There are no Indian gaming casinos in Maine. Under terms of the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980, Maine tribes are excluded from the U.S. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 (IGRA). Recent efforts in the state legislature have sought to allow Maine tribes the right to work with the federal government for gaming rights, however, there has been no success in those efforts.
Maine has two state-licensed casinos: Hollywood Casino Bangor and Oxford Casino in Oxford. The Penobscot Indian Nation had previously operated the Penobscot High Stakes Bingo in Old Town, the only tribal gaming facility in the state. The bingo hall was permanently closed in 2015.
In April 2022 Maine legalized sports betting. Four tribes were authorized to operated mobile sports betting apps across the state. The two state-licensed casinos were authorized to operate retail sportsbooks. (See News Story)
Minimum gambling ages are 21 years old for casinos, 21 for poker, 18 for bingo, 18 for horse racing, 18 for the lottery.
Hollywood Casino Bangor
500 Main Street
Bangor, ME 04401
777 Casino Way
Oxford, Maine 04270
Penobscot High Stakes Bingo
6 River Road
Old Town, ME 04468
Located on Indian Island, Old Town
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May 5, 2022
Governor Janet Mills signed into law Monday authorizing sports betting in Maine. The launch date is expected before July 31. The four Maine tribes are each eligible for one mobile sports betting license. Ten retail licenses will be issued to commercial tracks and off-track facilities. All licensees will pay a 10% tax on sports betting revenues.
Each mobile sports betting license will cost $200,000 for a four-year term. The eligible licensees are the Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, Micmac and Maliseet Tribes. Each tribe can partner with an already operating sportbook platform.
Retail sportsbook licenses allow in-person betting only and will cost $4,000 for a 10-year term. Oxford Casino, Hollywood Casino Bangor, Scarborough Downs and seven other tracks and off-track facilities are each eligible for a retail license.
April 24, 2022
Maine has approved a sports betting bill with online licensing granted exclusively to state four tribes. Commercial casino licensing is limited to retail wagering.
Last week the state House approved Maine's sports betting bill LD585 with an 82-42 vote. The Senate followed with 23-11 approval vote. Governor Janet Mill is expected to sign the bill this week.
Under the legislation the Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, Micmac, and Maliseet tribes will each be granted an online license with a commercial platform operator. Each licensee will pay $200,000 fee renewable every four years and a 10% tax on sportsbook revenues. Online betting is estimated to be 85% of the Maine sports betting market.
The Hollywood Casino Hotel & Raceway and Oxford Casino Hotel are eligible for licensing of retail sports betting. Each licensee will pay $4,000 fee renewable every four years and a 10% tax on sportsbook revenues.
July 6, 2021
Maine Gov. Janet Mills has vetoed legislation to allow Native American tribes to operate casinos on their reservations. A House vote to override the veto failed to reach the required two-thirds majority.
Maine tribes are blocked from opening casinos by the 1980 Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act. A few years after enactment, the federal government introduced the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) of 1988, which is the founding authority that has created nearly 500 Indian gaming casinos across 29 states.
Governor Mills explained she had "serious concerns" with the legislation regarding the reinstatement of tribal rights. That prompted swift criticism from Maine's four federally-recognized tribes.
March 20, 2021
The Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians are supporting new bill in the state legislature that will allow the tribe to negotiate for a casino in Aroostook County.
Currently there are no Indian gaming casinos in Maine because the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980 blocks tribes from building casinos under the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988. Under the Maine act the tribes agreed to be subject to state and local laws and jurisdiction.
The legislative bill LD 554 would allow the four federally recognized tribes in Maine to apply to the U.S. Department of Interior for authorization under federal law to build a casino on reservation land.
The four federally recognized tribes in Maine are the Aroostook Band of Micmacs in Presque Isle, Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians in Houlton, Passamaquoddy Tribe of Indian Township in Princeton and Penobscot Nation in Old Town.
April 10, 2018
A proposed casino project by the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians has been rejected by the Maine House of Representatives. The lawmakers voted 73 to 67 against the proposed plan.
Democratic lawmakers provided 53 of the 67 votes in favor of the casino.
Rep. Henry John Bear is a non-voting member for the tribe and introduced House Order 58. He had asked the state's Supreme Judicial Court official opinion for tribal gaming.
There are currently four federally recognized tribes in Maine. As of now, there is no law in the state that allows for Native American tribes to operate table games or slot machines on their reservation land.
Under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, tribes with federal recognition are allowed to operate bingo, pull tabs, and punch boards games. These types of games fall under the Class I and Class II gaming license. Las Vegas style gaming is not allowed unless there is approval from the state.
The Houlton Band wish to build a casino in order to provide better economic opportunities for the tribe.
Last year a bill was introduced by Sen. Benjamin Collings from Portland. The bill would have allowed for the creation of gaming compacts between the tribes and the state. The Native American owned casinos would have the opportunity to operate both table games and up to 1,500 slot machines.
However, the bill did not receive the needed support to progress on. As of now it is at a stand still.
This may be due to the casino opposition by residents. Last year a casino was proposed for York County. Less than 17 percent of voters gave approval. Overall residents in Maine do not approve casino projects. Constituents have made their concerns known to state lawmakers.
There are two casinos in Maine. They are Oxford Casino and Hollywood Casino Bangor. Table games are taxed at 16 percent at both casinos. The tax rate on slot machines is 46 percent at Oxford and 39 percent at Hollywood.
Last year Oxford paid over $34.4 million in taxes to the state. Hollywood paid $16 million in taxes.
03.29.2016 Bill for Southern Maine Casino Rejected
12.23.2014 Hollywood Casino Bangor to Operate 24 hours Daily
12.01.2014 Maine to Consider Adding Additional Casinos
11.19.2014 ME Casinos Create 1,500 New Jobs
09.03.2014 Report Shows Maine Could Support New Casinos
03.07.2014 Tribal Communities of Maine to Develop Casinos
11.04.2011 Governor Lepage says No to 5 Casino Plan
09.20.2011 Oxford Casino Development partners with Silverton Casino
05.23.2011 Oxfords New Casino Project is Moving Forward
05.06.2011 State Lawmakers Vote No on New Casinos
04.07.2011 Hollywood Slots may be adding Table Games
11.03.2010 Voters narrowly approve casino in Maine
11.30.2009 99,000 signatures collected for Maine casino
10.28.2009 Casino group to begin collecting signatures
06.03.2009 Lawmakers kill casino proposal for Oxford County
03.31.2009 Bill would allow more slots in Maine
02.20.2009 Two new casino bills introduced in legislature
11.05.2008 Voters reject casino in Oxford County
10.14.2008 Passamaquoddy Tribe watch casino vote
10.09.2008 Voters will soon decide on new casino
10.01.2008 Oxford Highlands Resort-Spa-Casino
07.07.2008 Hollywood Slots moves to new home
04.16.2008 Penobscot Expansion Bill goes to Governor
04.03.2008 Casino Initiative will proceed to November Ballot
04.01.2008 House Votes for 100 Tribal Slots
03.26.2008 House Will Vote on 400 Slots for the Penobscot Nation
02.28.2008 Oxford County Casino Proposal Qualifies for Nov Ballot
02.06.2008 Penobscot Nation Wants to Add 400 Slots at Indian Island
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