The Mississippi Legislature legalized dockside casino gambling with the passage of House Bill 2 in the 1990 Special Legislative Session. This bill established the Mississippi Gaming Control Act to be in force and effect from and after its adoption on June 29, 1990.The Gaming Control Act established the Mississippi Gaming Commission to regulate dockside casinos. The Commission regulates charitable gaming pursuant to the Charitable Bingo Law. The Mississippi State Tax Commission initially regulated gaming in order to prepare the Commission to assume this responsibility October 1, 1993. The Commission is headed by three Commissioners who are appointed by the Governor. Each Commissioner serves staggered four year terms. The law also provides that no Commissioner will serve more than ten years of total service. The Governor appoints the Chairman. The Commissioners are responsible for hiring a full-time Executive Director who is responsible for all authorized positions.
The Charitable Gaming Law authorized the play of bingo in order to fund groups, associations or clubs that are registered with the Secretary of State’s Office as non-profit organizations. It also limits the times and number of games that are allowable each day and week.
The first regulated bingo hall opened in October of 1992. Charitable gaming is now conducted in about half of the counties in Mississippi.