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US appeals court curbs federal authority to regulate tribal gaming

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia [official website] has ruled that the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC) [official website], does not have authority to regulate how certain games, including blackjack and slot machines, are run on Indian casinos. The dispute arose in 2001, when the NIGC attempted to audit an Arizona casino run by the Colorado River Indian Tribes [official website] in order to force it to comply with federal regulations. In his opinion [PDF text] Friday, Judge A. Raymond Randolph [official profile] affirmed a lower court ruling and found that there was no statutory basis to authorize the NIGC to regulate blackjack and slot machine operations as "Class III" games.

The NIGC does have authority, however, to regulate games such as lotto and bingo run by the tribes, but Class III games generate the most revenue. AP has more.

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