After starting out with just one location outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin sports betting will soon be available in Milwaukee. Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers announced he had reached a new gaming compact with the Forest County Potawatomi.

The new tribal-state gaming compact, if approved, would allow a retail sportsbook at the Potawatomi Casino and Hotel in Milwaukee. Three other locations where the Tribe operates casinos are also covered by the new agreement.

Wisconsin Sports Betting Is Growing Piecemeal

After launching at the tail end of 2021, Wisconsin sports betting continues to inch forward. Governor Evers, partially due to the partisan political climate in his state, has determined striking individual, updated gaming compacts with Wisconsin’s federally recognized Native American Tribes is the best way forward.

Giannis dunks against the New York Knicks
Bucks fans will soon a local sportsbook to wager on their team’s games in Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

First, the Oneida Nation reached an agreement to open a sportsbook at their casino near the Green Bay International airport. Though Green Bay is known for the Packers, the city is small and remote, nearly two hours from Wisconsin’s major population centers to the South.

After the Oneida Nation, the St. Croix Chippewa Tribe was next to strike a new deal with Governor Evers and his representatives. The St. Croix Chippewa Tribe plans to launch three retail sportsbooks, all in remote northern Wisconsin locations. Their sportsbooks should be operational soon.

Now, it looks like Milwaukee, the state’s chief city and home of the Bucks and Brewers, will have retail wagering options.

New Compact Still Requires Federal Approval

Wisconsin’s new gaming compact with the Forest County Potawatomi will now be reviewed by the federal Department of the Interior. The department has jurisdiction over all tribal gaming compacts nationwide. Because the new deal is limited to retail, in-person wagering on tribal property, there are few concerns it will face legal scrutiny. Florida’s failed compact with the Seminole Tribe is still front-of-mind for many in the tribal betting industry.

Assuming the Department of the Interior approves the new compact within the 45-day legal window, the Forest County Potawatomi will then start building new sportsbooks. There are plans to open Potawatomi run wagering operations in four locations:

  • Forest County
  • Menominee Valley
  • Milwaukee
  • Wabeno

However, it is the Milwaukee location that is the most significant. Another major American city that hosts top-level professional sports teams will have easily available sports betting. According to reports, the Milwaukee sportsbook at the Potawatomi Hotel and Casino could be open by the end of 2022.

Cliff Spiller

Cliff Spiller is a veteran casino writer with decades of experience under his belt. He's played at –and reviewed– countless of online casinos, and has written dozens of casino game guides. His strategy articles, and gambling news updates have been a fixture in the industry since 2004. A native of North Texas, Cliff is a long-suffering Dallas Cowboys fan. He enjoys sports and games of all sorts, including sports betting.

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