With a month left before the deadline for Gov. Charlie Crist and the Seminole Tribe to agree to a new compact, a flurry of recent news reports indicate an agreement is still a long way off.
The most complete, as usual, comes from Josh Hafenbrack of the <a href="http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/florida/sfl-seminoles-gambling-072409,0,798163.story">Sun-Sentinel</a>. While the Seminole Tribe isn’t quoted, a negotiator for the governor’s office says the tribe is seeking a reduction in annual payments to the state from $150 million to $125 million, stronger "exclusivity" language that would prevent future expansion of table games outside of South Florida and the right to keep their table games at Seminole Casino Immokalee.
House Rep. Bill Galvano, the top gaming negotiator in the House, has repeated his earlier comments that major shifts in the legislation won’t pass muster in the House. If the Tribe and governor can’t reach a deal by Aug. 31, or the Legislature rejects the deal that’s reached, then all of the legislation – including higher limits and longer hours for poker – will die.