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Massachusetts Law About Indian Casinos

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Massachusetts Laws

MGL c.23K. An Act Establishing Expanded Gaming in the Commonwealth. Will permit three casinos and one slots-only casino in the state. Has several provisions particular to Indian tribes.

Federal Laws

25 USC 2701 et seq.: Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. Sets the terms for how tribes are allowed to operate casinos and bingo parlors; and well as enabling off-reservation land for casinos. Defines the three classes of gaming.

15 USC 1171-1173: Johnson Act. Regulates gambling devices.

Federal Regulations

25 CFR 290 Tribal Revenue Allocation Plans

25 CFR 291 Class III Gaming Procedures. Used when a state and an Indian tribe are unable to voluntarily agree to a compact and "the State has asserted its immunity from suit brought by an Indian tribe under 25 U.S.C. 2710(d)(7)(B)."

25 CFR 292 Gaming on Trust Lands Acquired After October 17, 1988. Effective June 19, 2008. "Articulates standards that the BIA will follow in interpreting the various exceptions to the gaming prohibitions contained in section 2719 of IGRA."

Selected Case Law

California v. Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, 480 US 202 (1987). Court held that states can't interfere with tribal gaming; that tribal gaming is outside direct state regulation.

Carcieri v. Salazar, 555 US 379 (Feb. 24, 2009). "The term "now under federal jurisdiction" in [25 USC] ยง479 unambiguously refers to those tribes that were under federal jurisdiction when the IRA [25 USC 465] was enacted in 1934," and so "the Secretary [of Interior] does not have the authority" to take land into trust for tribes recognized after 1934.

Other Web Sources

Improvements Needed in Tribal Recognition Process, General Accounting Office, 2001. Appendix 2 outlines the tribal recognition process, and Appendix 3 covers issues related to tribal gaming.

NIGC Bulletin 05-1 Use of Net Gaming Revenues Bulletin, National Indian Gaming Commission. Bulletin was written "to encourage tribes to employ policies and procedures in their expenditure of tribal gaming revenues that comply with IGRA and will minimize complaints and misunderstanding among the tribal membership and interested outside parties."

Mashpee Wampanoag Archive, Cape Cod Times. A collection of articles on the Mashpee Wampanoag and their casino negotiations.

US Dept. of Interior Rejects Compact Between Mass. and the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, October 12, 2012.

Agencies and Tribes

Bureau of Indian Affairs. Responsible for recognizing tribes and tribal land, revenue allocation and more.

Department of Justice Office of Tribal Justice. "OTJ is the primary point of contact for the Department of Justice's government to government relationship with Indian tribes."

Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. Tribe actively pursuing a casino.

National Indian Gaming Commission. Has primary responsibility to oversee Indian gaming.

Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah).

Print Sources

Deal or No Deal (Audio CD): Transacting in Native America, American Bar Association, 2008.