Wisconsin governor signs ‘historic’ compact amendment

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Casinos and affiliate locations within the state of Wisconsin operated by the Forest County Potawatomi are set to offer event wagering on sports and non-sports events. 

This comes after state Governor Tony Evers and Chair Ned Daniels Jr of the Forest County Potawatomi signed a “historic” compact amendment that has been sent to the US Department of Interior, where it will undergo a 45-day review. 

“I am glad for the good work of Chairman Daniels, the Forest County Potawatomi, and the folks at the Department of Administration to get this done so folks can enjoy sports and other event wagering in our state while benefiting the tribe’s economic growth,” Evers stated.

“I look forward to continuing our partnership together to find new opportunities that support and bolster the tribe’s success and our state’s success for years to come.”

The Wisconsin compact amendment follows on from Evers signing a similar alliance with the Oneida Nation and the St Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin, and will provide the opportunity for the Forest County Potawatomi to begin offering sports and event wagering at its two casinos and adjacent lands in the Menomonee Valley and Forest County. 

Daniels Jr added: “We appreciate Governor Evers and his administration working with us in a government-to-government manner to provide our tribe the tools needed to compete in the marketplace and giving us the business certainty to continue our investments in Milwaukee and throughout the state.”

The Forest County Potawatomi plans to open a sportsbook venue at the Potawatomi Hotel and Casino in Milwaukee by the end of 2022. In addition, the amendment extends the term of the current compact to 2061.

“The compact amendment is the result of extensive and productive negotiations with the Forest County Potawatomi Community,” noted Department of Administration Secretary-designee Kathy Blumenfeld. “We are grateful for our continued partnership, and this successful negotiation will be a win-win for the state and the tribe.”

The DOA’s Office of Indian Gaming and Regulatory Compliance currently conducts on-site audits of casino operations, and under the amended compact will have oversight to ensure regulatory compliance and the integrity of event wagering. 

OIGRC is the entity authorised under the state of Wisconsin/Tribal Compacts to ensure effective concurrent regulation by both the state and the tribes of the class III casino gaming operated by the 11 federally recognised tribes in Wisconsin. 

This includes on-site audits of casino operations for compliance with internal control standards, audits of gaming financial data, and investigation of vendors conducting gaming-related business with Wisconsin Tribal gaming operations.