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By EMERY P. DALESIO
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina officials are taking steps that could allow the Cherokee Indian casino in the mountains to expand gambling to live dealers.

Gov. Bev Perdue’s office says Cherokee officials want a change to the state agreement that allows the federally recognized tribe to run the state’s only legal casino. Perdue’s attorneys and Cherokee Attorney General Annette Tarnawsky said the General Assembly needs to act to make clear the governor’s negotiating authority.

The tribe has worked for more than five years to expand casino revenues by offering live-dealer card games. The Cherokee argued in 2006 that live games of poker, craps and blackjack could add 430 jobs and a payroll of more than $15 million.

A Perdue spokeswoman says the governor is always looking for ways to boost employment.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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