Oregon, Tribe Announce Gaming Compact

The Cowlitz tribe, which hopes to build two casinos in La Center, Oregon, has concluded a tribal state gaming compact that would allow it to operate gaming on 152 acres.

The state of Oregon and the Cowlitz Tribe have announced a tentative tribal-state gaming compact for two casinos that the tribe wants to build in Clark County on 152 acres near La Center.

However the deal is moot until a federal court in Washington D.C. rules on a legal challenge to the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ decision to put that land into trust.

If the decision is upheld the compact would allow the tribe’s two casinos to have a total of 3,000 lottery terminals, and a total of 125 gaming tables. Legally the machines are not considered slot machines because they don’t use random number generators and players compete against each other, as they would in bingo.

Two percent of the gross receipts would be earmarked for community mitigation.

Critics of the tribe’s casino proposal note that the tribe is based in Longview in neighboring Cowlitz County and that it maintains tribal house in Toledo. The only reason the tribe wants to build where it proposes is because of the proximity to the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area.

Because of the lawsuit, Cowlitz tribal Chairman William Iyall said recently that it would be at least two years before a casino would be ready to open.