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The tax revenue for 10 counties in the Oneida Indian Nation's exclusive gaming zone didn't take a major hit after the opening of del Lago Resort & Casino in Seneca County last year. 

Cayuga and other counties in the Oneidas' gaming territory received a combined $26,918,658.50 in 2017, according to records available on the state comptroller's Open Book New York database. The counties' share of the tribe's revenue decreased 2.7 percent from 2016, when the payments totaled $27,668,177.60. 

Cayuga County received $518,287.75 last year compared to $536,858.11 in 2016. While the payments dipped by more than $18,000, the total is higher than the county's share of the Oneidas' gaming revenue in 2014 and 2015. 

Oneida County, which is the host municipality for the Oneida Nation's Turning Stone Resort Casino, received $17,441,898.93 in payments last year. That's the most of any county in the exclusive zone. 

The Oneida Indian Nation, which also operates Point Place Casino and Yellow Brick Road Casino in Madison County, expressed concern before del Lago opened that the new Seneca County casino would cannibalize its revenues. 

Despite the Oneidas' efforts, the state Gaming Commission approved del Lago's license and the casino opened in February 2017. 

Del Lago has been under scrutiny because the casino fell short of its revenue projects. A few years ago, projections suggested that del Lago would earn $250 million in the first 12 months. The casino fell about $100 million short of that mark in its first year. 

But del Lago's debut, the opening of the expanded Tioga Downs Casino in the Southern Tier and the new Rivers Casino near Albany may have impacted the Oneidas' revenue in 2017. 

Every county in the Oneidas' exclusive zone received less in 2017. Onondaga County, the largest non-host county in the territory, saw its share of gaming revenue fall by 3.4 percent. The county received $3,133,065.41 in 2016. The total payments fell to $3,024,690.24 last year. 

ONEIDAS' GAMING COMMISSION PAYMENTS (2016-17)
County20172016Difference
Oneida$17,441,898.93$17,977,269.71-$535,370.78
Madison$3,500,000$3,500,0000*
Cayuga$518,287.75$536,858.11-$18,570.36
Chenango$326,913.90$338,627.27-$11,713.37
Cortland$319,524.22$330,972.82-$11,448.60
Herkimer$417,856.80$432,828.68-$14,971.88
Lewis$175,428.75$181,714.38-$6,285.63
Onondaga$3,024,690.24$3,133,065.41-$108,375.17
Oswego$790,837.98$819,173.85-$28,335.87
Otsego$403,219.93$417,667.37-$14,447.44
TOTAL$26,918,658.50$27,668,177.60 

Online producer Robert Harding can be reached at (315) 282-2220 or robert.harding@lee.net. Follow him on Twitter @robertharding.

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