What must a tribe do before opening a gaming facility?

  1. The tribe must determine whether the state in which the gaming facility is to be located permits such gaming.  If the state permits gaming by any person, organization or entity, then tribes are allowed to conduct Class II gaming activities without state approval.  If the tribe wishes to conduct Class III gaming, a Tribal-State compact must be negotiated.

  2. Indian gaming must be conducted on Indian lands within a tribes’ jurisdiction.  Indian lands are defined as all lands within the limits of any Indian reservation and any lands title to which is either held in trust by the United States for the benefit of any Indian tribe or individual or held by any Indian tribe or individual subject to restriction by the United States against alienation and over which an Indian tribe exercises government power.

  3. The tribe must submit a tribal gaming ordinance to the Commission.  The ordinance must provide, among other things, that:  (1) the tribe will have the sole proprietary interest and responsibility for conducting gaming, (2) net revenues will be used for specific purposes, (3) annual outside audits will be conducted, and (4) a process for licensing and conducting background checks is in place.  The Chair of the NIGC must approve an ordinance before gaming can occur.

  4. If a tribe wishes to have the gaming facility managed by a third party, the Chair must have reviewed and approved a management contract.

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