Arizona Indian gaming revenue up

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PHOENIX -- Despite the national economy struggling to recover, more people in Arizona are trying their luck at Indian casinos.

The Arizona Department  of Gaming announced Monday contributions to the state from tribal gaming revenue is nearly $23.9 million for the third quarter. It is a 3.2 percent increase from the same quarter last year. It is also the ninth consecutive quarter increase.

"The latest figures are encouraging," said Mark Brnovich, Arizona Department of Gaming director. "This trend is a positive economic sign for our state and critical programs will continue to receive funding."

Under state law, tribes with casinos contribute 1 to 8 percent of their gaming revenue to the state, cities, towns and counties.

The third quarter numbers for the quarter that ended in September are below pre-recession numbers. In the second quarter of 2007, the state received more than $28 million from tribal gaming revenue.

Currently, 15 tribes operate 22 Class III casinos. Another six tribes do not have casinos but have slot machine rights they lease to other tribes with casinos.