Florida Senate Approves Gaming Expansion for Seminoles and Florida Pari-mutuels
On April 17th, 2009, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood could be changed into a full-blown casino facility with the addition of the game from craps and roulette aside from card games like baccarat and blackjack under a gaming proposal approved by the Senate of Florida.
On a twenty-seven-eleven vote, the Senate decided to improve the 2007 gaming agreement between Governor Charlie Crist and the Seminole tribe in legislation that gaming supporters say would transform Florida into a top tourist destination for VIP's.
The original gaming agreement only allows slot machines and card games. In exchange, the Senate gaming plan requires the Seminole tribe to pay Florida at least $400 million annually-money that would be allotted to education and is enough to support 27,000 teachers, according to Senator Dennis Jones, a Republican from Seminole.
The Seminoles have 7 casino facilities in Florida, including their flagship gaming facility Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood and a gaming facility in Coconut Creek. Now, the gaming action moves to the Florida House, a conservative chamber that is reluctant to allow gaming expansion. That chamber's gaming compact limits tribal casino facilities to Class III slot machines and blocks baccarat and blackjack gaming.