Manitoba recently ran into some problems after the Government of Manitoba approved an opening for the Shark Club Gaming Centre. The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, also known as AMC, have filed a lawsuit asking for $870 million to make up for the First Nations’ lost revenue.
The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ Secretariat Inc. as well as the Sand Hills Casino Resort’s Limited Partnership agrees that the government breached a contract between themselves along with the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries board.
The contract held an agreement that both entities would commit to supporting the growth and health of the First Nations’ gaming market; this included denying support of an opening of a First Nations casino within Winnipeg.
Inside the Court of Queen’s Bench, AMC filed a statement saying that the government’s decision blocked their access to one of the only markets within Manitoba where these casinos can grow and generate significant profits.
They are asking for $870 million to make up for their lost revenue and damages. They are also asking for court orders in hopes to increase First Nations’ casino market opportunities.
The AMC made claims that the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries board, who currently own two casinos in the Winnipeg area, are merely trying to keep their portion of the market share in the province.
They also stated that the government has increased equipment prices in addition to denying loans guarantees extensions. They are even refusing to connect with the AMC or any of the casino owners to go over financial issues. The government also continues to deny them access to the Winnipeg market.
The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ Grand Chief, Mr. Arlen Dumas, asked the Government of Manitoba to meet their obligations since gaming is such a huge part of their culture and should contribute to their economic development in a public statement issued by CBC News of Manitoba.
Dumas continued to say that the AMC will keep asking the government to take action to fix this problem. If the government continues to refuse, Mr. Arlen Dumas threatens to continue taking the government to court to get the issues solved.
It will be interesting to see if Manitoba’s government will comment on their lawsuit soon. The AMC is pushing hard for the government to take action, so the Government of Manitoba will most likely respond very shortly.