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Kenaitze Indian Tribe, Alaska

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The state Division of Taxation is barring six nonprofit groups from raising money through pulltabs after their pulltab cooperative was found to have violated state gaming laws. The Last Chance pulltab cooperative, operated by Juneau resident George Wright, managed gaming operations on behalf of the Anchorage Symphony, Alaska Village Initiatives, Tlingit and Haida, the Juneau Boxing Club, the Kenaitze Indian Tribe and Charitable Gaming Association of Alaska. Last Chance provided member nonprofits with $70,000 each in 1999. They will have to find other sources of funds in 2001 if an Aug. 31 decision stands. Last Chance may finish the 2000 calendar year, but will be closed down for 2001. The year-long ban on gambling extends to the six nonprofit members. Last Chance plans to appeal the decision, said spokesman Dave Massey. A 10-page decision noted that since 1995 the cooperative repeatedly failed to pay the 30 percent minimum required to its member nonprofits and had more expenses than allowed, including a misuse of the gambling cooperatives' funds and unusual transfers of money between the Last Chance Co-op and other organizations Wright helped run. Last Chance Co-op also spent $156,220 it was supposed to have set aside in a reserve account pending resolution of its dispute with the city over whether pull-tab shops must pay sales tax.