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New Mexico Bingo

March 20th, 2018 Leave a comment Go to comments

New Mexico has a complex gambling past. When the IGRA was signed by Congress in Nineteen Eighty Nine, it seemed like New Mexico might be one of the states to get on the Native casino craze. Politics guaranteed that wouldn’t be the situation.

The New Mexico governor Bruce King appointed a working group in 1990 to draft an accord with New Mexico Amerindian bands. When the working group arrived at an accord with two important local bands a year later, the Governor declined to sign the bargain. He held up a deal until 1994.

When a new governor took office in 1995, it appeared that American Indian gambling in New Mexico was a certainty. But when Governor Gary Johnson signed the accord with the Amerindian bands, anti-gaming forces were able to tie the deal up in the courts. A New Mexico court found that Governor Johnson had out stepped his bounds in signing the deal, thereby costing the state of New Mexico hundreds of thousands of dollars in licensing revenues over the next several years.

It required the CNA, passed by the New Mexico house, to get the process moving on a full accord amongst the State of New Mexico and its Native tribes. A decade had been lost for gambling in New Mexico, which includes Amerindian casino Bingo.

The not for profit Bingo business has grown from Nineteen Ninety-Nine. In that year, New Mexico charity game owners brought in just $3,048 in revenues. This number grew to $725,150 in 2000, and exceeded a million dollars in revenues in 2001. Not for profit Bingo revenues have increased constantly since that time. Two Thousand and Five witnessed the biggest year, with $1,233,289 grossed by the operators.

Bingo is clearly favored in New Mexico. All types of operators look for a piece of the pie. Hopefully, the politicians are through batting over gambling as an important issue like they did back in the 90’s. That’s probably hopeful thinking.

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