The Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans has sued the U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne and other DOI officials alleging they arbitrarily and capriciously denied the tribe’s application to take land into trust in the Catskills earlier this year.
The tribe contends the DOI made unsupported assumptions in a supposed “guidance” document that imposed new requirements on the location of off-reservation casinos.
The Wisconsin-based tribe lodged its suit was filed in the United States District Court, Southern District of New York.
The Tribe first submitted its application to take land into trust in Sullivan County to operate a gaming facility in what it says is its ancestral New York homeland nearly seven years ago.
The tribe has offered to settle its claim to land in Madison and Oneida counties for the rights to develop a casino in the Catskills.
“With the largest projected state deficit in recent memory and an economic collapse not seen since the Depression, our proposal for economic stimulation in the Catskills must be given a fair review, as we are entitled by law,” said Robert Chicks, President of the Stockbridge-Munsee Community, Band of Mohican Indians.
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