Sports betting debate presents tribes with difficult decisions
Compacts orClout States seeking legalized sports wagering are largely ceding to tribal demands, particularly exclusivity provisions in many tribal-state compacts. State officials are cognizant that to do otherwise could jeopardize jobs and revenue generated by Indian gambling.
“States have found great value in the revenue these compacts generate through tribal gaming,” says Navajo Hilary Tompkins, an attorney with the Washington, D.C. firm Hogan Lovells LLP.
“The states have been facing a lot of budget constraints and are very dependent on tribal revenue sharing,” says Tompkins, former solicitor for the U.S.
Department of the Interior under President Barack Obama.
Murphy. States also benefit from taxes, jobs and the economic impact of Indian casinos on surrounding communities.
“My general sense is that the states are in a position where they really are dependent on the tribes and have an interest in continuing that relationship,” Tompkins says.
particularly exclusivity provisions in many tribal-state compacts. State officials are cognizant that to do otherwise could jeopardize jobs and revenue generated by Indian gambling.
Compacts orClout The economic impact of gambling has provided tribes with political clout.
Tom Washington, head of communications for London-based Genius Sports and BetGenius, acknowledges the competitiveness, “a sense that people are coming in and telling U.S. operators how to do things they’ve been doing for decades.
“I remember going to conferences five, six years ago and hearing stories of European companies going in and selling to U.S. casinos in the wrong way—it was probably overconfidence, a bit of arrogance, like, ‘Here’s how we do it over in the U.K. and Europe;
What’s a no-brainer for companies like ours is to hire local expertise on the ground, which is what we’ve done.”
The group now has more than 100 U.S.-based staffers
“Political power follows economic power, and Indians are a dominant player in the U.S. gambling industry,” says attorney Stephen Hart of Lewis, Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP, whose clients include several Indian tribes.
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