Everyone knows that you play against the house in blackjack. You also play against other players. The winner gets to take home the bet. However, did you know the house has to play against someone to earn the right to play blackjack? It’s true! A casino needs to hold a gambling license in order to begin dealing cards lawfully. Right now, there is a showdown in Florida about the right to gamble, and it involves the game of blackjack.
The Seminole Tribe owns numerous casinos in Florida. The casinos were trying to get a deal for five years to be able to continue slinging the cards for blackjack and other card games across Florida. However, discussions stalled this past spring. With over $1 billion in revenue on the line, the Seminole Tribe requested to go to mediation with the state to resolve the issue. Florida officials and the Seminole Tribe agreed to have the New York lawyer Loretta Gastwirth mediate the process. Gastwirth has a history in arbitration, and she has previously worked with the celebrity Mick Jagger.
The Semoinole Tribe has enjoyed exclusive rights to banked card games in Florida since 2010. This applied to five of the Seminole’s seven casinos. In exchange, the Seminole Tribe agreed to pay the state $1 billion over a period of five years. The Seminole Tribe exceeded that amount. This is all part of a deal that is supposed to last twenty years. However, the card portion of the deal expired on July 31st of this year. This means the Seminole Tribe has 90 days to get the card portion of the deal settled again. The Seminole Tribe wants to get this taken care of as quickly as possible so they can continue dealing. Who knew so much work went on behind the scenes of blackjack?