New Mexico Bingo

by Brennen on March 22nd, 2017

New Mexico has a stormy gambling history. When the IGRA was passed by the House in Nineteen Eighty Nine, it looked like New Mexico might be one of the states to get on the Native casino craze. Politics assured that would not be the case.

The New Mexico governor Bruce King appointed a working group in 1990 to create an accord with New Mexico American Indian tribes. When the task force arrived at an accord with two big local tribes a year later, the Governor refused to sign the agreement. He held up a deal until Nineteen Ninety Four.

When a new governor took office in Nineteen Ninety Five, it appeared that American Indian betting in New Mexico was a certainty. But when the new Governor passed the compact with the Amerindian tribes, anti-gaming groups were able to hold the deal up in the courts. A New Mexico court ruled that Governor Johnson had out stepped his bounds in signing the accord, thereby denying 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 government, to get the process moving on a full accord amongst the State of New Mexico and its Amerindian bands. A decade had been lost for gaming in New Mexico, including American Indian casino Bingo.

The non-profit Bingo industry has increased since 1999. In that year, New Mexico not for profit game owners acquired just $3,048. This number grew to $725,150 in 2000, and surpassed a million dollars in 2001. Not for profit Bingo earnings have grown constantly since then. 2005 witnessed the biggest year, with $1,233,289 earned by the providers.

Bingo is certainly favored in New Mexico. All types of operators look for a bit of the pie. Hopefully, the politicos are through batting over gaming as an important factor like they did in the 1990’s. That is probably wishful thinking.

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