Monday, 11 June 2007 02:02

Lungren Introduces Bill To Change Indian Gaming Regulatory Act

slide9HR 1654 introduced at the end of May by our own Congressman Dan Lungren is a bill that would change the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, or IGRA, to require that the Secretary of the Interior determine that a gaming establishment on certain newly acquired Indian lands would be in the best interest of not only the tribe that is proposing to develop those lands, but also that the proposed development would not detrimental to the surrounding community.
This would be required to be researched and provided for before such lands would be eligible for gaming. Generally, under IGRA lands obtained by a tribe are not allowed to be developed as casinos, however IGRA does provide for some exceptions such as the exception used by the Ione Band of Mi-wok Indians: the claim of a landless tribe that has been restored to Federal recognition. Specifically, Lungren’s bill Amends the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act to not allow certain newly acquired lands, which have been taken into trust by the Secretary of the Interior for the benefit of a certain Indian Tribe, to conduct gaming on such lands when the Secretary, after consultation with the Tribe and appropriate state and local officials, including officials of other nearby tribes, determines that a gaming establishment on those newly acquired lands would be detrimental to the surrounding community. This bill is in the first stage of the legislative process where the bill is considered in committee and may undergo significant changes in markup sessions. The bill has been referred to the following House Natural Resources Committee.