Members of the tribes accepted $138,000 in gifts at the Chinook Winds Casino in Lincoln City, the National Indian Gaming Commission said. The regulatory agency accused the council and its members of violating federal gaming laws by accepting the money in the form of gifts at the tribe's casino - such as dinners and show tickets, during 1999. Such freebies for council members' personal use is not authorized use of casino revenue, said Kyle Nayback, director of congressional and public affairs for the agency. "The purpose of the ... act and Indian gaming generally is to provide revenue so that tribal governments can fund social programs and provide for the needs of its tribal members," Nayback said. "What is not within an acceptable use is free personal meals for tribal council members and free show tickets." Siletz Vice Chairwoman Bonnie Petersen issued a statement saying it is confident a complete review of the expenditures will show legitimate expenses ... comps as operating expenses, not net revenue. The notice of violation is a civil matter, not criminal. No fines were imposed. The agency accused the Siletz of violating its own tribal gaming ordinance, the national Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988, agency regulations and the tribal-state gambling compact.
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