Cuomo: First $11 million payment made in Oneida Nation deal

By The Associated Press

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - The Oneida Indians have made their first payment of $11 million under a deal with the state that guarantees the tribe exclusive territory for their central New York casino.

A federal judge last week approved the deal reached with the Cuomo administration last May. Gov. Andrew Cuomo says Tuesday the payment was made to Madison County and more money is forthcoming.

Oneida County will begin receiving payments April 1 of about $10-$12 million from the state's share of revenue from the Oneida Nation net win from slot machines. Additionally, the state will provide Oneida County with an additional $2.5 million for the next 19 years to cover tax claims.

The deal assures the Oneidas that no competing casino will be located near their Turning Stone casino in Verona in neighboring Oneida County. In return, the tribe will give to the government 25 percent of the casino's net revenue from slot machines, expected to be around $50 million annually.

The deal helped pave the way for Cuomo to shepherd expanded casino gambling in New York and settled longstanding tribal tax and land claim issues.

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