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Information on Minnesota State Agencies, Boards, Task Forces, and Commissions

Compiled by the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library

Tribal State Compact Negotiating Committee

Active dates:1989-
Established by Governor Rudy Perpich

To negotiate with Minnesota Indian bands and communities, compacts concerning Class III video games of chance.


In 1988 Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA). IGRA divided all types of gambling on Indian land into one of three classes. If a state permitted a form of gambling for non-Indians for any purpose, including social or charitable purposes, a tribe in that state had the right to request negotiation of a compact that would permit that form of gambling on the tribe's land.

In Minnesota the legislature responded in 1989 by passing legislation authorizing the governor to negotiate class III tribal-state compacts. On July 14,1989, Governor Perpich appointed a three-member committee to negotiate with the Indian Bands and Communities.The committee consisted of State Senator Ron Dicklich, State Representative Becky Kelso and then Revenue Department Attorney, Dorothy McClung. The Attorney General was appointed legal counsel to the committee.

Representatives of Minnesota Indian bands met formally with the state negotiating committee on numerous occasions between August 2, 1989 and October 13, 1989. On October 20,1989,Governor Perpich signed Tribal-State compacts with seven Indian tribes regarding only the operation of Class III video games of chance. Subsequently, Governor Perpich signed two additional video compacts. Governor Carlson signed video compacts with the two remaining Indian bands in the spring of 1991.

The 11 virtually identical compacts established:
• duration and procedures for renegotiation,
• the allocation of regulatory and criminal jurisdiction,
• regulatory standards for operation of the games and employment of staff,
• qualifications for distributors and lessors of the video games,
• extensive technical specifications for the video games, and
• remedies for violation of the compact.

The compacts addressed two fundamental concerns of the negotiating committee: the qualifications of gaming facility employees and the security of the video gaming equipment used at the facilities. Because of these, the committee included the provisions relating to criminal jurisdiction, the licensing of employees, and the inspection and testing of the video gaming devices.


The 1989 original members were: Senator Ron Dicklich, Representative Becky Kelso and Revenue Department Attorney, Dorothy McClung.

A footnote on page 16 of the 1991 "Report to the Legislature on the Status of Indian Gambling in Minnesota" says this: "Upon Dorothy McClung's departure from state service, Governor Perpich appointed Lottery Director George Andersen as Chair of the Tribal-State compact negotiating committee. Governor Carlson subsequently changed the composition of the Committee to include Tom Gilbertson as Chair, State Senators Charlie Berg and Pat McGowan, State Representative Gil Gutknecht and Lottery Director George Andersen."

Note: The Legislative Reference Library may have additional reports on or by this group available through our catalog.
News clippings and documents. Agencies Notebook Collection, 1991-2005.
Record last updated: 08/22/2023

All information on this group from the Library’s collection of agency notebooks has been digitized. These materials are incorporated into the “documents/articles” section of the record. Please contact a librarian with any questions. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.

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