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Seneca Nation: Helping New York Prosper for Generations


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The people of the Seneca Nation of Indians have lived and worked in Western New York for the last 1,000 years. Over the past two decades, the Seneca Nation has invested hundreds of millions of dollars across Western New York to build schools, community centers, hotels, gaming facilities, and small businesses. The Seneca Nation is a powerful economic engine in Western New York, creating more than 6,000 jobs and generating more than $125 million annually in payroll – with the vast majority of those jobs being held by non-Indians.

The 2002 compact between the Seneca Nation and the State of New York enabled the Senecas to build three gaming facilities, bringing $900 million in investment by the Nation that was spent directly in the local economy. Under the compact, the Senecas agreed to give New York State a percentage of their income – which has resulted in $476 million in direct payments since 2002. In return, the Governor and the New York State Legislature promised to create and protect an “exclusivity zone” West of State Route 14 within which no entity other than the Nation would be permitted to operate electronic gaming machines (e.g., slot machines and video lottery gaming machines).

New York State has already broken this promise by permitting “racinos” and others to offer such games within the Nation’s exclusivity zone.

Now, New York State is threatening to further renege on its promise to the Seneca people by allowing out of state interests to compete with Seneca’s gaming enterprises in this promised exclusivity zone. Doing so would not just further violate the State’s legal and moral commitment to the Senecas. It would also seriously imperil the economy of Western New York by threatening thousands of local jobs. By opening the door for foreign and Las Vegas-style gaming operators to build casinos within the Seneca exclusivity zone, the State will be inviting these operators to take their revenues out of New York State to shareholders in Asia, Las Vegas and elsewhere.

The Senecas Mean Business for Western New York. Honoring the 2002 compact will allow the Seneca Nation to continue its investment and the expansion of both its gaming and non-gaming enterprises that create jobs and generate revenue for Western New York communities.

Help us protect the sixth largest employer in the Buffalo/Niagara Frontier, and the thousands of jobs tied to Seneca businesses. Raise your voice with Governor Cuomo and your elected officials to keep the Seneca economic engine growing.

Contact your state assembly member and state senator and tell them to honor the existing exclusivity zone that generates thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars for Western New York.

Contact New York Legislators

Latest News

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Lawmakers seek support for Senecas' exclusivity zone
By Rick Miller, Olean Times Herald | March 13, 2012

New hotel tower at Seneca Allegany Casino under budget and ahead of schedule
By Christopher Michel, Olean Times Herald | February 22, 2012