The State Budget Committee and the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians are working to finalize a gaming compact that would bring slot machines, table games and sports wagering to the Four Winds tribal casino in South Bend. Our partners at The Times of Northwest Indiana report the compact would allow the Pokagons to offer Class III gaming and replace its Class II bingo devices with traditional slot machines.
The compact would also add table games with dealers, a sports book and a mobile sports wagering application.
“Negotiations are in a very late stage but there is not currently an executed compact,” said Sara Tait, executive director of the Indiana Gaming Commission.
Under Indiana law, the compact must be negotiated between the governor and the tribe and approved by the General Assembly before going to the U.S. Department of the Interior for final ratification.
The Pokagons, which operate the South Bend casino as well as three other tribal casinos in southwestern Michigan, initiated negotiations in 2019.
The publication reports the tribe is already paying 2% of its Indiana win to the city of South Bend, or a minimum of $1 million a year. The city has allocated half the revenue to its general fund and half to the city’s redevelopment commission.
According to The Times, Tait declined to provide the committee specific details of the compact or negotiations. Both parties believe a deal could be reached in the next few weeks.
The Pokagons are the only federally-recognized Indian tribe in Indiana. This is the first gaming compact being negotiated for Indiana.