Associated Press
The Seminole Tribe will have exclusive rights to operate blackjack.

Seminole 20-Year Compact Provides 'Stability and Certainty for the Long Term'

Rodney Harwood

The Seminole Tribe of Florida took a historic step forward, ensuring future rewards in its multi-billion dollar a year gaming operation when Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed off on a new compact allowing the tribe exclusive rights to operate blackjack and to add craps and roulette.

The 20-year compact includes a guarantee that the tribe will generate $3 billion in added revenue to the state over the course of the next seven years. The Florida House and Senate, as well as the U.S. Department of the Interior, still need to ratify the deal. But Seminole tribal spokesman Gary Bitner told ICTMN things are moving in the right direction.

“The agreement provided stability and certainty for the long term,” he said. “The tribe does earn over $2 billion dollars a year from gaming. So this has been a goal for the Seminole Tribe throughout it’s gaming history, ensuring that it has stability in its planning for the future.”

The compact represents an unprecedented level of cooperation between the State of Florida and the Seminole Tribe of Florida, including the largest revenue share guarantee in history at $3 billion, which is three times the prior compact, which expired in July, according to Scott.

In his letter to House Speaker Steve Crisafulli and Senate President Andy Gardiner, Scott wrote, “This compact will also result in an over $1.8 billion capital investment by the Seminole Tribe and over 4,800 new and indirect jobs with an additional 14,500 construction jobs.”

The Seminoles offer blackjack and other card games at locations, including the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa. The tribe will be able to offer banked card games at all seven of its reservations, adding Big Cypress and Brighton to the five casinos that are currently authorized in the five-year deal that expired in July.

RELATED: Seminole-Florida Compact May Allow Table Games at Tribal Casinos, Slots at Pari-Mutuels

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