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Citing Lottery report, Pawlenty calls for new tribal gaming deal
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- On his weekly radio program this morning, Governor Tim Pawlenty announced the release of a report that details the current state of gambling and discusses the future potential of additional gambling proposals.
Governor Pawlenty provided the report to legislative leaders and encouraged them to support his efforts to get a better deal for Minnesota from tribal gaming interests.
In a letter to legislative leaders, Pawlenty stated, "This report makes clear that Minnesota has one of the nation's largest tribal casino industries, yet the state receives essentially no direct revenues from tribal gaming interests. This is inconsistent with the arrangements in other states that also have large tribal casinos. That needs to change"
The report details current forms of gambling in Minnesota, including the state lottery, charitable pull-tabs, raffles, paddlewheels, tipboards, bingo, Internet wagers and Canterbury Park racetrack It also recounts the history of Indian gaming in Minnesota and takes a look at Indian gaming nationwide.
Among the details in the report:
*The State of Minnesota receives essentially no direct payments from tribal casinos.
*In 2002, the largest tribal casino payments to a state government were made in Connecticut -- a total of $379 million. This was followed by $70 million in California, $31 million in New Mexico, $29 million in Michigan and $24 million in Wisconsin. Since 2002, several states have negotiated new agreements with tribal gaming interests and payments from the tribes to those states will increase dramatically.
*The State of Minnesota received $157 million from gambling taxes and proceeds from the lottery, charitable gambling and horse racing in FY04.
*The Minnesota State Lottery makes the largest direct contribution to the state - $100 million in FY04.
"I asked the Minnesota Lottery staff to prepare this report so that we could have a thoughtful and well-informed discussion regarding the future of gambling," said Governor Pawlenty. "Numerous proposals have been made for additional forms of gambling -- from cooperative ventures with Indian tribes to new state-operated forms of gambling."
Pawlenty has stated a preference to not expand gambling in Minnesota. However, in exchange for keeping it in its current form he believes financial contributions from the tribes are now needed. He has also indicated that if the tribes are unwilling to make contributions to the state, he will explore other options.
Alternative forms of gambling referenced in the report include additional gambling opportunities at existing casinos, state-tribal cooperative casino, Canterbury Park racino, state owned and operated casino, an airport casino, additional pari-mutuel facilities, Keno, video lottery terminals or commercial casinos.
Commercial casinos exist in 11 states, six of which are in the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri and South Dakota). Taxes on these enterprises can be a significant source of revenue for governments -- Illinois, for example, collected over $700 million in state and local gambling taxes in 2002.
The report was prepared by the staff of the Minnesota Lottery.Previous Press Releases:
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