California Propositions 68 and 70!
A YES vote meant - Slot machines would be authorized at 16 specific race tracks and card rooms, unless all Indian tribes with existing tribal state gambling compacts agree to certain terms within 90 days. Under either scenario, local governments within the state would receive new gambling revenues, to be used primarily for additional child protective, police and firefighting services.
A NO vote meant - Slot machines would not be authorized at racetracks and card rooms. Indian tribes would continue to be subject to current tribal-state gambling compacts. Local governments would not receive new gambling revenues.
A YES vote meant – Tribes entering new or amended tribal-state gambling compact would make payments to the state based on their gambling income. These compacts would last 99 years and place no limits on the types or number of casino games.
A NO vote meant – Tribes would continue to be subject to existing tribal-state gambling compacts which require various types of payments to the state. Existing compacts will last up to 26 more years and place some limits on the types and number of casino games.
Well, there are two sides to every story. James P. Sweeney, reporter, Copley News Service – San Diego’s “Union Tribune” headlines his November 2nd 9:33 pm new story – ‘About face for California tribes’ political fortunes’.
“Sacramento – Nearly five years ago, the ballot measure (Proposition 1A) that legalized California’s Indian casinos sailed to victory with almost 65 percent of the vote.
“On Tuesday, the state’s gambling tribes experienced a 180-degree turn in their political fortunes. Proposition 70, a tribal backed measure that would have given unlimited slot machines to Indian casinos, was being drubbed by an even larger margin that the tribes had enjoyed not so long ago in victory.”
But wait a minute, Mr.Sweeney. Not all California Indians look upon the defeat of both of those Props, 68 and 70, as a defeat. Melody (Little Wolf) Sheline e-mailed me on November 3rd. “Thank you to all who voted against these stupid props (68 and 70) of our so-called Governor’s plans.”
Prop 68 - If compacted tribes don’t unanimously accept required amendments within 90 days, or if determined, authorizes sixteen (16) specified non-tribal racetracks and gambling establishments to operate 30,000 slot machines/gaming devices, paying 33% of net revenues to fund government public safety, regulatory, social programs.
Prop 70 - “Bankrolled largely by the Agua Caliente band of Palm Springs, Proposition 70 would have given tribes unlimited gaming IF they agreed to pay the state’s corporate income tax, currently 8.84 percent.”
From what I can figure out: The Governor got his way; the people stopped the spread of unlimited casino gambling in the state but lost revenue; the Indians saved some money. If I’m wrong here, please, explain this whole thing to me.
Sweeney continues, “After the tribes weighed in against him in last fall’s recall campaign, Schwarzenegger portrayed them as an overreaching special interest and won. He made the defeat of the two gambling initiatives a top priority this year and has won, even more decisively.
“The voters spoke loud and clear and said the laws governing casino gaming in California should not be written by people who own casinos,” said Todd Harris, a spokesman for the governor.
“But Agua Caliente Chairman Richard Milanovich said the tribes had been cast as ‘scapegoats’ by the popular new governor. ’I think the public has latched onto this concept – it must be those nasty Indians who are making all this money and they’re not doing anything to help us out,’ Milanovich added.”
“Voters saw those two initiatives as expanding gaming beyond where most Californians are comfortable going,” said Dan Schnur, a strategist for a group of tribes that renegotiated their gambling agreements with Schwarzenegger.
After legalizing Nevada-style casinos on Indian reservations Schnur apparently reasoned “Californians no longer feel obligated to atone for past injustices against Native Americans”.
The bottom line for California tribes with casinos – Guard your collective assets!
NATIVE UNITY - A place for Native American Peoples to solidify their tribes to make a positive impact on the cultural, social, economic and political fabric of American society and a place for non-Natives to better understand the ways of the American Indian.