On February 4th, a new legislative session begins. You will have 30 working days to develop solutions to the critically important issues facing our State. Gaming is one of those issues. Passing legislation that puts the power of gaming to work for our State can change it for the better – not just for a few years, but for generations.
We have a comprehensive plan that includes both a clean lottery and regulated casino gaming that will provide a reliable source of revenues that the State can count on. Our plan draws on the lessons we have learned by doing gaming right. We have built well-run, profitable gaming businesses that create jobs, support families and communities, and produce real economic development. We understand the economic power of gaming, so our plan calls for large licensing fees to be paid to the State in return for the privilege of running deluxe, resort casinos that are tourist destinations. Those fees will provide an immediate, much needed infusion of funds to Alabama’s budget.
Then, every year going forward, tax revenues from those regulated gaming businesses will fund the essential services Alabamians need such as education, healthcare, infrastructure, and public safety. An estimated 6,500 new jobs will be created and the ripple effect of economic development will change lives, improve communities, and put our State on solid economic footing. And all this can happen without an increase in taxes.
As part of that plan, our Tribe is offering to negotiate a Compact with the Governor that will ultimately be a fair and productive partnership for both our Tribal government and the State. Under a Compact, the State would share significant profits from our gaming businesses. In turn, we would be granted exclusive rights to offer table games. We would also build two new destination resort casinos that will produce a steady source of employment, tourist dollars, and revenue that benefits all Alabamians.
The people of Alabama are like no other. Our State’s citizens are hard-working and tenacious. They value giving to others and are guided by a deep faith and abiding optimism that tomorrow can be better. That faith is well-founded.
This legislative session, you have the opportunity to put the power of gaming to work for our State at a critically important time. Like you, we are focused on finding solutions and on winning for Alabama. We have a comprehensive plan based on years of experience doing gaming right. If given the opportunity, we will not hesitate to do our part and be Alabama’s partner in progress.
The Poarch Band of Creek Indians
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