The Associated Industries of Florida is celebrating the Legislature for ratifying the 2021 Seminole Gaming Compact.
AIF Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs Brewster Bevis released a statement after the House’s vote Wednesday to approve Gov. Ron DeSantis‘ deal with the Seminole Tribe and a bill to implement it (SB 2A). The Senate ratified the measure Tuesday.
DeSantis and the Tribe signed the Compact last month, creating a new framework for Florida to get a cut of gaming revenue.
“On behalf of AIF and our members, I commend Governor Ron DeSantis for his leadership on this issue and Senate President Wilton Simpson and House Speaker Chris Sprowls for their decisive action in reconvening the legislature and prioritizing the ratification of this compact that will benefit our state,” Bevis said. “It is truly a great day in the state of Florida as our leaders continue to drive our economy forward with their bold, action-oriented leadership.”
AIF, which called the agreement a “historic” compact, represents business interests in Florida. The association was created in 1920 to foster an economic climate to grow and develop industry and business in the state.
The 30-year Compact will bring in a guaranteed $500 million each of the first five years and more than $6 billion by 2030.
“This Compact also ensures that gaming profits are reinvested right here in Florida,” Bevis said. “In addition, this Compact keeps Florida family-friendly by delivering the most revenue share with the least amount of gaming.”
The Compact’s implementing bill still awaits DeSantis’ signature. And after passing that hurdle, it will head to the U.S. Department of the Interior for approval under the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
It will almost inevitably face a battle in court. No Casinos, the group behind Amendment 3 in 2018 that requires voters to approve gambling expansions in Florida, argues it’s unconstitutional for the Legislature and the Governor to approve the deal themselves because the Compact allows mobile sports betting.