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New Mexico Bingo

New Mexico has a stormy gambling background. When the IGRA was passed by the House in 1989, it looked like New Mexico would be one of the states to cash in on the Native casino craze. Politics assured that wouldn’t be the case.

The New Mexico governor Bruce King announced a working group in Nineteen Ninety to create an accord with New Mexico Indian bands. When the working group came to an agreement with two important local bands a year later, Governor King refused to sign the bargain. He would hold up a deal until Nineteen Ninety Four.

When a new governor took office in 1995, it appeared that Native gaming in New Mexico was now a certainty. But when Governor Gary Johnson passed the compact with the Native tribes, anti-gambling groups were able to hold the contract up in courts. A New Mexico court found that Governor Johnson had overstepped his bounds in signing a deal, thus costing the state of New Mexico hundreds of thousands of dollars in licensing revenues over the next several years.

It took the CNA, passed by the New Mexico legislature, to get the process moving on a full accord amongst the Government of New Mexico and its Amerindian bands. Ten years had been lost for gambling in New Mexico, including Amerindian casino Bingo.

The nonprofit Bingo business has increased since 1999. That year, New Mexico not for profit game providers acquired just $3,048 in revenues. That climbed to $725,150 in 2000, and surpassed a million dollars in revenues in 2001. Nonprofit Bingo revenues have grown steadily since then. 2005 witnessed the biggest year, with $1,233,289 grossed by the owners.

Bingo is clearly favored in New Mexico. All types of owners look for a bit of the action. Hopefully, the politicos are through batting around gaming as a hot button factor like they did back in the 1990’s. That is without doubt wishful thinking.

Posted in Bingo.


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