New York won a major ruling on Friday, with the Seneca Nation ordered to pay $255 million to the state in slot machines and video lottery revenue.
The Seneca Nation and New York inked a revenue sharing compact in 2002, granting the tribe exclusive rights to operate gambling venues in the region while paying the state around $100 million per year. However, the Senecas have been withholding payments ever since 2017, claiming that the deal stopped being effective in 2016. In April, an arbitration panel ruled that the tribe should adhere to the revenue sharing compact until 2023, with the Seneca Nation challenging the decision.
Federal Judge William M. Skretny sided on Friday with the panel, saying that the Senecas and New York reached an agreement to resolve any disputes through binding arbitration. The Judge stated that the law explicitly noted that federal courts had to uphold any decisions made by arbitration panels.
The repayment of $255 million is unpaid revenue the tribe accrued from spring 2017 to December 2018. However, New York might receive an additional $100 million accumulated in the past year.
Under the terms of the agreement, the state receives 25% of slots and video lottery revenue.