TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida House lawmakers passed a gambling compact Wednesday that would give the Seminole Tribe new casinos and new games, sending the bill to Gov. Ron DeSantis.
What You Need To Know
- Florida House lawmakers have passed a gaming compact 97-17
- The compact would expand gambling and games on Seminole tribal land
Wednesday marks the third day of the Florida Legislature’s special session.
The Florida House passed the bill 97-17. The Senate signed off on the compact the day before, after top Republicans deleted a provision that involved online gambling. The House is expected to follow suit, but there could be a number of no votes.
Many Democrats are concerned about the possible impact of new games at the tribal casinos — including craps, roulette and legalized sports betting — on Florida’s tourism economy. Some socially conservative Republicans are warning of a rise in gambling addiction.
Critics argue the tribe’s agreement with DeSantis violates a 2018 constitutional amendment that requires voter referendums on new gaming.
Supporters point to the $2.5 billion in royalties the Seminole Tribe would pay the state in the first five years alone. It's money they say could be spent on anything from education to health care to the environment.
The Florida Legislature is not done with the special session. Fourteen other bills are being considered.