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Gambling Commission, Skokomish Indian Tribe reach tentative agreement on gaming compact amendment

Posted on:  February 26, 2020

2/27/20 - UPDATED TO INCLUDE HEARING DATES

OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington State Gambling Commission has reached a tentative agreement with the Skokomish Indian Tribe on an amendment to its Class III gaming compact. The amended compact includes updates to regulatory and operational processes and also clarifies provisions. The tribe operates the Lucky Dog Casino, located on the Skokomish Reservation, just south of Hoodsport.

“This agreement modernizes the Skokomish Indian Tribe’s gaming compact and adds important funding for problem gambling research and treatment,” said Washington State Gambling Commission Chair Bud Sizemore. “It is also a testament to the robust government-to-government relationship we enjoy with the tribe.”

In addition to updating operating standards and clarifying jurisdiction and most–favored-nation provisions, the following is a summary of the main modifications:

Forms of Payment – Adds the use of near-field communication (NFC) devices, chip-enabled cards or “smart cards,” or similar secure payment technologies, upon agreement.

Prohibition of Firearms – In addition to those already authorized to enter the facility armed, this allows the tribe to authorize other gaming facility employees to be armed due to the facility’s remote location.

Licensing/Certification/Eligibility/Registration - Tribal gaming employees will continue to be licensed by the tribe, and the tribe has the option to use certification, eligibility, or registration processes. Manufacturers, distributors, service suppliers and certain financiers are still required to be licensed by the tribe and certified by the state.

Problem Gambling – The tribe will create and maintain a responsible gambling program, and will provide funding for: problem gambling treatment of non-Indian members, in-treatment facilities, problem gambling studies, and/or the support of responsible gaming policy.

Appendices:

  • Appendix C - In the event the tribe opens a second gaming facility and operates more than 60 tables, the tribe must enter into a gaming station transfer agreement to lease Class III gaming stations from another tribe.
  • Appendix W – Provide a framework to review and approve a wide-area progressive connected to the Tribal Lottery System.
  • Appendix Y - Provide the basic core requirements for electronic gaming devices that either allows players to compete for a number from a predetermined set of numbers (each associated with a specific outcome), or in a pooled wagering system whereby prizes are awarded from a wagering pool.
  • Appendices X, X2, X2 Addendum, and Appendix X2 Revisions relating to Tribal Lottery System operation.

Next Steps:

  1. Formal notification about the proposed compact amendment will be conveyed to the Governor, Legislature and others.
  2. The Senate Labor and Commerce Committee will hold a public hearing on March 4, 2020 at 8:30 a.m. The House Commerce and Gaming Committee will hold a public hearing on March 9, 2020 at 9:00 a.m.
  3. The Gambling Commission will vote at its public meeting on April 9, 2020, 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 Skokomish Indian Tribe’s tribal-state compact for Class III gaming was originally signed on May 25, 1995 and this is the fifth amendment. Public comments regarding this compact amendment may be submitted to compactcomments@wsgc.wa.gov.

Full proposed amendment 

Media Contact: 

Heather Songer
Public Information Officer
Washington State Gambling Commission
(360) 486-3485 desk
(360) 584-2877 cell
heather.songer@wsgc.wa.gov