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IRS claims casinos, hotels not governmental projects

The IRS is investigating at least two tribes who issued tax-exempt bonds to finance casino and hotel projects.

The IRS issued a preliminary adverse determination last month against the Seminole Tribe of Florida. The agency says the tribe and its backers will have to pay taxes on a $410 bond deal used to finance two casinos.

The IRS is also investigating the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians. The tribe issued $145 million in bonds for a hotel, convention center and parking garage.

Charlie Anderson of the IRS, the auditor involved, told The Riverside Press-Enteprise that such arrangements raised red flags. The agency doesn't consider casinos and hotels to be "essential" governmental functions that would otherwise be eligible for tax-free bonds.

Get the Story:
Tribe's finance plan in doubt (The Riverside Press-Enterprise 1/20)
Tribes warned to avoid Cordish-style borrowing (The Baltimore Sun 1/20)

Relevant Links:
Seminole Tribe of Florida -

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