|Tribal-State Gaming Compacts.|
Tribal Casinos. Initiative Statute.
|Arguments on this page are the opinions of the authors and have not been checked for accuracy by any official agency.|
Most people want to help native Americans, but enacting a flawed ballot initiative is the WRONG approach. The groups behind Proposition 5 want you to think it is about helping American Indians keep limited gambling on their reservations, but they don't need a ballot initiative for that! Prop. 5 would result in a dramatic expansion of UNREGULATED and UNTAXED casino gambling throughout California. Here's what this initiative is REALLY about:
- California has over 150 recognized or pending tribes that could operate multiple casinos in communities throughout the state. Incredibly, the Governor is MANDATED to sign the agreement contained in this initiative allowing casinos with NO NEGOTIATION, discussion or changes! If the Governor refuses to sign the deal, then it takes effect anyway!
- Moreover, Indian tribes could purchase land OFF their reservations and open huge casinos wherever they want in California. All they need is the approval of two politicians--the Governor and Secretary of Interior. There is NO LOCAL VOTE of citizens to authorize or reject these casinos!
- These casinos would operate outside our state's tough environmental laws that protect us against air and water pollution, toxic waste dumping and damage to our fragile coast.
Here's what the PLANNING AND CONSERVATION LEAGUE says in opposing this initiative:
"Indian casinos are exempt from ALL state environmental quality laws, including Coastal Commission regulations, air and water pollution laws, and toxic waste provisions. This initiative could result in great environmental damage to California."
- California is prohibited from taxing the $1.5 BILLION these casinos take in each year. What other business in the state is allowed to operate free of state and local taxes? California taxpayers would pay for all the transportation and law enforcement problems caused by Indian casinos, but not a penny in tax revenue is dedicated to solving those problems.
- The casinos are also exempt from California WORKER PROTECTION laws. They don't even have to pay the state minimum wage or provide workers' compensation insurance to their employees.
- Local law enforcement officials are prohibited from enforcing state laws against gambling crimes in these Indian casinos. It would be almost impossible for California to stop organized crime, prevent money laundering and make sure that the gambling is conducted fairly.
- Because these casinos pay no income taxes and are EXEMPT from virtually all state health and safety and business regulations, they have an UNFAIR advantage over businesses that do follow the rules and pay their fair share in taxes.
This ballot initiative simply goes too far. That's why a broad coalition of groups OPPOSE Proposition 5, including ENVIRONMENTAL organizations, LABOR groups, BUSINESS leaders, LAW ENFORCEMENT organizations, SENIORS, LOCAL GOVERNMENT, and SMALL BUSINESS owners. This diverse coalition probably couldn't agree on the time of day, but we all agree that Proposition 5 is a FLAWED ballot initiative.
Proposition 5 is ALL PAIN and NO GAIN for California. UNREGULATED, UNTAXED, UNLIMITED casino gambling with NO LOCAL CONTROL is UNFAIR for California.
Please, check it out for yourself and then join us in voting "No."
Small Business Owner
California Political Director, Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union, AFL-CIO
SHERIFF GLEN CRAIG
Former President, California Police Officers' Association