|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.|
We are Native Americans representing a coalition of over 80 California Indian Tribes--the vast majority of Tribes in California.
California's Native Americans are asking you to vote YES on Proposition 5 so we can keep the types of gaming we now have on our reservations.
We are not asking for hand-outs. We are asking to take care of ourselves and get off welfare. And we are asking voters to support economic activity which benefits all Californians.
Today California Indian casinos:
- provide nearly 50,000 jobs for Indians and non-Indians;
- reduce California taxpayers' welfare payments by $50 million per year;
- generate $120 million annually in state and local taxes.
Historically, California Tribes have lived in poverty and welfare dependency because our small reservations have almost no natural resources and are too remote to support conventional economic development.
But when federal law recognized our right to conduct limited gaming on Tribal lands, it gave us our first real opportunity to become economically self-reliant and begin to realize the American dream.
Since then, Indian gaming has greatly improved conditions on many reservations. Tribal governments use casino revenues to provide health care, housing, better educations for Indian children, cultural preservation, environmental protection and care for our elders.
After generations of proverty, despair and dependency, our lives are better. We're pulling our own weight and paying our own way. On reservations with casinos, unemployment has dropped nearly 50%; welfare has been cut by 68%, and in some cases eliminated entirely.
Now, big Nevada casinos are trying to shut down Indian gaming in California, because they want to kill competition from California's Indians. Their weapon is a backroom deal--cut in Sacramento--that would force the shutdown of our gaming. Unless Proposition 5 passes, this deal would result in the shutdown of video machines which provide 75% of our revenues.
If that were to happen, it would be devastating for California Indian Tribes--and bad for California's taxpayers.
Proposition 5 creates a responsible and reasonable plan for Indian gaming now and for the future.
Proposition 5 will:
- strictly limit Indian casinos to Tribal lands;
- allow Tribes to keep the limited types of gaming we now have and allow other tribes to set up similar limited gaming;
- share Indian gaming revenues with non-gaming Tribes for use in education, housing, health care and other vitally needed services;
- dedicate revenues to support emergency medical services for all Californians, and to local communities near Indian casinos.
Nevada interests are spending millions on a misleading anti-Indian campaign against Proposition 5. We urge California voters to reject Nevada's scare tactics, and stand with us against the big Nevada casinos.
We urge you to vote YES on Proposition 5 to preserve the American dream for Native Americans.
Chairman, Californians for Indian Self-Reliance
MARY ANN ANDREAS
Tribal Chairperson, Morongo Band of Mission Indians
DAVID R. EDWARDS
Tribal Chairman, Tyme-Maidu Tribe