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Indian gaming

Under the Federal 1988 Indian Gaming Regulation Act Native American tribes are permitted to operate casinos and bingo parlours. Tribes such as the Mashantucket Pequots in Connecticut near large cities have been particularly successful. Generally a tribe is permitted to operate gaming facilities if anyone in the state is permited to.

When the law came into effect the was hope that it would provide a source of much needed income to Native American communities; in a few cases this has also come true. Unfortunately however it has mostly been the smallest tribes that have been able to quickly organize a casino and establish market dominance. Larger tribes have thus been left in the cold. In addition clever businessmen have frequently established joint ventures with tribes on terms that have left meager funding for Native Americans. There are also examples of small groups of people with dubious Native American heritage who have been able to register a tribe solely for the purpose of establishing a tax exempt casino.

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