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North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper signed an amended gaming compact with the Eastern Band or Cherokee Indians on Tuesday, setting the stage for legal sports betting in the Tar Heel State.

Cooper then submitted the compact to the US Department of the Interior for approval. This starts a 45-day window for the Department’s assistant secretary for the Bureau of Indian Affairs to approve the changes.

That lines up with the possibility of North Carolina sportsbooks opening by the Super Bowl.

However, the compact sets up regulatory requirements for sports betting and requires verification of internal controls that could push back the start date.

The compact does not authorize the tribe to accept any wager through a mobile device or through the internet.

In July 2019, Cooper signed into law a bill passed by the North Carolina legislature. The law added sports wagering and horse betting to permitted Class III games for the Eastern Band.

The tribe operates Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort is in Cherokee and Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River in Murphy. The resort property draws many patrons from Knoxville, the closest major metro area at about a two-hour drive away.

But the state and tribe needed to renegotiate their tribal gaming compact to include the new gaming types. That proved more difficult than expected.