Over the past year, the American Gaming Association (AGA) has worked to improve its relationship with the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) and Native American gaming in general by boosting tribal membership within the organization and devoting more time and resources to issues that impact this growing segment of the U.S. casino industry, said AGA President and CEO Geoff Freeman during a day one session at Global Gaming Expo (G2E), which is currently taking at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas.
“As an organization, the AGA is looking for new ways to represent the totality of the gaming industry,” Freeman said during a session entitled Tribal Overview: The State of Indian Gaming. “In 2015, we have added multiple tribal members to the AGA, and focused on issues such as anti-money laundering and Internal Revenue Service concerns that cross over both commercial and tribal gaming industries.”
The AGA has also expanded the tribal gaming conference track offered at G2E, a fact not lost on NIGA Chairman Ernie Stevens Jr. “We have an excellent opportunity here to move Indian gaming forward and Jeff and his team have helped to make this happen,” Stevens said at the session.
Later in the session, Alan Meister PhD, a principal accountant for Nathan Associates, provided some up-to-date statistical information on the size and scope of the tribal gaming industry. According to Meister’s research, there are currently 244 gaming tribes operation 479 gaming facilities in 28 states. These operations comprise of 353,000 slot machines and 7,700 tables games, and generated a combined $28.5 billion in revenue in 2014, a 1.5 percent growth rate over 2013 revenue figures.