How native americans have conquered the gambling worldCum americanii nativi au cucerit lumea jocurilor de noroc

duminică, 6 martie 2011

Native American gaming enterprises are gaming businesses operated on Indian reservations or tribal land in the United States. Indian tribes have limited sovereignty over these businesses and therefore are granted the ability to establish gambling enterprises outside of direct state regulation.


Short history of native american Gaming

In the very early 1970s, Russell and Helen Bryan, a married Chippewa couple living in a mobile home on Indian lands in northern Minnesota, received a property tax bill from the local county, Itasca County. The Bryans had never received a property tax bill from the county before. Not certain what to do, but unwilling to pay it, they took the tax notice to local legal aid attorneys at Leech Lake Legal Services, who brought suit to challenge the tax in the state courts. The Bryans lost their case in the state district court, and they lost again on appeal in a unanimous decision by the Minnesota Supreme Court. Their last chance was to seek review in the United States Supreme Court. The Supreme Court granted review, and in a sweeping and unanimous decision authored by Justice Brennan, the Supreme Court held not only that states do not have authority to tax Indians on Indian reservations, but that they also lack the authority to regulate Indian activities by Indians on Indian reservations. Within a few short years, enterprising Indians and tribes began to operate Indian bingo operations in numerous different locations around the United States.

Under the leadership of Howard Tommie, the Seminole Tribe of Florida built a large high-stakes bingo building on their reservation near Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The tribe planned for the bingo hall to be open six days a week, contrary to Florida state law which only allows two days a week for bingo halls to be open, as well as going over the maximum limit of $100 jackpots..

Controversy arose when Indians began putting private casinos, bingo rooms, and lotteries on reservation lands and began setting gaming prizes which were above the maximum legal limit of the state. The Indians argued for sovereignty over their reservations to make them immune from state laws such as Public Law 280, which granted states to have criminal jurisdiction over Indian reservations. States were afraid that Indians would have a significant competitive edge over other gambling places in the state which were regulated, which would thus generate a vast amount of income for tribes.

In the early 1980s, the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, near Indio, California, were extremely poor and did not have much land because of neglected 1850s treaties by state senators. As Stuart Banner states, the Cabazon Band and the neighboring Morongo Reservation had „some HUD buildings and a few trailers, but that was about it. There was nothing really there. The people simply didn’t have a lot.” The Cabazon Band turned to casino operations, opening bingo and poker halls in 1980. Shortly thereafter, the Indio police and the Riverside County Sheriff shut down the gambling halls and arrested numerous Indians while seizing any cash and merchandise held in the tribe’s possession. The Cabazon Band sued in federal court (California v. Cabazon Band) and won, as did the Seminole Tribe in Florida. Although the tribe won in the lower courts, the Supreme Court reviewed the case in 1986 to reach a decision over whether Indian reservations are above state law. The Court again ruled that Indian gaming was to be regulated exclusively by Congress and the federal government, not state government; with tribal sovereignty upheld, the benefits of gaming became available to many tribes.

The native american Gaming Regulatory Act

In 1988 Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) (signed by President Ronald Reagan) which kept tribal sovereignty to create casino like halls, but the states and Indians must be in Tribal-State compacts and the federal government has the power to regulate the gaming. These compacts have been used by state officials to confiscate Indian casino revenue which serves as a „special” tax on Indian reservations. Essentially, the tribes still have „exclusive right” to all class of gaming except when states do not accept that class or it clashes with federal law. When President Reagan signed the IGRA, Indian gaming revenue skyrocketed from $100 million in 1988 to $16.7 billion in 2006. Following the IGRA, the National Indian Gaming Commission was created as a federal agency in 1988 to regulate high-stakes Indian gaming.

2006 Legislation

In 2006, the Congress introduced legislation to protect their own casino interests from those tribes that are outside reservations. Further, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) has faced increasing pressure to tighten up regulatory policy and oversight of casino approvals. In particular, the BIA has been instructed by Congress to implement new procedures after two decades of IGRA’s existence. These procedures would allow local communities to have more say in the siting of casinos in their community and would make the process of casino approval more transparent than it is today. To many tribes, however, the proposed regulations will further encroach on tribal sovereignty.

The Indian Gaming Industry

Indian gaming statistics provided by the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC), indicate that there are approximately 400 Indian gaming establishments in the United States.

Gaming in general is divided into 3 classes. Class I and Class II gambling are traditional Indian gaming such as bingo halls, poker halls, and lotteries; this does not require a license to open these up. Class III gambling are with high jackpots and high-stake games such as casinos, jai alai, and racetracks, and states feared that organized crime would manifest from the Indian Class III gaming on their reservations. The revenues generated in these establishments is close to $18.5 billion.

Tribal casinos located in the eastern United States generated roughly $3.8 billion in FY02. Those located in the Central United States recorded gross revenues of approximately $5.9 billion, while those located in the Western United States generated close to $4.8 billion. Most of the revenues generated in the Indian gaming industry are from Indian casinos located in, or near, large metropolitan areas. Currently, 12% of Indian gaming establishments generate 65% of Indian gaming revenues. Indian gaming operations located in the populous areas of the West Coast (primarily California) represent the fastest growing sector of the Indian gaming industry. As suggested by the above figures, the vast majority of tribal casinos are much less financially successful, particularly those in the midwest and great plains. Many tribes see this limited financial success as being tempered by decreases in reservation unemployment and poverty rates, although socioeconomic deficits remain.

California Gaming

The largest casino in the state of California is the Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, with 3,400 slot machines and approximately 188,000 sq ft (17,500 m2) of gaming space. Other notable gaming operations in California include the Morongo Casino, Resort & Spa, and the Chumash Casino. The Chumash tribe in Santa Barbara County is interesting in that it demonstrates interaction and collaboration between the tribe and the surrounding non-Indian population of the Santa Ynez Valley. The first structure, built in 1994, was modest and resembled a tent but has grown to 3 large albeit temporary rooms. The casino serves 3,500 people, mostly local Hispanics, per day and employs 750, mostly non-Indian, employees. Many do not welcome the 72,000-square-foot (6,700 m2) hotel and 155,000-square-foot (14,400 m2) casino, and many predict a strain on themselves when their community must expand emergency services. Many are aware of other problems that will arise such as increased pollution, traffic, and criminal activity.

Connecticut Gaming

The Foxwoods Resort Casino opened in 1992 in Ledyard, Connecticut. Operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe and earning $1.5 billion. It is more profitable than any one casino in Las Vegas or Atlantic City. With 7,200 slot machines and 380 table games, making the 314,000-square-foot (29,200 m2) Foxwoods Casino the second largest casino in the world(after Venetian, Macau with 550,000 square feet (51,000 m2) of casino space). The agreement between the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the State of Connecticut promises the state $80 million or 25% of their annual slot revenue. For the first 10 years of operation, the state has received more than $1.7 billion from Foxwoods alone. The Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino is also located in Connecticut. It has been in operation since 1996 and is a operated by the Mohegan tribe and the South African casino conglomerate. This enterprise is 150,000 square feet (14,000 m2) and consists of 3,000 slot machines and 180 table games. It is the second largest casino in the United States, located a few miles away from Foxwoods in Uncasville, Connecticut.The success of both casinos is due in no small part to their location roughly halfway between New York City and Boston.

Impact on Native American Economics

Native American gaming has, in some instances, changed the face of tribal economies, but it has also proven to be very ineffective in other situations. Although tribal victories over the governmental and cultural oppression in the 1950s yielded a dynamic transformation, economic success fell short in comparison. Unemployment was down and personal income had increased, but only a handful of tribes had made economic changes. Their strides were spotty and fluctuated greatly from each Indian reservation. This was happening because, for most tribes, their lands were not economically productive, infrastructure was poor, and they were far away from prospering markets of large populations. In order to address the issue of poverty, Indian tribes were required to fuel some type of economic development. Indians sold some of their tribal land to prospecting non-Indians in order to stimulate economic growth, but tribal gaming has proved to be the single largest amount of income in the Indian community. However the United States government intervened in tribal affairs throughout the rise of Indian gaming.

Many tribal governments have seen substantial improvements in their ability to provide public services to their members, such as building schools, improving infrastructure, and shoring up the loss of native traditions. Tribal gaming operations have not been without controversy, however. Additionally, the national expansion of Indian Gaming has led to a practice critics call reservation shopping. This term describes tribes that, with the backing of casino investors, attempt to locate a casino out of their indigenous homeland, usually near a large urban center. However, although authorized by the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, only three such „off-reservation” casinos have been built to date.Intreprinderile jocurilor de noroc ale Nativilor Americani sunt afaceri cu jocuri de noroc ce au loc in teritoriile rezervatiilor sau triburilor Indienilor din SUA. Triburile Indiene au suveranitate limitata asupra acestor afaceri si de aceea le este permisa abilitatea de a initia intreprinderi de jocuri de noroc in afara regulilor directe ale statului.


Scurta istorie a jocurilor Amer-Indienilor

Chiar la inceputul anilor 1970, Russell si Helen Bryan, un cuplu de soti Chippewa ce traiau intr-o rulota pe teritoriile Indiene din nordul Minnesotei, a primit o factura de taxare a proprietatii de la autoritatile locale, Itasca County. Cuplul Bryan n-a mai primit niciodata o asemenea factura de taxare de la autoritati inainte. Nefiind siguri ce sa faca, dar nedorind sa plateasca taxa, au dus factura la avocatii locali de consiliere legala de la Leech Lake Legal Services, care au dat statul in judecata pentru aceasta taxa. Sotii Bryan au pierdut cazul la curtea de stat a districtului si au facut apel, pierzand din nou printr-o decizie unanima a Curtii Sepreme Minnesota. Ultima lor sansa era sa incerce la Curtea Suprema a SUA. Aceasta a analizat cazul si printr-o decizie neasteptata si unanima sub tutela lui Justice Brennan, Curtea Suprema a decretat nu numai ca statul nu are autoritatea de a taxa Indienii in rezervatiile acestora, dar si ca statul nu are autoritatea de a reglementa activitatile Indiene facute de Indieni in rezervatiile Indiene. In doar cativa ani, antreprenori Indieni si triburile acestora au inceput sa deschida activitati de bingo Indian in multe si variate locatii pe teritoriul Statelor Unite.

Sub conducerea lui Howard Tommie, Tribul Seminole din Florida a construit o vasta cladire de bingo pe miza mari in rezervatia lor de langa Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Tribul planuia ca sala de bingo sa fie deschisa sase zile pe saptamana, contrar legilor statului Florida care pemiteau doar doua zile pe saptamana si care interziceau totodata depasirea jackpotului maxim de 100$.

Controversele au inceput cand Indienii au inceput sa inalte cazinouri private, sali de bingo si loterie pe teritoriile rezervatiilor si au inceput sa dea premii ce depaseau limita legala impusa de stat. Indienii sustineau suveranitatea asupra rezervatiilor lor pentru a le conferi imunitatea fata de legile statale cum ar fi Legea Publica 280, ce permitea statului sa aiba competenta judiciara pe teritoriile Indienilor. Statele americane se temeau ca Indienii ar avea un avantaj competitiv semnificativ fata de alte locuri de joc din stat care erau reglementate, ceea ce va genera un castig substantial pentru triburi.

La inceputurile anilor 1980, Misiunea Indiana Cabazon, de langa Indio, California, era o comunitate extrem de saraca si nu aveau mult teritoriu datorita indiferentei senatorilor de stat fata de tratatele anilor 1850. Dupa cum Stuart Banner spunea, Cabazonienii si vecinii lor Rezervatia Morongo aveau „cateva case de ajutor social si putine rulote si cam atat. Nu prea era nimic acolo. Oamenii pur si simplu nu aveau mai nimic.” Indienii Cabazon s-a orientat spre operarea de cazinouri, deschizand sali de bingo si poker in 1980. La scurt timp dupa aceea, politia Indio si Sherifful Districtului Riverside au inchis salile de joc si au arestat numerosi Indieni confiscandu-le toate posesiile in bani si marfa pe care le avea tribul. Tribul Cabazon a dat in judecata la Curtea Federala (California v. Cabazon Band) si a castigat, la fel ca Tribul Seminola in Florida. Cu toate ca tribul a castigat la curtile de judecata mai mici, Curtea Suprema a revizuit cazul in 1986 spre a ajunge la o decizie daca rezervatiile Indiene sunt in afara legii statului. Curtea a hotarat din nou ca jocurile Indiene vor fi reglementate exclusiv de catre Congres si Guvernul Federal, nu cel de stat; avand sustinerea suveranitatii tribale, beneficiile jocurilor au devenit disponibile multor triburi.

Actul de Reglementare a Jocurilor Americanilor Nativi

In 1988 Congresul a inaintat Actul de Reglementare a Jocurilor Indienilor (IGRA) (semnat de catre Presedintele Ronald Reagan) care pastra suveranitatea tribala pentru crearea de sali tip cazino, dar statele si Indienii trebuia sa faca o conventie Tribalo-Statala iar guvernul federal avea puterea de a reglementa jocurile de noroc. Aceste conventii au fost folosite de catre oficialii statului pentru a confisca castigurile anuale ale casinourilor Indiene ce serveau ca o taxa „speciala” pentru Rezervatiile Indiene. In esenta, triburile inca au „drepturi exclusive” pentru toate clasele de jocuri de noroc cu exceptia situatiei cand statele nu acceptau conventia sau intrau in contradictie cu legea federala. Cand Presedintele Reagan a semnat Actul IGRA, castigurile anuale ale jocurilor de noroc Indiene explodasera de la $100 millioane in 1988 pana la $16.7 miliarde in 2006. Urmand Actul IGRA, Comisia Nationala Indiana de Jocuri de noroca fost creata ca o agentie federala  in 1988 pentru a reglementa jocurile Indiene cu miza mare.

Legislatia 2006

In 2006, Congresul a introdus o legislatie pentru a proteja interesele propriilor cazinouri fata de cele ale triburilor care se afla in afara rezervatiilor. Mai mult, Biroul Afacerilor Indiene (BIA) a intampinat o presiune crescanda pentru a intari politica de reglementare si a supraveghea aprobarile cazinourilor. In mod special, BIA a fost instruit de catre Congres sa implementeze noi proceduri dupa doua decenii de existenta IGRA. Aceste proceduri vor permite comunitatilor locale sa aiba un cuvant de spus in amplasarea de cazinouri in cadrul comunitatii si va face procesul de aprobare a cazinourilor mult mai transparent. Totusi, pentru multe triburi, reglementarile propuse vor incalca si mai mult suveranitatea tribala. 

Industria de Jocuri de Noroc Indiana

Statistice jocurilo de noroc Indiene provenite de la Comisia Nationala Indiana a Jocurilor de Noroc (NIGC), indica faptul ca sunt aproximativ 400 de stabilimente indiene de jocuri in SUA.

Jocurile in general sunt impartite in 3 clase. Clasele I si II sunt reprezentate de jocurile traditionale Indiene cum ar fi salile de bingo, poker si loterii; acestea n-au nevoie de licenta pentru a fi deschise. Clasa a III-a de jocuri de noroc sunt jocurile cu mize si jackpot-uri mari cum ar fi cazinourile, jai alai, hipodromuri si curse, iar statele se tem ca crima organizata s-ar manifesta de la jocurile Indiene de clasa III pe rezervatiile lor. Veniturile anuale in aceste stabilimente sunt de aproximativ $18.5 miliarde.

Cazinourile tribale situate in estul Statelor Unite au generat estimativ $3.8 miliarde in anul fiscal 2002. Cele localizate in centrul Statelor Unite au inregistrat un venit brut anual de aproximativ $5.9 miliarde, in timp ce locatiile din vestul Statelor Unite genereaza aporape $4.8 miliarde. Cele mai multe dintre veniturile generate in industria de jocuri Indiana provin din cazinourile Indiene localizate in, sau in apropierea, zonelor marilor metropole. Momentan, 12% din stabilimentele de jocuri Indiene genereaza 65% din veniturile de jocuri. Operatiunile de jocuri Indiene localizate in zonele populate ale Coastei de Vest (in principal California) reprezinta cel mai rapid sector al industriei de jocuri Indiene. Dupa cum sugereaza cifrele de mai sus, marea majoritate a cazinourilor tribale sunt mai mult sau mai putin finantate cu succes, in special acele din zona central – vestica si a marilor campii. Multe triburi vad succesul financiar limitat ca fiind temperat de somajul in scadere din rezervatii si statisticile de saracie, cu toate ca deficitele socio-economice raman.

Jocurile din California

Cel mai mare cazino din statul California este The Pechanga Resort and Casino din Temecula, cu 3,400 de slot machines si aproximativ 188,000 sq ft (17,500 m2) de spatiu de joc. Alte operatiuni de joc notabile din California includ Morongo Casino, Resort & Spa, si The Chumash Casino. Tribul Chumash din Districtul Santa Barbara este interesant prin faptul ca demonstreaza interactiunea si colaborarea dintre trib si populatia non-Indiana inconjuratoare din Santa Ynez Valley. Prima structura, construita in 1994, a fost modesta si semana cu un cort dar a crescut cu 3 camere vaste. Cazinoul deserveste 3,500 oameni, in mare parte localnici de origine spaniola, pe zi, si are 750 de angajati, majoritatea non-Indieni. Multi nu simpatizeaza hotelul de 6,700 m2si cazinoul de 14,400 m2si multi prezic tensiuni atunci cand comunitatea va trebui sa-si mareasca serviciile de urgenta. Multi sunt constienti de alte probleme ce vor aparea cum ar fi poluarea in crestere, traficul si activitatile criminle.

Jocurile din Connecticut

Cazinoul Foxwoods Resort deschis in 1992 in Ledyard, Connecticut, condus de Tribul Mashantucket Pequot castiga $1.5 miliarde.Este mult mai profitabil decat orice alt cazino din Las Vegas sau Atlantic City. Cu 7,200 de slot machines si 380 mese de joc, cu o suprafata de 314,000 sq ft (29,200 m2), Foxwoods Casino este al doilea cazino ca marime din lume (dupa Venetian, Macau cu 550,000 sq ft – 51,000 m2 de spatiu de joc). Acordul dintre Natiunea Tribala Mashantucket Pequot si Statul din Connecticut promite acestuia $80 millioane sau 25% din venitul lor anual din slot machine. In primii 10 ani de existenta, statul a incasat mai mult de $1.7 miliarde numai de la Foxwoods. The Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino este si el localizat in Connecticut. Are activitate din 1996 si este condus de Tribul Mohegan si conglomeratul Sud African al cazinoului. Acest stabiliment are 150,000 sq ft (14,000 m2) si detine 3,000 de slot machines si 180 de mese de joc. Este al doilea ca marime din Statele Unite, localizat la cateva mile distanta de Foxwoods din Uncasville, Connecticut. Succesul ambelor cazinouri se datoreaza in cea mai mare parte pozitionarii la jumatatea distantei dintre New York City si Boston.

Impactul asupra economiei Nativ-Americane

Jocurile Nativ – Americane au schimbat, in unele situatii, fata economiei tribale, dar a si dovedit totodata ca poate fi foarte ineficienta in alte situatii. In ciuda victoriilor tribale asupra opresiunilor guvernamentale si culturale din anii ’50 ce au produs o transformare dinamica, succesul economic pare mic prin comparatie. Somajul a scazut si castigul personal a crescut, dar doar cateva triburi au facut schimbari economice. Pasii lor au fost notabili si au fluctuat amplu de la o rezervatie indiana la alta. Acest lucru se datoreaza faptului ca, majoritatea triburilor nu aveau pamanturi productive economic, infrastructura era saraca si erau departe de a fi piete prospere de mari populatii. Ca sa abordeze problemele saraciei, triburile Indiene au fost nevoite sa produca un anumit fel de dezvoltare economica. Indienii au vandut o parte din pamanturile lor tribale unor dezvoltatori non-Indieni pentru a stimula cresterea economica, dar jocurile tribale s-au dovedit a produce singura mare sursa de venit in comunitatea Indiana. Insa, guvernul Statelor Unite a intervenit in afacerile tribale pe tot parcursul dezvoltarii industriei Indiana de jocuri.

Multe guverne tribale au vazut imbunatatiri substantiale in abilitatea lor de a furniza servicii publice membrilor sai, cum ar fi cladiri de scoli, infrastuctura imbunatatita si renasterea traditiilor native muribunde. Derularea jocurilor de noroc nu au fost totusi fara controverse. In plus, expansiunea nationala a jocurilor Indiene a condus la o criza practica denumita shopping de rezervatie. Acest termen descrie triburile care, cu sprijinul investitorilor de cazinouri, incearca sa localizeze un cazino in afara propriului tertoriu, de obicei in apropierea unei mari asezari urbane. Insa, desi aprobat de catre Actul de Reglementare a Jocurilor de Noroc Indiene, numai trei astfel de cazinouri „in afara rezervatiilor” s-au construit pana astazi.


Author: Editor

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