Tribes vs. Vegas in Bangor
By earl
The Bangor Daily News has reported that despite a “rebuff” from a legislative committee for bidding to reopen the process for awarding state gaming licenses to them, representatives from two of Maine’s Indian tribes have “adopted a new approach to grabbing the slot machine rights at Bangor Raceway.”

Richard Spencer, a Portland lawyer representing the Penobscot Nation and the Passamaquoddy Tribe's, said his clients mailed an application to get “intervenor status” to the Maine Harness Racing Commission on Thursday. Intervenor status would grant the tribes the legal status they would need to apply for a license for harness racing at Bangor Raceway.

Bangor Historic Track, Inc., a private non-tribal company, currently operates the racetrack, which is owned by the city of Bangor.

The tribes are also interested in obtaining a licensee to operate slot machines at the track, gambling which was initiated by private citizens and approved by Maine voters in a referendum last November 4. The introduction of interactive gaming devices like FOBT’s is not being considered.

The Bangor Daily News added that “Tens of millions of dollars in revenue are at stake. As things stand, Bangor Raceway is the only racetrack in Maine with the state and local authority to operate slot machines.”

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