Lawmakers to Tribe Lets Talk

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                                 THE SECOND STREET JOURNAL
                                     NO. 29: September 26, 2003

                                                                   been part of the discussions all along and are
 TOP STORIES                                                       aware of what's happening, Howard Hughey, a
                                                                   spokesman for the mayor, said Friday.

 Detroit gaming houses close to                                    The investor groups that created the MotorCity
 settling lawsuit                                                  and Greektown casinos were granted
                                                                   preferences because they pushed the
 September 20, 2003
                                                                   statewide ballot measure that voters approved
                                                                   in 1996 allowing casinos in Detroit.
                                                                   Hughey said the deal hasn't been sealed. "The
 As a possible settlement was being ironed out
                                                                   mayor is anxious to hopefully reach a
 Friday in the long-running lawsuit over Detroit's
                                                                   settlement next week," he said.
 casinos, one person familiar with the
 discussions said a small Upper Peninsula
                                                                   The lawsuit has dragged on since 1997, when
 Indian tribe could get $78 million over 25 years
                                                                   the tribe, which is based in Watersmeet, said
 from two of the city's three casinos. MotorCity
                                                                   granting preferences to two groups for casino
 and Greektown, the two casinos that were
                                                                   licenses made the process unfair. A federal
 granted preferences in the ordinance that set
                                                                   judge in Grand Rapids has twice thrown out
 up gambling in Detroit, would each pay half, or
                                                                   the tribe's claims, and the U.S. 6th Circuit
 $39 million, said the person, who agreed to
                                                                   Court of Appeals in Cincinnati has twice
 speak only on condition of anonymity.
                                                                   overturned the judge's decisions. The appellate
                                                                   judges said the tribe's constitutional rights were
 That's a lot of money for the Lac Vieux Desert
                                                                   violated. The case now sits before the appeals
 Band of Chippewa Indians, Michigan's
                                                                   court, which has scheduled no hearings but
 smallest tribe with just 430 members. But for
                                                                   has tried to get the parties to settle.
 the casinos, the annual payments would be
 barely more than a day's revenue. For the city,
                                                                   For the past year, the court has prevented the
 ending the lawsuit successfully would mean
                                                                   casinos from putting shovels in the ground to
 1,200 new hotel rooms and other benefits,
                                                                   build casino-hotels with 400 rooms each, until
 possibly in time for the January 2006 Super
                                                                   the case is resolved.
                                                                   On Friday, the casinos were mum, and the Lac
 MGM Grand Detroit Casino, which won its
                                                                   Vieux tribe's attorney and the tribe's business
 casino bid without a preference, would not
                                                                   partner, Don Barden, did not return calls.
 share in the payments. MGM Grand officials
 were not at a marathon session Mayor Kwame
                                                                   Patrick Diedrickson, senior securities analyst
 Kilpatrick said he held Saturday, but they have
                                                                   for H&R Block Financial Advisors in Detroit,
who covers the Detroit gambling industry, said      possess no such credentials.
if the settlement ends up being $39 million over    The letter goes on to say, euphemistically, that
25 years, it won't hurt the casinos' bottom line.   U.S. Federal Court Justice Thomas Platt’s
"It's not a lot," he said.                          decision last month to halt construction on the
The settlement would amount to $1.56 million        casino for 18 months shouldn’t be viewed as
a year for each of the two casinos. Last month,     either defeat or victory for either side, but that it
MotorCity took in just over $1 million a day and    “presents us all with an opportunity” for
Greektown Casino took in a little less than that.   compromise.
Diedrickson said MotorCity and MGM Grand            The letter also states that, should the
already are making "fantastic returns any           Shinnecock continue on its present course, the
investor would be happy with."                      future would be rife with “years of conflict
                                                    …and ill will from the community” with little
But Jake Miklojcik, a consultant in Lansing who     chance of a casino actually being built.
has done financial studies for several casinos,
said the money "is not a drop in the bucket."       Lawmakers are proposing that the Tribe meet
"If it was, they wouldn't have negotiated over it   with state and local officials to explore “good
this long," he said.                                faith” alternatives to casino -- with the caveat
                                                    that whatever they come up with is unlikely to
                                                    be as lucrative as a gaming facility. In doing
Lawmakers to Tribe: Let’s Talk                      so, according to the letter, the Tribe would
                                                    pursue a “certain course,” would avoid years of
By Michael Colello (Source: Southampton             litigation, and could preserve the “long-
Independent online)                                 standing, good relation” between the Tribe and
                                                    the adjacent community.
The Shinnecock Indian Nation received a letter
last week from four prominent New York              According to Thiele, alternatives to be
lawmakers offering to meet with the Tribe to        discussed could include purchase of
discuss alternatives to the construction of an      development rights or the possible
Indian gaming facility at the Westwoods parcel,     implementation of a non-gambling tourist-
in Hampton Bays.                                    based operation. Thiele added that his office
The letter, signed by State Assemblyman Fred        has received an “initial call” from the Tribe, but
Thiele, Congressman Timothy Bishop, Senator         that no meeting has been definitively set up.
Ken LaValle and Southampton Town
Supervisor Patrick “Skip” Heaney, and sent
last Thursday, states the “critical juncture” the
                                                    Indian gaming is good
issue has reached and that the tribe must           for tribal, nontribal
cooperate with state and local authorities.
“No Indian nation will succeed in operating a       economies
full casino gambling facility without compliance    BY ERNEST L. STEVENS JR.
with relevant state and federal law,” the letter
states. “Casino gaming on eastern Long Island
                                                    First and foremost, Indian tribes are sovereign
is opposed by local officials and the public at
                                                    nations — governments — with a vision for the
large … the chance that a gambling casino on
                                                    future of our peoples.
eastern Long Island will ultimately be approved
is negligible.”
                                                    From the first days of the United States, Indian
The letter restates what the legislators have
                                                    nations maintained their right to self-
long maintained: to open a casino the Tribe
                                                    government. Legendary chiefs, such as Red
must first acquire federal acknowledgement,
                                                    Jacket, Tecumseh, Osceola, Red Cloud,
have the federal government take the land
                                                    Cochise, Crazy Horse and Dull Knife, fought to
where the casino is to be located into trust, and
                                                    protect our ways of life and our right to pass on
enter into a compact with the state of New
                                                    our traditions and values to our children and
York to permit casino gaming. The Shinnecock
grandchildren. Although the United States           many other essential governmental
often broke the peace and instead                   programs.
implemented policies of assimilation and
genocide against our peoples, the treaty            Not only is Indian gaming beginning to turn
guarantees of tribal self-government are still      around tribal economies, it's also helping non-
the supreme law of the land, according to the       Indian communities in economic need. With
U.S. Constitution. That Constitution requires       the economic slowdown across the United
that the United States government honor those       States, many states are facing difficult budget
treaty obligations.                                 shortfalls. Given the historic destruction of
                                                    tribal economies and the fact that most Indian
The legacy of the Indian wars and western           tribes are just taking the first steps on the long
expansion dispersed tribal communities across       road to economic self-sufficiency, it is ironic
the nation. Tribes were left to eke out the most    that tribal governments are aiding state and
meager living on the poorest corners of our         local communities.
aboriginal lands, or, worse yet, were "removed"
from our ancestral homelands to places west         Through Indian gaming, tribes indirectly
of the Mississippi in the 19th century version of   contribute to federal, state and local budgets.
ethnic cleansing. Other policies encouraged         Employment and economic activity caused by
the slaughter of our food sources and               Indian gaming increases federal, state and
prohibited Indian people from practicing our        local payroll, vendor, employee income and
native religions, speaking our native               other taxes, and revenue sharing and other fee
languages. The results of these policies:           agreements to the tune of $6 billion annually.
poverty and destitution.
                                                    Considering the question of revenue sharing,
However, tribal governments and Indian              the first principle is that Indian tribes are
people — all but forgotten and pushed aside —       governments and, as governments, cannot be
persevered. Since the late 1960s, tribal            taxed by other governments. Thus, just as
governments have exercised their original,          state lottery revenues are not subject to
inherent powers of self-government by using         taxation, tribal government revenues are not
gaming — just as states use lotteries — as a        subject to state taxation. The Indian Gaming
means of creating employment and generating         Regulatory Act reflects this principle by
a steady stream of tribal governmental              providing that if a state asks for taxation during
revenue.                                            compact negotiations, such a request is prima
                                                    facie evidence of bad faith.
Indian gaming has proved to be the most
important avenue for tribal economic                The secretary of the interior has, however,
development. In just 30 years, Indian gaming        permitted revenue-sharing agreements where
has had a substantial impact on Indian              there is a clear, substantial benefit to the tribal
communities — and is beginning to reverse the       government to justify revenue sharing and
devastation of the policies of the 1800s. Indian    ensure that it is not simply a state tax in
gaming generates more than 300,000                  disguise. Caution must be exercised in this
American jobs, provides tribal governmental         area, because revenue sharing cannot be
revenue to build essential infrastructure such      justified in many regions of Indian country.
as schools, health clinics, roads, clean water
systems, communication systems and                  So, in our view, states and local governments
recreations centers — and also helps                must first recognize the substantial benefits to
fund essential programs such as                     their communities because of Indian gaming.
education, child and elder health care,             And they should not forget that tribal
law enforcement and fire protection                 governments must first take care of their own
programs, water and sewer services and              communities, which still have a long way to go
                                                    to reverse the economic devastation of the
1800s. Again, it's ironic that the governments    CNIGA ACTIVITIES
that aided in that devastation now seek Indian
country's aid.                                    9/16-18: CNIGA at Global Gaming Expo Week,
                                                  Las Vegas Convention Center; see Nationwide
Nevertheless, tribes realize that we are all in   Events below for details.
this together. They will continue to help their
neighbors, as long as they are shown the          10/2: CA Tribes Meeting on Sacred Sites;
respect and recognition they have earned.         Hyatt Hotel, Sacramento, CA 10 am

                                                  10/13-17: CNIGA Responsible Gambling
                                                  Awareness Week; contact CNIGA for details
                                                  10/23: CNIGA Monthly Meeting, Fantasy
Please welcome Felicia D. Kaufman to the          Springs Casino, 84245 Indio Springs Parkway,
Phoenix, Arizona office. Felicia is a legal       Indo CA
secretary with 13 years of experience in
litigation, real estate, eminent domain and       NATIONWIDE EVENTS
other practice areas. She has a B.S. degree
from Arizona State U. in Global                   SEPTEMBER 2003
Business/Information Systems Management.
Felicia will be visiting the Sacramento office    9/29-10/2: NIHB 2003 Consumer
this week for orientation.                        Conference, Radisson Riverfront
                                                  Hotel, St. Paul, MN: for reservations
Plans are underway to expand the Arizona          call (651) 292-1900
office and relocate it to Tempe. Rob Rosette
and Felicia will be spearheading this project.    9/29-10/3: 13th Annual Indian Land
                                                  Consolidation Symposium, hosted by
Please welcome Dessa Romasanta to the             the Confederated Salish & Kootenai
Sacramento office. Dessa is a part-time file      Tribes at the KwaTaqNuk Resort.
clerk who was hired to fill in for Jay Maschas’   Reservations call: 800/882-6363 or
reduced work hours. Jay is pushing to             direct at 406/883-3636. For more
complete his final year of law school at          information go to or
McGeorge.                                         contact Marlena Johnson or Theresa
                                                  Carmody at: 505/247-9561 or
CALIFORNIA GAMBLING CONTROL                       505/668-9013
                                                  9/30-10/2: Indian Child Welfare
The CGCC’s next scheduled meetings are:           Training Institute, Best Western
                                                  Doublewood Inn, Bismarck, North
                                                  Dakota. For more information call
Wednesday, October 8, 2003 at 2399
                                                  Kim Just at NICWA at: 503/222-4044
Gateway Oaks Dr. Suite 100, Sacramento
                                                  ext. 113
CA, 1:30 pm
                                                  OCTOBER 2003
Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Wednesday, November 5, 2003                       10/2-3: Conference on Tribal Councils
Wednesday, November 19, 2003                      and Tribal Courts, Conference Center
Wednesday, December 3, 2003                       at the Seattle Center, Room A,
Wednesday, December 17, 2003                      Seattle, WA. Hotel: Homewood
                                                  Suites (4 blks from Seattle Center)
                                                  Reservations call: 206/281-9393
(“Subject to change without notice”)              For more information call Elizabeth
Fry at: 509/826-6821 or fax:                   Mashantucket, CT: Call 800-369-9663
509/826-2223 or e-mail:                        for reservations.
                                               10/23-24: Trading at the River
10/3-6: International Indian Treaty            Conference, Portland, OR. For more
Council Conference Sac and Fox                 information contact Kayeri Akweks,
Indian Nation, Oklahoma. For more              Special Projects Manager at
information e-mail Shelly Vendiola at:         ONABEN: A Native American                       Business Network at: 1/800/854-
                                               8289 or 503/968-1500 or web site:
10/7-9: Region 10 Tribal Leaders     
Summit and Environmental
Management Conference. Coeur                   10/24-25: Statewide Indian Parent
d'Alene Casino Resort Hotel, Worley,           Forum, Holiday Inn, Billings, MT; for
ID. For more information contact               info contact: Leslie A. Munro,
Tiffany Allgood at: 208/686-8802 or   - 338-7646,
for registration and/or vendor                 Browning, MT;
information contact April Mettler at:          Norma Bixby,,
208/686-5602 or e-mail:                        477-6602, Lame Deer, MT;                      Arlene Augare,
10/7-8: Fall Great Plains Indian               338-3334, Heart Butte, MT;
Gaming Association Quarterly                   Thomas Brown,
Meeting, Harrah’s Prairie Band                 768-3524, Poplar, MT
[Potowatami] Casino, Mayetta KS:
call GPIGA at 701-255-9275 for
information; 1-800-HARRAHS for                 NOVEMBER 2003
hotel reservations.
                                               11/16-21/03: NCAI 60th Annual
                                               Session, Hyatt Regency Hotel,
10/10: Government-to-Government Tribal         Albuquerque, NM; pre-registration
Summit, Helena MT; contact Lori Ryan, [MT]     deadline is 10/31/03; visit
Office of Indian Affairs 406-444-3702 email: to                              register online.

10/13-17: Responsible Gambling                 11/18-20: Indian Child Welfare
Awareness Week, a California Tribal            Training Institute, Monarch Hotel and
Government initiative.                         Convention Center, Portland, OR.
                                               For more information call Kim Just at
10/20-22: NIGA Casino Manager                  NICWA at: 503/222-4044 ext. 113
Certification - Security/Surveillance
and Accounting Departments. Palm               11/20-22: American Indian Science
Springs, CA. Click Here for pricing,           and Engineering Society Conference,
agenda, travel and hotel details, or           Convention Center, Albuquerque NM;
call 202-546-7711 x217.                        register online at
& EXPO (United South & Eastern
Tribes) Hosted by the Mashantucket             DECEMBER 2003
Pequot Tribal Nation; at Foxwoods
Resort Casino                                  12/10-11: NIGA’s Native American
                                               Hotel & Resort Meeting & Workshops;
details to be announced on NIGA                     tribes to share their profits, which come mostly
website                                             from slot machines.

JANUARY 2004                                        "Reel Time Bingo devices also could start
                                                    showing up in traditional tribal bingo parlors
1/14-15: Western Indian Gaming                      and on tribal lands currently without gambling,
Conference, Palm Springs                            emerging as competitors in gambling markets
Convention Center, Palm Springs CA.                 established by other tribes or commercial
                                                    "…A spokesman said the American Gaming
2/23-25: NCAI Executive Council                     Association, which represents the commercial
Winter Session; Wyndham Hotel,                      casino industry, was studying the ruling and
Washington DC; see NCAI National                    had no comment.
Calendar online for updates.
                                                    "…But Reel Time game manufacturer
SEPTEMBER 2004                                      Multimedia Games Inc. of Austin, Texas, was
                                                    bracing for plenty of orders for the new games.
9/25-28: American Indian-Alaska                     Multimedia's stock rose $4.65 a share
Native Tourism Association                          Wednesday, closing at $34.60.
Conference; Green Bay, WI.
                                                    "…Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline earlier
NIGC ANNOUNCEMENTS AND                              this week filed a lawsuit against the national
NEWS                                                commission and the U.S. Department of the
                                                    Interior, seeking to shut down the 7th Street
NIGC Ruling will be Far                             Casino, alleging violations of federal
                                                    environmental and historic preservation
Reaching                                            laws…"

MISSOURI – As reported by the Kansas City           TRUST FUND LITIGATION
Star:: "Gambling devices that look and play
like slot machines are not slots but a version of
bingo, the National Indian Gaming Commission
                                                    Cobel Lawsuit Ruling
has ruled.                                          'Historical'
                                                    Says Interior must provide full accounting
"That distinction means American Indian tribal      by 2007
casinos can offer the slotlike machines to the
                                                    WASHINGTON DC Sam Lewin 9/25/2003 (source: Native
public without state consent or oversight. The
long-awaited ruling blurs the line between
categories of federally licensed tribal gambling    Native American groups at the forefront of the
activities and could trigger the explosive          battle to seek a full accounting of Indian Trust
growth of tribal slot parlors nationwide.           Funds are hailing today’s decision in the Cobel
                                                    lawsuit by a federal judge as “ historical.”
"`The ramifications of this decision are far-
reaching,' Merrill Lynch gaming industry            U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth said he
analyst David Anders said Wednesday.                would give the Interior Department another
                                                    chance to account for money owed to
"`Losers may be state governments,' which           American Indians. He set a deadline of 2007,
cannot prohibit the slot-machine-like games,        with several intermediate deadlines along the
said Anders, and thus lose whatever leverage        way. His decision came after a 44-day trial.
they might have had to persuade gambling
But Lamberth expressed little faith that would       Department of Interior.''
actually happen, saying he didn’t believe the
Interior was incapable of providing an               Lamberth’s decision is the latest chapter in a
accounting.                                          multi-part case that began with a lawsuit
                                                     against the Interior Department seeking an
“ Rather, it is that the Court has no confidence     accounting of billions of dollars the government
that Interior is willing to actually implement an    has held in trust since the late 19th century.
adequate accounting, ” Lamberth wrote.
                                                     The trust fund was started after the breakup of
Interior Department spokesman Dan Dubray is          Indian reservations in the 1880’s. Indians were
not in his office this week and could not be         allotted beneficial ownership of the lands with
reached for comment. An official with Justice        the government acting as trustee. That meant
Department said the case is currently being          it was the government’s sole responsibility to
reviewed.                                            keep track of all proceeds from land, mineral or
                                                     oil sales. A class action lawsuit sought to
The Native American Rights Fund was                  determine how much money remained in those
enthusiastic in their reaction to Lamberth’s         accounts and reform the way federal officials
decision. NARF filed the case in 1996.               keep track of the money….

“ I think it’s a well-reasoned decision by the                 LAWYER LEVITY
court,” NARF Attorney Keith Harper told the
Native American Times shortly after reading
the decision. “ He has recognized the duties                      What's your wife's name?
that the federal government has to individual
Indians. He took great pains to delineate the        St. Peter is questioning three married couples to see
common law duties. It is the first time someone      if they qualify for admittance to heaven.
has said that in such specific terms.”
                                                     "Why do you deserve to pass the Pearly Gates?" he
Plaintiffs in the case argued that the Interior      asks one of the men, who had been a butler.
Department was incapable of accounting for
the money and petitioned Lamberth to strip the       "I was a good father," he answers.
department of its oversight of Indian funds.
They sought an outside party to manage the           "Yes, but you were a drunk all your life. In fact,
money. Lamberth said no, but Harper believes         you were so bad you even married a woman named
the ruling will probably result in an independent    Sherry. No admittance."
receiver anyway. Harper says the 2007 date is
preceded by several other deadlines.                 St. Peter then turned to the next man, a carpenter,
                                                     and asked him the same question.
“ He’s got this outside date [of 2007] but he
has numerous interim dates to determine if           The carpenter replied that he had worked hard and
they are fulfilling the order. If not, we can take   taken good care of his family.
additional action if it is clear Interior is not
taking the proper steps,” Harper said. That          But St. Peter also rejected him, pointing out that he
additional action could include another request      had been an impossible glutton, so much so that he
for an independent receiver.                         married a woman named BonBon.

Cobel attorney Dennis Gingold said                   At this point the third man, who had been a lawyer,
Lamberth’s ruling was a worst-case scenario          stood up and said, "Come on, Penny, let’s get out of
for Interior.                                        here."

"They can't do it. It's absolutely impossible. He
has created the worst nightmare for the

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