- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 5, 2014

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - A legislative panel is recommending the New Mexico Legislature approve a proposed gambling compact with the Navajo Nation that would allow the state’s largest tribe to open more casinos.

The Committee on Compacts voted 12-4 on Wednesday to forward the gambling agreement to the House and Senate for a vote this session.

Navajo leaders said after the meeting that they are confident of winning legislative approval for the gambling agreement.

The Navajos operate two Las Vegas-style casinos in New Mexico under a compact expiring next year and a third casino offers low-stakes gambling not subject to state regulation.

Other tribes and pueblos have objected that the new compact would allow three additional high-stakes Navajo casinos.

The proposed agreement needs approval of the Legislature and the federal government to take effect.

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