Some of the largest tribe’s in Oklahoma have reportedly voiced concerns over a recent declaration by Governor, Kevin Stitt (pictured), that the western state should be getting a bigger piece of the estimated $2.3 billion its aboriginal casinos earn every year.
According to a Wednesday report from the Associated Press news service published by The Dallas Morning News newspaper, Oklahoma is home to approximately 120 gambling establishments operated by some 35 tribes under 15-year gaming compacts that are due to expire in January.
These enterprises purportedly range in size from a few machines placed inside small gas station annexes to large resort-style casino hotels such as the Downstream Casino Resort located near the state’s borders with neighboring Missouri and Kansas.
Despite this over-abundance, the news service reported that Oklahoma only collected around $139 million in exclusivity taxes last year, which are a feature of the compacts while being calculated at between 4% and 10% of a venue’s gambling revenues.
This discrepancy led the Republican Governor, who is also a citizen of the federally-recognized Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, to pen a Monday opinion piece in which he called for these rates to be raised as part of the state’s renegotiation of the deals later in the year.
“In this case, that means sitting down with our tribal partners to discuss how to bring these 15-year-old compacts to an agreement that reflects market conditions for the gaming industry seen around the nation today.”