California’s Gaming Tribes Share More Than $200 Million With Other Tribes

Press Release
For Immediate Release


California’s Gaming Tribes Share More Than $200 Million With Other Tribes

November 17, 2005

Checks, drawn from more than $200 million deposited by gaming tribes, were sent yesterday to eligible tribes throughout the state. The revenue-sharing program, the first of its kind in the nation, was launched by California gaming tribes to help non-gaming tribes and those with very limited gaming.

As provided in the tribal-state compacts signed by 61 tribes in 1999, 70 of California’s 107 federally recognized tribes qualify for assistance from the fund. Each eligible tribe will receive a quarterly payment of $275,000 bringing the total distribution to $19,250,000.

“Many of California’s Indian tribes lack sufficient funds to fully satisfy the need for basic governmental services to their members,” said Anthony Miranda, chairman of the California Nations Indian Gaming Association (CNIGA), which represents 66 federally recognized tribes. “It is important that all eligible tribes continue to receive this much needed revenue. Revenues from this fund are allowing tribes to improve roads, healthcare, education, housing, and to build strong tribal governments through economic diversification.”

Monies to the 70 tribes are drawn from the Indian Gaming Revenue Sharing Trust Fund (“RSTF”) and the Special Distribution Fund (“SDF”) created as part of the historic tribal-state compacts signed in 1999 with the State. Under the compacts, eligible tribes may receive up to $1.1 million annually from the RSTF. If funds are not sufficient to pay the total $1.1 million each, the compacts provide for the SDF to backfill the shortfall.

“California’s gaming tribes are proud the 1999 tribal-state compacts created a tribal revenue sharing program from funds generated by California tribes solely to support other California tribes. To date, California’s gaming tribes have paid more than $146 million into the Revenue Sharing Trust Fund and nearly $319 million into the Special Distribution Fund,” said Miranda.

The checks issued yesterday are the first to be issued since the passage of AB 1750 which authorizes the backfill of the “RSTF” shortfall from the “SDF” each fiscal quarter rather than at the end of the fiscal year. AB1750 also requires payment to be issued within forty-five days of the end of each fiscal quarter, allowing eligible tribes to engage in viable, long term financial planning.


Representing 66 member tribes, CNIGA is the largest association of California federally recognized tribal governments. CNIGA is dedicated to protecting the sovereign right of Indian tribes to have gaming on their land. It acts as a planning and coordinating agency for legislative, policy, legal and communications efforts on behalf of its members and serves as an industry forum for information and resources.

#   #   #