The Miami Herald is reporting that Gov. Charlie Crist and the Seminole Tribe have reached an agreement on a new compact, which will be presented to the Seminole’s governing body today for approval by Monday’s deadline.
Legislative leaders joined the final negotiations this week, and what is unclear in the <a href="http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2009/08/with-deal-imminent-here-are-the-gambling-compact-details.html">details</a> that the Herald are reporting is what exactly will be in the version that the Seminole Tribe approves. Legislators are hoping for some last-minute additions, and it’s unclear whether they will be added and whether the compact will pass the Legislature if they are not included.
Assuming the Seminoles ratify the deal by Monday, the next step would be for the Legislature to consider it in a special session. It seems likely that a special session will be called for the first week of October, when legislators are in Tallahassee for committee meetings. If the compact passes the Legislature, it will then go to the federal government for final approval and then publication in the Federal Register. After the first compact was passed, the federal step took roughly six weeks, so it’s possible that we’ll have new poker limits in Florida before Thanksgiving. However, there remain concerns in the compact, and especially whether there’s sufficient "exclusivity" for the Tribe to pass federal requirements.