Last Call for 4.25.18 — A prime-time read of what's going down in Florida politics – Florida Politics (blog)
Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.
There was no joy in the halls of the Capitol — or on Adams Street — as efforts to call a Special Session on gaming died Wednesday.
Sources told Florida Politics, later confirmed by Senate President-designate Bill Galvano, that negotiations between the chambers fell apart, in part because of a disagreement over allowing slot machines in counties that passed a local referendum allowing them.
Specifically, it was over St. Lucie County, which has a jai alai fronton and card room now known as Casino Fort Pierce and is in Senate President Joe Negron’s district.
Only the Seminole Tribe can offer slots outside of South Florida, where slots are currently offered at pari-mutuels.
Also foiling talks was a lack of a solution to making up revenue that could have been lost from added gambling that infringed on the Seminoles’ exclusive rights to slots outside of Miami-Dade and Broward counties.
If the Tribe considers its exclusivity broken under a 2010 agreement between it and the state, it’s entitled to reduce payments or stop them altogether. The Tribe paid the state paid a little more than $290 million last fiscal year.
The latest news comes a week after an agreement was signed between the state and the Seminoles guaranteeing that the Tribe will keep sharing gaming revenue from its casinos at least till May 2019.
Now the Legislature faces having its hands indefinitely tied by a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot. That measure, which current polls show will likely pass, would require a statewide vote to approve any future expansions of gambling.
In a statement, Senate President Joe Negron said “significant progress was made on