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7Nov/170

New Mexico Bingo

New Mexico has a rocky gambling history. When the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was signed by the House in Nineteen Eighty Nine, it seemed like New Mexico would be one of the states to cash in on the Amerindian casino bandwagon. Politics assured that would not be the case.

The New Mexico governor Bruce King announced a panel in 1990 to discuss an accord with New Mexico American Indian bands. When the working group came to an accord with two important local bands a year later, Governor King refused to sign the agreement. He would hold up a deal until Nineteen Ninety Four.

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

It took the CNA, signed by the New Mexico house, to get the process moving on a full accord amongst the State of New Mexico and its Indian bands. A decade had been squandered for gambling in New Mexico, which includes Amerindian casino Bingo.

The nonprofit Bingo business has increased since Nineteen Ninety-Nine. In that year, New Mexico not for profit game operators acquired just $3,048 in revenues. This number grew to $725,150 in 2000, and surpassed one million dollars in 2001. Not for profit Bingo earnings have grown constantly since that time. Two Thousand and Five witnessed the largest year, with $1,233,289 grossed by the providers.

Bingo is clearly popular in New Mexico. All types of owners look for a slice of the action. With hope, the politicos are done batting over gambling as an important factor like they did back in the 1990's. That is without doubt wishful thinking.

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