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State To Tax Slot Machines

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California will begin taxing slot machines before operating expenses are deducted – a decision expected to cost Indian tribes tens of millions of dollars annually.

The money instead will go instead to local governments, state regulators and to aid gambling addicts.

But the California Gambling Control Commission is deciding the rule won´t be retroactive – saving the tribes as much as $35 million the state attorney general says they should have paid for April, May and June.

Tribes are objecting to the commission´s interpretation of the state´s gaming compact that define “net wins” at slot machines.

But the commission says it´s using the same definition used in Nevada and New Jersey.