Analysis

Synopsis:

 House Bill 288 (HB288) Relating to gaming by creating the New Mexico Gaming Reform Commission and requiring that the Commission provide recommendations for conducting gaming in New Mexico and requiring a report by November 15, 2021, and declaring an emergency. 

Analysis:

 HB 288 creates a temporary Commission called the New Mexico Gaming Reform Commission that will make recommendations for conducting gaming in New Mexico by November 15, 2021. 

The New Mexico Gaming Reform Commission consists of nine members, no more than five of whom shall be from the same political party, as follows: (1) the Director of the Legislative Finance Committee;(2) three members appointed by the Governor; and (3) five members appointed by the New Mexico Legislative Council. The appointing authorities shall make every effort to ensure that there are five members who will provide broad tribal representation from gaming and non-gaming tribes and three members who are agents of racetrack casinos. 

The Commission shall elect a chair and may elect such officers as it deems necessary to carry out its duties. Two absences from meetings of the Commission constitute grounds for the removal of a member of the commission. Upon the request of the Chair of the Commission, the appointing authority shall replace a member who has failed to attend two meetings of the Commission. 
A majority of the members constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The support of a majority of the members appointed is required for adoption of any action by the Commission. The Commission shall review the overall gaming industry in New Mexico, including its present status and future outlook; federal and state laws that apply to the gaming industry; the 2015 Tribal-State Class III Gaming Compact.

Also, the Commission will review casino gaming trends, industry developments both in the region and nationwide, and included internet gaming, sports wagering, and class II and class III gaming. Further, review the federal tribal gaming legislation and the structure of compacts, approaches to revenue enhancement, and taxation structures, and responsible gaming best practices.

The Commission is to develop policy proposals for changes to applicable New Mexico laws and compacts that will input from all tribal nations, tribes, and pueblos in New Mexico. Also, all fraternal organizations with gaming operations race track casinos licensees, the Gaming Control Board, and the state gaming representative.

The Commission shall review the Indian Gaming Compact, the Gaming Control Act, and any other relevant legislation and make specific recommendations and revisions. Such recommendations and revisions may include initiation of the process contemplated for negotiation of a Compact Negotiation Act.

The Commission may hire staff including legal staff and appropriate staff may conduct interviews on behalf of the Commission. The Commission may also use the Legislative Council Service and appropriate interim legislative committee by November 15, 2021.

Members may be compensated for expenses as per the Mileage and Per Diem Act. 

HB 288 declares an emergency.

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