For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Christinia Thomas
NIGC Announces Tribal Consultation Dates
Subjects Include the Application of NEPA to Management Contracts and Technological Changes in the Gaming Industry
Washington, DC February 11, 2014 — As part of President Obama’s commitment to strengthening government-to-government relationships with Native Americans, the National Indian Gaming Commission announced consultation dates for March, April and May.
“As we continually examine how we can improve our role in supporting tribal economic development through sound regulation, we are excited to continue meaningful engagement and collaboration with Tribes and tribal regulators,” commented Acting Chair Jonodev Chaudhuri. “Of the two topics of the upcoming consultations, one involves a narrow regulatory question and the other involves the broad issue of what we can to do as an agency to stay ahead of the technology curve”, Chaudhuri added. “We always welcome tribal input on industry matters, regardless of the scope of a given issue.”
Consistent with Presidential Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, relationship building and meaningful consultation remain central priorities of the Commission.. The Commission once again seeks input from Tribal governments, this time pertaining to the following topics:
The National Environmental Policy Act
In December of 2009, the NIGC published a draft NEPA manual in the Federal Register and requested comments. Some of the comments received questioned whether the approval of a management contract actually triggered a NEPA review. Further, the comments suggested that the NIGC should either conclude that NEPA does not apply or it should adopt a categorical exclusion for the approval of management contracts. Therefore the Commission is seeking comments on what level of environmental review, if any, is required before the Chairman can or should approve a management contract.
The Commission realizes that constant technologic advances are not only changing the face of Indian gaming, but also necessitate that the NIGC continue to adapt to meet the regulatory needs of the industry. As tribal gaming evolves, the NIGC wants to continue to play a relevant role in tribal gaming and ensure that it can meet the demands of new regulatory issues in a timely manner.
The Commission invites all tribal leaders and their designees to share their views during the following scheduled consultations:
March 20, 2014
Mandalay Bay Casino Hotel
3950 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89119
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
*Held during the RES Conference
April 2, 2014
Mystic Lake Casino
2400 Mystic Lake Blvd
Prior Lake, MN 55372
3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
*Held immediately following the Great Plains Indian Gaming Association Conference
May 8, 2014
Mississippi Coast Coliseum & Convention Center
2350 Beach Blvd
Biloxi, MS 39531
4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
* Held immediately following the Southern Gaming Summit
May 14, 2014
San Diego Convention Center
111 W. Harbor Drive
San Diego, CA 92101
3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
*Held following the NIGA Trade Show & Convention – Please refer to www.NIGC.gov for call-in information as the date draws near
All NIGC consultations utilize a group discussion format. To obtain as many comments as possible, the May 14, 2014 consultation will include teleconference capabilities for all of those that wish to participate but cannot attend in person. Call-in details for the teleconference will be provided on www.NIGC.gov as the May 14 date draws near. If you have questions, need additional information, or require special accommodations, please contact Rita Homa at (202) 632-7003.
The National Indian Gaming Commission is committed to the prompt and efficient regulation of the Indian gaming industry, which spans more than 420 gaming establishments, associated with nearly 240 tribes across 28 states. The Commission’s dedication to compliance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act ensures the integrity of the $27.9 billion Indian gaming industry. For more information, visit www.nigc.gov.
The NIGC is an independent regulatory agency established within the Department of the Interior pursuant to the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988.