Indian Gambling Regulation Act Law and Legal Definition
Indian Gambling Regulation Act of 1988 establishes the jurisdictional framework that governs Indian gaming. The Act provides a legislative basis for the operation/regulation of Indian gaming. Accordingly, the Act protects gaming as a means of revenue generation for the tribes, encourages economic development of these tribes, and protects the enterprises from negative influences.
This Act also establishes the National Indian Gaming Commission and also provides it with regulatory mandate. This Act delegated new authority to the U.S Department of the Interior and created new federal offences, giving the U.S. Department of Justice authority to prosecute them.
This Act establishes three classes of games with different regulatory scheme for each. They are:
1. class I game. The regulatory authority over class I game is vested on the tribal governments;
2. class II games. Tribal governments are responsible for regulating class II gaming with Commission oversight;
3. class III games. The regulatory scheme for class III gaming is more complex than a casual reading of the statute might suggest. Although Congress clearly intended regulatory issues to be addressed in Tribal-State compacts, it left a number of key functions in federal hands, including approval authority over compacts, management contracts, and Tribal gaming ordinances.