Seneca Nation President Barry E. Snyder, Sr. Response To New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo

May 17, 2013, 14:43 ET from Seneca Nation of Indians

CATTARAUGUS TERRITORY, Seneca Nation of Indians, May 17, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Yesterday, we all witnessed another symptom of the unfortunately strained relationship the Seneca Nation of Indians has with Governor Andrew Cuomo.  Yet again he has chosen a path of playground bully tactics rather than one of maturity, dignity and mutual respect. 

Apparently, he fails to see the error of his ways lauding job creation and stability throughout the State while at the same time threatening the economic security of thousands of hard working families in Western New York employed by the Nation or its vendors.

With respect to the dire financial straits in which the Cities of Niagara Falls and Salamanca find themselves, here's the undeniable truth. In Sections 11, 12 and 17 of the Compact, the State and the Nation agreed that the State, and the State alone, would be responsible for entering into separate agreements with these communities for directly and independently compensating the host communities.

The Compact says that if the State breaches exclusivity, the Nation's obligation to make the exclusivity payments as well as the State's right to receive them shall cease immediately.  And it goes on to say that the State's loss of its right to receive exclusivity payments because of its breach of the Nation's exclusivity rights shall not affect the validity of any other provision of this Compact.

Simply put, it's the State's obligation to pay the local communities.  Rather than showing leadership on this issue and paying the local governments, the Governor has brought the Cities of Niagara Falls and Salamanca to the brink of a financial ruin. 

The Seneca Nation has acted in good faith and negotiated diplomatically but we continue to experience over and over the childish antics of the state's top leader and his advisors. 

We hope the Oneida's have better success than we have had working with the state.  But then again, maybe it won't be long before the Oneidas also find that the State is not in 'good standing' under their agreements.

Since opening our flagship casino in Niagara Falls, the Seneca Nation has generated more than $1 billion dollars (both paid and escrowed) in slot revenue for the state. The state has acknowledged that gaming is a critical driver for tourism growth and economic development.  We all agree on these points. It's unfortunate that so much time has been wasted.

Contact: Susan Asquith
Travers Collins- (716) 842-2222


SOURCE Seneca Nation of Indians