Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers and Chairman Robert VanZile Jr. of the Sokaogon Chippewa Community announced Friday the signing of an agreement that allows the Tribe to offer event wagering at its Mole Lake Casino & Lodge and other locations within its reservation.
This deal, which amends the Sokaogon’s gaming compact with the state, will enable the Tribe to offer wagering on sports and other events. The signed amendment was sent to the US Department of Interior, where it will undergo a 45-day review.
In an official statement, Governor Evers said: “It is always a good day when we can use our government-to-government relationship to provide new opportunities for Tribal communities and our entire state, and I am appreciative of Chairman VanZile and the Sokaogon Tribal Council for their work with our Administration on this compact amendment.”
He added that this new agreement will generate additional revenue for the Tribe and the state, bolster local tourism and support jobs in Northern Wisconsin, which was described by the Governor as “a win-win for everyone.”
VanZile added to this criterion by speaking on behalf of the Sokaogon Chippewa community, which “appreciates working cooperatively with the state of Wisconsin to further increase economic opportunity for both the Tribe and the surrounding communities.”
The amendment comes after Governor Evers previously signed similar compacts with the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, Oneida Nation, the St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin and the Forest County Potawatomi.
It will open the door for the Sokaogon Chippewa Community to begin offering sports betting at its existing property and mobile wagering on other land within its reservation in time for the Super Bowl and college bowl games.
Wisconsin Department of Administration Secretary Kathy Blumenfeld commented: “It is our shared interests that help make these negotiations so successful for the Tribe and the state. We look forward to continuing our cooperative relationship with the Sokaogon Chippewa Community.”
DOA’s Office of Indian Gaming and Regulatory Compliance (OIGRC) currently conducts on-site audits of casino operations, and under the amended compact, will have oversight to ensure regulatory compliance and integrity of event wagering.
The Sokaogon Chippewa Community is the fifth tribe to sign a sports betting agreement with the state. The Oneida Nation was the first to do so. The sportsbook at its casino in Ashwaubenon opened last November.