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Florida to allow sports gambling under new agreement with Seminole Tribe

On Friday Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis reached a historic agreement with the state’s Seminole Tribe that would expand gambling in the state, including the introduction of legalized sports wagering.

In the agreement, the tribe would be allowed to offer sports gambling at its casinos in South Florida and near Tampa and will be allowed to license horse tracks, jai-alai frontons and former dog tracks to accept such wagers on its behalf for a share of the income.

The tribe will also be allowed to introduce craps and roulette at its seven casinos, including the popular Hard Rock near Fort Lauderdale. The state would get at least $2.5 billion from the tribe over the first five years and at least $6 billion over by 2030. DeSantis, in a statement, said he expects the pact to create 2,200 new jobs.

“This historic compact expands economic opportunity, tourism, and recreation, and bolsters the fiscal success of our state in one fell swoop for the benefit of all Floridians and Seminoles alike,” DeSantis said. “Our agreement establishes the framework to generate billions in new revenue and untold waves of positive economic impact.”

The 30-year compact between the state and tribe must still be considered by the Legislature at a special session that will begin May 17. It also must be approved by the Seminole tribal council and the U.S. Department of the Interior, which oversees tribal gambling operations.