4 Winds South Bend Casino to Add Live Poker Room

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The Four Winds South Bend Casino announced earlier this week that it would be adding a live poker room, creating a new product segment amidst its extensive bingo-based slot machine offerings. The casino’s general manager, Scott Rice, told the media that construction would begin next week. The 10-table room will be built in the northwest section of the facility, which is currently occupied by slot machines.


Each table is capable of hosting up to 9 players. Completion of the new room is expected to occur by Labor Day. Offerings will include $1 to $3 Pot Limit Omaha, $3 to $6 Limit Hold ’em, $2 to $5 No Limit Hold ’em, and $1 to $2 No-Limit Texas Hold ’em.


No more new games


The new poker room will not be paving the way for other games such as baccarat or blackjack. These games require the player to play against the house; something that is prohibited for Class II casinos under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.


In poker, players play against other players, which is not prohibited.


The casino already offers video poker games. However, the inclusion of live poker with real dealers and real cards could bring up issues regarding the regulation of class II casinos. According to a clause in the act, a class II casino can offer certain card games provided that they are clearly authorized by the state or aren’t clearly prohibited.


Not too long ago, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Ho-Chunk Nation, which appealed to the state regarding the hosting of video poker games. However, in another similar case involving the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Idaho and the Coeur D’Alene Tribe, it was ruled that the tribe was in direct violation of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act since the state had banned poker altogether.


When questioned about the possible issues, Rice responded by stating that he had no idea about the rulings. Similarly, Jennifer Reske, the Deputy Director of the Indiana Gaming Commission, refused to comment on the topic.


Indiana authorizes poker


However, according to Michael Wong, the general counsel of the National Indian Gaming Commission, an entity that regulates tribal casinos, the state of Indiana does not prohibit poker.


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