DOJ: News Release

New Appointments to Gambling Council

HELENA – Attorney General Mike McGrath has appointed two new members to three-year terms on the Gaming Advisory Council.

Bill Thomas, a retired teacher and administrator from Great Falls, will represent the public on the council. Thomas is a former Montana state senator and member of the State Board of Public Education. He replaces James Thompson of Kalispell.

Tim Carson of Billings will serve as an industry representative. Carson is president and chief executive officer of Summit Amusement & Distributing, Ltd., a Billings company that manufactures video gambling machines. He replaces Steve Nelson of Missoula.

Speaker Dan McGee, R-Laurel, also announced the appointment of Rep. John Witt, R-Carter, to serve as the legislative member from the House. Witt is a rancher who has served as Choteau County Commissioner, and as a member of the Montana Association of Counties and the National Association of Counties. He replaces former Rep. Larry Grinde, R-Lewistown.

The Gaming Advisory Council was created in 1989 to study all aspects of gambling in Montana, to review and comment on administrative rules proposed by the Department of Justice’s Gambling Control Division, and to make recommendations to the department and the Legislature on gambling-related matters.

Under state law, the council is made up of nine members: one each from the Senate and the House of Representatives, one public member, two local government representatives, one Native American representative and three gaming industry representatives. The legislative members are selected by legislative leaders, and the attorney general appoints the remaining members.

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