Thursday June 6,2013 : CALIFORNIAN TRIBAL CHIEF SPEAKS AGAINST CURRENT ONLINE POKER LEGALISATION BILL
Chief William Bills of the Winnemucca Indian Colony of Nevada wants more consultation
Sen. Rod Wright's latest attempt to drive an online poker legalization bill through the California Legislature has been criticised by Chief William Bills of the Winnemucca Indian Colony of Nevada, who has urged fellow tribal leaders to strengthen their Sovereignty and stand against Wright's proposal.
Nevertheless, Chief Bills said that he would be happy to discuss the issue with the California Senator to explore how it could benefit the tribes.
The Winnemucca recently launched the ShonEcasino.com online gaming brand on the GEObet Network.
"I believe Senator Wright is doing his best to bring forth the legalization of online gaming to the State of California, however his approach is off the mark from where the vast majority of Tribes stand on this issue," Chief Bills said Wednesday.
"I have been traveling across the nation meeting with Tribal leaders who are moving towards e-Commerce tied to their economic development strategy and online gambling plays significantly in those plans as a starting point to Cyberspace.
"We have inherent rights that Senator Wright should consider and not ignore in his poker bill in California that will certainly diminish if not destroy our Sovereign rights. The Tribes really should not have to be required by the State of California to have a gaming license because they have the right to self-government and self-determination and can essentially license themselves if they choose to do so." the chief pointed out.
"However we want to work with the States to create a framework of cooperation that is needed to use this industry to bring economic benefits to the Tribes.
"By supporting the Rod Wright bill in California as written, they will be surrendering their Tribal rights to self-government. This will be a very slippery slope and one that will have the Tribes losing in online gambling while the major casino consortiums will control the majority of this business in America."
Chief Bills commented that if the Wright bill passes, only the wealthiest of land based casinos will be able to afford to have poker licenses in California, noting that the $35 million dollars upfront is a barrier that is impossible to breach when entrepreneurs all over the world can launch online gaming sites and do business under international licenses for approximately 35,000 – 50,000 annual license fees.
In addition European licensing bodies and governments are taking 0% up to 2% of Net gaming revenues for licensing and giving online gaming companies the opportunity for zero corporate tax in order to stimulate business development, he added.
Addressing himself directly to Sen. Wright, Chief Bills said:
"Senator I am not from your State however the Tribes span many States in America and our concerns are tied to blood lines that cross all borders not only State lines they include the border north to Canada and south to Mexico. I would welcome an opportunity to have an open discussion with you about your intent with this bill and understand how it will benefit the Tribes."