State claims Ho-Chunk Nation owes $72M for compact

The state of Wisconsin claims the Ho-Chunk Nation owes $72 million under a disputed Class III gaming compact.

The state and the tribe signed a compact that authorized more Class III games in exchange for a share of the revenues. But the compact has been the subject of litigation in the state and federal courts.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court initially invalidated the provisions that authorized more Class III games. So the tribe stopped offering the games.

"Our position is we owe them nothing," a tribal attorney told the Associated Press.

A subsequent Supreme Court ruling upheld the Class III provisions of the compact. That prompted the state to sue the Ho-Chunk Nation in federal court. Oral arguments were heard by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals last week.

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Losing Ho-Chunk lawsuit could blast $72 million hole in state budget (AP 11/2)