Five California Indian tribes sued the State for overstepping its legal authority regarding the governing of tribal casinos in California . Tribal casinos are self-governing under federal law. Fruitless Talks
After five years of fruitless talks with the California Governor’s Office, five tribes sued the State in 2019. The five tribes in question were the Blue Lake Rancheria, the Chemehuevi Indian Tribe, the Chicken Ranch Rancheria of Me-Wuk Indians , the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians, and the Robinson Rancheria of Pomo Indians.
The tribes complained that the State’s demands violated the scope of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 (IGRA). The landmark law protects the right of tribes to pursue gaming for economic development.
The State of California tried to force tribes to comply with State laws regarding environmental land review, wages, discrimination, and damage liability for injuries on reservation lands.
States and Indian tribes negotiate tribal compacts to allow different classes of gambling within each state. Federally recognized tribes can offer Class II gaming like bingo and poker on their reservations without state approval. Class III gaming, aka Vegas-style gaming, requires complex negotiations between state and tribe. These negotiations take the form of tribal compacts. Tribal Compacts
Individual states which allow tribal gaming negotiate tribal compacts, official agreements between both parties regarding taxes, exclusive gaming rights, etc. This allows tribes to pursue Vegas-style gaming in full-fledged casinos while the state takes a cut of the profits via taxes.
California has 109 federally recognized tribes which have a monopoly on Class […]