HomePublicationsNewsletter ArchiveNewslettersVolume 22Issue 16MICHIGAN’S FIRST CLASS II GAMING FACILITY TO OPEN NEXT WEEK IN MACKINAW CITY

According to the St. Ignace News, next Wednesday, May 25, 2016, the Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians (“Tribe”) will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony for its newly constructed 5,000 square foot Odawa Casino Mackinaw. Following the ceremony, the Class II casino will open its doors to the public. The casino will operate weekdays from noon to 10 p.m.  and weekends noon to midnight.

The facility will feature Class II casino games, which under federal law, may offer bingo, pull-tabs, and similar games. However, the casino will not have house-banked card games nor slot machines.

The Tribe has made several attempts to open a gaming facility on its land near Mackinaw City. The most recent attempt was an October request made to the Mackinaw City Village Council for their approval of a Class III casino with 64 slot machines, which was denied by a 4-3 vote. Prior to this, the Tribe had sought and been denied local approvals twice since 2003.

Local approvals are necessary for a Tribe to construct a Class III, casino-style gaming facility; however, the current Class II facility does not require such approvals under federal law.

The Tribe currently operates the Odawa Casino Resort in Petoskey. Under the Tribe’s Tribal-State Gaming Compact, the Tribe may build a second facility on land holdings in Emmet or Charlevoix Counties. The second facility, however, must first receive the approval of the local unit of government affected by the development.

 

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