NIGC Chairman Faces Senate Hearings Alone

Jonodev Chaudhuri is pretty much a one-man band on the National Indian Gaming Commission. Currently he is running the commission on his own, which regulates the Indian gaming industry. There are normally three NIGC members.

The National Indian Gaming Commission currently has only one member, its chairman, Jonodev Chaudhuri, who occupied his position in May.

When Chaudhuri was installed as chairman, there were still two members of the NIGC, himself and Daniel Little. Little left in May.

When Little left he made it clear that it wasn’t because he didn’t like the incoming chairman. He told Indian Gaming Magazine, “The Chairman’s commitment to Indian Country is palpable in the execution of his daily obligations to the agency and I will miss not being a part of NIGC’s continued effectiveness under his leadership.”

The commission is responsible for regulating the tribal gaming industry. Created by the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988, it called for a three-person panel. The chairman is nominated by the president and approved by the Senate and the other commissioners are appointed by the Secretary of the Interior. This is the first time in many decades that the commission has had fewer than three members.

Chaudhuri insists that the commission is functioning as intended. His first appearance before the Senate since being confirmed as chairman will focus on the integrity of Indian gaming.