Local Governments Closer to Receiving An Additional $20 Million From the Indian Gaming Special Distribution Fund

Press Release
For Immediate Release

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Local Governments Closer to Receiving An Additional $20 Million From the Indian Gaming Special Distribution Fund

March 16, 2006

The California State Senate yesterday approved Senate Bill 288, authored by Senators Jim Battin (R-La Quinta) and Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego), which would re-allocate $20 million from the Indian Gaming Special Distribution Fund (SDF) to be used for grants to local government agencies.

Since the inception of the SDF local governments have used revenues received from the fund to purchase additional police and fire vehicles, improve roads, implement traffic safety programs, and fund other critical programs.

Last year, due to incorrect information received, Governor Schwarzenegger objected to budget line item 0855-101-0367 which would have allocated an additional $20 million of mitigation funds to local governments from the Special Distribution Fund. SB 288 would re-instate this budget allocation.

“The 64 federally recognized member tribes of the California Nations Indian Gaming Association applaud the California State Legislature for approving this allocation which will provide local governments with the funds they were promised by both the State of California and the tribal governments when they entered into the 1999 compacts,” said CNIGA Chairman Anthony Miranda.

“CNIGA respectfully asks the Governor to sign SB 288 and provide local governments with these much needed revenues,” said Miranda.

BACKGROUND

On September 10, 1999, sixty-one tribal governments entered into gaming compacts with the State of California. These compacts were ratified by the California State Legislature and ultimately approved by the Department of the Interior on May 16, 2000. The compacts expire in May of 2020.

Contained in these compacts is a provision for tribes to pay into a fund titled the Indian Gaming Special Distribution Fund (SDF). These funds are to be used to reimburse local governments impacted by off-reservation effects of tribal gaming, problem gambling treatment and prevention programs, and to pay the state for regulatory costs. Money from the fund may also be used to make up for shortfalls in a second Revenue Sharing Trust Fund through which gaming tribes share revenues with non-gaming tribal governments and those with limited gaming.

ABOUT CNIGA

Representing 64 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.

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