Gambling Commission, Puyallup Tribe of Indians reach tentative agreement on gaming compact amendment

OLYMPIA, Wash. - The Washington State Gambling Commission has reached a tentative agreement with the Puyallup Tribe of Indians on an amendment to its Class III gaming compact. The Puyallup Tribe of Indians operates two casinos -- the Emerald Queen Casino I-5 in Tacoma and the Emerald Queen Hotel & Casino in Fife.

This is the first of two amendments that will reflect current regulatory practices, reduce duplication between tribal and state regulators and clarify the roles for each party, said Commission Chair Bud Sizemore.

This amendment clarifies the definitions of €˜gaming operation' and €˜tribe,' allowing tribally-chartered entities, wholly-owned by the Tribe, to own the Class III gaming facilities. (Full amendment attached)

These changes are consistent with several other tribes' gaming compacts. Negotiations regarding several other changes are ongoing and will be included in a separate amendment.

Next Steps:

  1. Formal notification about the proposed compact amendment is conveyed to the Governor, Legislature and others.
  2. The House Commerce and Gaming Committee will hold a public hearing on Oct. 19, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.
  3. The Gambling Commission will vote at a special public meeting on Oct. 19, 2017 and decide whether or not to forward the proposed compact amendment to the Governor.
  4. If the Commission votes to forward the Tribe's amendment, it will be sent to the Tribal Chair for final consideration and signature.
  5. Once the Tribal Chair signs the amendment, it will be sent to the Governor for final consideration and signature.
  6. After obtaining the signatures of the Tribal Chair and the Governor, the Tribe will send the amendment to the Secretary of the United States Department of Interior for consideration, signature and publication in the Federal Register.

The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 provides that Indian tribes may conduct Class III gaming activities on Indian lands when the gaming is conducted in conformance with a tribal-state compact. RCW 9.46.360 provides that the Gambling Commission negotiate those compacts on behalf of the state. The Puyallup Tribe of Indians' tribal-state compact for Class III gaming was originally signed on May 28, 1996 and this is the fifth amendment. Public comments regarding this compact amendment may be submitted to