OLYMPIA, WA – A tentative agreement has been reached by the Washington State Gambling Commission (WSGC) and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation to amend the tribes’ Class III gaming compact. The amendment adds new provisions for operation of the Yakama Legends Casino in Toppenish.
“This amendment provides the Yakama Nation the opportunity to modernize and improve gaming for their guests,” said WSGC Chair Alicia Levy. “We at the Gambling Commission are grateful for the successful negotiating process that clears the way for this update.”
Changes to the compact include provisions to operate higher wager limits and extend credit to customers. Also included is additional funding earmarked for public programs.
Next steps include:
- Formal notification about the proposed compact amendment will be conveyed to the Governor, Legislature, and others.
- The Senate Labor and Commerce Committee and House Commerce and Gaming Committee will hold a joint public hearing on July 25, 2022, at 1pm.
- The Gambling Commission will vote at its public meeting on August 11, 2022 and decide whether or not to forward the proposed compact amendment to the Governor.
- If the commission votes to forward the Nation’s amendment, it will be sent to the Nation’s Chair for final consideration and signature.
- Once the Nation’s Chair signs the amendment, it will be sent to the Governor for final consideration and signature.
- After obtaining the signatures of the Nation’s Chair and the Governor, the Nation will send the amendment to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Interior for consideration, signature, and publication in the Federal Register.
The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 provides that Indian tribes may conduct Class III gaming activities on Indian lands when the gaming is conducted in conformance with a tribal-state compact. RCW 9.46.360 provides that the Gambling Commission negotiate those compacts on behalf of the state. The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation’s tribal-state compact for Class III gaming was originally signed on June 9, 1996, and this is the fourth amendment.