is not a good thing for the tribe.” Florida House Finance and Tax Chairman Matt Gaetz said in CBS Miami

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