Two Indian Tribes in Oklahoma Get New State Gaming Compacts

Two Indian Tribes in Oklahoma Get New State Gaming Compacts

Two Indian tribes in Oklahoma recently reached new gaming compacts with the state. The compacts allow them to continue operating Class III gaming activities in their casinos. It includes table games and slot machines.

15-year compacts reached

Republican Governor Kevin Stitt announced new 15-year gaming compacts with the Comanche Nation and the Otoe-Missouria Tribe. The Lawton-based Comanche Nation owns four casino properties while Red Rock-based Otoe-Missouria owns five properties. The new compacts will witness the tribes paying 4.5% to 6% of their gross gaming revenue accrued via slot machines and table games with Oklahoma.

Two Indian Tribes in Oklahoma Get New State Gaming Compacts

If the tribes go on to build new casinos in the state, they will pay 13% of their GGR from Class III gaming activities. It would depend on the net casino wins. The tribes are also allowed to start sports betting with a 1.1% total handle going to the state. The tribes will not be able to take bets on Oklahoma school teams as well as collegiate games happening within the state.

Stitt stated,

“The compacts take a sound approach to assessing the value of substantial exclusivity in a modernized tribal gaming industry, and importantly, the compacts expand opportunity for both the compacting tribes and the State to compete in future gaming markets.”

Disputes with tribes don’t end here

Oklahoma has been in friction with the 38 federally recognized tribes located in the state, of which 35 run Class III gaming facilities. According to the Stitt, 15-year gaming compacts signed with the tribes in 2004 have expired on January 1, 2020. The state and tribes must now sit down to create new compacts. On the other hand, the tribes suggest that the compacts were set for automatic renewal after 15 years.

The state’s tribes have been sharing 4% to 6% of their GGR with the state. Stitt believes that the tribes should share more with the state. Ironically, he is a member of the Cherokee Nation, a prominent tribe that is at odds with the state. Stitt suggests that since the contracts expired in January, the tribes are running their gaming operations illegally in the state. In response, The Cherokee Nation, Chickasaw Nation, and Choctaw Nation filed a lawsuit against the governor. Numerous other tribes have joined the litigation now. They have been ordered to enter mediation but these efforts are getting delayed because of the coronavirus outbreak.

About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.