California signs gaming compacts with Middletown Rancheria of Pomo Indians, Redding Rancheria tribes

The State of California has entered into two separate gaming compacts with the Middletown Rancheria of Pomo Indians of California and the Redding Rancheria.

These agreements enable both groups to establish and operate up to two gaming facilities each on eligible Indian lands, where they will be able to offer Nevada-style games such as slot machines, electronic games of chance, and various banked card games like blackjack. The tribes will also retain the right to acquire additional lands for future expansion and negotiate for amendments to authorize gaming on those lands.

The tribes would be entitled to operate up to a total of 1,200 gaming devices and offer off-track wagering on horse races at a satellite wagering facility, as reported by The Center Square.

Tribal casinos do not pay taxes like commercial casinos. In California, tribal members who live on the reservation are not subject to state income tax, and tribal casinos do not have to pay corporate income tax,” notes PlayCA.

Instead of paying taxes, the casinos pay fees into various funds and, in some cases, help support state and/or local agencies and programs. The amount they pay depends on how much revenue the casinos generate, as well as the number of slot machines they operate. Each tribal-state compact determines the precise terms of the tribes’ payments and where those payments go.

The two newest compacts signed provide for contributions to The Revenue Sharing Trust Fund, the Special Distribution Trust Fund, and “The Tribal Nation Grant Fund” created by the Legislature to make discretionary distribution of funds to Non-Gaming Tribes and Limited-Gaming Tribes upon application of such tribes for purposes related to effective self-governance, self-determined community, and economic development. 

Still, California’s 85 Tribal casinos generate almost $20 billion for state and local economies, $1.3 billion in revenue-sharing to the state and local governments, and 125,000 jobs for Californians.

Prop 27, which would have allowed licensed tribes or gambling companies to offer online sports betting on mobile devices to people 21 years of age and older, was voted down by California residents on November 8, 2022.