Senecas Ordered to Pay State $255 Million in Casino Revenues

Senecas Ordered to Pay State $255 Million in Casino Revenues


By Spectrum News Staff

The Seneca Nation of Indians must pay $255 million to New York State, according to an arbitration panel.

Back in January, the panel decided against the Senecas in their fight with the state over casino revenues.

The Seneca Nation stopped its annual payments to the state two years ago, claiming a compact signed by the state only required payments until 2017. The panel disagreed, ruling the Senecas must continue to pay New York through 2023.

Those payments are disbursed by the state to cities hosting Seneca casinos, including Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Salamanca.

Seneca Nation President Rickey Armstrong said the decision to require the Senecas to continue paying was made “despite the fact that no language exists in the compact to make such a determination.” 

In a statement released Friday, Armstrong said the panel “has effectively and materially amended the agreed upon terms of the compact. It has done so in complete disregard of federal law that governs the compact and without following the necessary federal procedures for making compact amendments.”

The Seneca Nation will continue to review the order and will “determine a path forward” after exploring their legal rights, he said.