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More tribes in Wisconsin might soon offer sports gambling, Oneida Casino official bets

Potawatomi casinos are latest to add sportsbooks

Sports betting terminals at Oneida Casino
Oneida Casino in Green Bay launched its sports betting terminals on Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. It’s the first legal sports betting in Wisconsin. Megan Hart/WPR

As Potawatomi casinos become the latest in Wisconsin to offer sports betting, a top Oneida Casino official is forecasting further expansion of sportsbooks in the state.

Oneida Nation’s main casino in Green Bay started offering bets on sports about a year and half ago. Last week, the Potawatomi Hotel and Casino in Milwaukee launched its own sportsbook.

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“No pun intended, I’d probably bet that they’re looking at: Is it a good business model for them and where they are?” said Chad Fuss, gaming chief financial officer for Oneida Casino. “It’s great that the rest of the tribes are researching it, and they’re going to help grow the tribes’ sports bet booking in the state of Wisconsin.”

Fuss recently appeared on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “The Morning Show” to discuss how sports betting is faring after Oneida first signed compacts with the state to allow it. Fuss said he was surprised how many customers recently visited to bet on college basketball tournaments.

“We’re trying to give them the best experience possible,” he said. “And we’re trying to give them the best entertainment as possible.”

Officials speak at the 2021 opening of legal sports betting at a Green Bay Casino
Oneida Nation Vice Chair Brandon Stevens speaks alongside members of the Business Committee on Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. The event marked the first day of legal sports betting in Wisconsin. Megan Hart/WPR

At Oneida Casino, bettors can wager on site with a cashier, at a kiosk or through an app that is limited by location. Fuss said he does not believe the app will be open statewide anytime soon.

Betting on the tournaments was popular even though customers were barred from gambling on Wisconsin Division I teams, such as the Marquette University Golden Eagles. The rule resulted from negotiations with the state. About half of the 30 states with sports betting have similar policies, Fuss said.

READ MORE: Tribal leader calls for support from Wisconsin lawmakers at 2023 State of the Tribes address

The casino monitors customers for irregular betting patterns, encourages responsible gambling and backs organizations that support people with addictions, Fuss said. Customers may tell the casino they want to be barred from gambling there, too.

“We are very highly regulated,” he said.

Asked if the casino views uncontrollable gambling as a health problem, Fuss said the casino closely follows regulations that involve identifying people who need help.

“I’m not going to get into all the details of what we do, but we do at points in time assist with ensuring that individuals cannot bet outside of their means,” he said.