After a stalemate of several months, Florida Senate Regulated Industries Chairman Rob Bradley said he and House Regulatory Affairs Chairman Jose Felix Diaz recently met with Tim Cerio, Governor Rick Scott’s top lawyer, and officials of the Seminole Tribe regarding compact negotiations.
The state and the tribe have been at odds over the issue of banked card games, which the tribe offers exclusively at five of its seven Florida casinos, in return for giving the state $1 billion over five years. That portion of the 2010 agreement expired July 31, but it gave the Seminoles 90 days to phase out the games.
“We are now actively engaged in discussions back and forth with the tribe,” Bradley said. “There is a lot of activity and we’re moving forward. I’m hopeful that we can reach a point where we have something to offer to the membership to consider and debate.”
Both sides want to finalize a new pact before that time period runs out on October 1. “The closer we get to the deadline, the more pressure is put upon the parties to find a resolution. Deadlines are very useful in that way. I would anticipate that if a deal is to be had, it would be done within the deadlines contained in the agreements,” Bradley said.