The only form of legal sports betting in Wisconsin is through retail sportsbooks at tribal casinos. The current list of available locations is rather limited at this time. However, expansion into the major market of Milwaukee is on the way.Jump to
Current Retail Sports Betting in Wisconsin
An amended gaming compact between Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers and the Oneida Nation paved the way for legal sports betting in Green Bay. The governor also signed an amended compact with the St. Croix Chippewa Indians to expand retail sports betting into northwestern Wisconsin.
There are no state laws in place with provisions for legal online sports betting. Rather, Wisconsin lawmakers have remained idle while yielding to the existing network of gaming tribes to operate legal sports betting operations.
As one of the bigger gaming tribes in the state, the Oneida Nation took the lead. The amended compact was first approved in the summer of 2021.
Once it received the stamp of approval on the federal level, plans were put into place for a retail sportsbook at Oneida Casino near the Green Bay airport. By November of last year, the retail sportsbook at this casino was open for business.
The St. Croix signed their tribe’s amended compact towards the end of 2021. The most notable casino property with retail sports betting would be Turtle Lake Casino.
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The Most Recent Amended Wisconsin Gaming Compact
The expansion into the Milwaukee sports betting market will be led by the Forest County Potawatomi. Their amended gaming compact with Gov. Evers has been approved and signed. The next step is federal approval by the US Department of Interior.
This final step in the approval process can take up to 45 days as part of a general review. Given previous federal approval for the first two Wisconsin gaming tribes, this process is viewed as a mere formality.
The retail sportsbook at Milwaukee’s Potawatomi Hotel & Casino should be up and running by the end of 2022. The venue is located at 1721 W. Canal Street in the city.
The NFL’s Green Bay Packers accounted for much of the betting volume earlier in the year. The next retail book will be a huge draw for betting on the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks and MLB’s Milwaukee Brewers.
Future Sports Betting Expansion in Wisconsin
Absent of any specific legislative efforts, retail sports betting at tribal casinos will remain the only game in town. Future expansion is highly probable with a total of 11 federally recognized gaming tribes in the state.
The remaining eight tribes would have to negotiate an amended gaming compact as well to add legal sports betting to the list.
The Department of Administration’s Office of Indian Gaming and Regulatory Compliance oversees all the tribal casinos in the state. This department conducts regular on-site audits of every casino property.
The Potawatomi Hotel & Casino is considered to be one of the biggest gaming venues in the state. One other prominent gaming tribe that could expand into retail sports betting at some point in time would be Ho-Chunk Nation.