This week, Governor Tony Evers and Oneida Chairman Tehassi Hill signed a historic compact revision that allows for event wagering at Oneida Nation casinos and affiliate locations throughout Wisconsin.
This compact amendment will be the first in the state to enable event wagering, including sports betting. Following today’s signing, the compact modification will be sent to the Bureau of Indian Affairs of the US Department of Interior for a 45-day review.
Critical source of revenue
Said Evers: “I’m grateful to Chairman Hill and the Oneida General Tribal Council for their partnership on this historic compact amendment. The Oneida Casino is a critical source of revenue and employment for Oneida Nation and this expansion will bring new opportunities for employment and revenue growth to the tribe.”
Hill responded: “This collaboration has been a great testament to intergovernmental agencies working together. When Oneida engaged with the State of Wisconsin by signing our first gaming compact in 1991, 30 years ago, we were a reservation with a struggling but growing economy.
“Since that time we have grown tremendously and can provide a better quality of life for our Oneida people and those who live on and around our reservation. We have been fortunate to be working toward recovery in our economy and move toward keeping a safe, professional gaming entertainment facility for Wisconsin travellers.”
Months of talks
The Oneida Nation Business Committee approved the compact amendment on July 29 after months of talks between the Oneida Nation and the Wisconsin Department of Administration’s Division of Gaming.
It will now be reviewed and approved by the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, which has 45 days to do so. If legalised, the Oneida Nation will be able to begin expanding activities at Oneida Casino to include event wagering.
Remote event wagering is also permitted on land owned by the Nation or held in trust for the Nation by the federal government that contains a commercial building owned or leased by the Nation under the terms of the compact amendment. Event wagering is expected to begin in time for the 2017 football season.
DOA Secretary Joel Brennan said: “We are grateful to be able to work closely with the Oneida Nation leadership on this historic agreement.
“We also appreciate the thoughtful work from the team within the Division of Gaming that helped make this agreement possible.”
The compact amendment defines event wagering as sports and event betting on nationally televised award shows, professional sports league draft, and professional sporting events such as the National Football League, National Basketball Association, and Major League Baseball.