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Descendants want off-reservation casino at Indian allotment

Filed Under: Casino Stalker
More on: igra, off-reservation, quinault, samish, suquamish, washington

Trust land at 1321 North Callow Avenue in Bremerton, Washington. Image from Google Maps

Descendants of a Quinault Nation woman want to open a casino on their family's allotment in Bremerton, Washington.

The 0.79-acre site at 1321 North Callow Avenue was placed in trust for Roberta Law Ross sometime in the 1920s. It's remained in her family ever since.

“We’ve always dreamed about the idea of having a casino here, but we needed to find a partner,” Kevin Chambers, who is a Ross descendant, told The Kitsap Sun. “The property is unique, and affords a really special opportunity, not just for us but for the city.”

Opening a casino raises some legal issues. The site is already in trust so it meets part of the definition of "Indian lands" under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

However, IGRA also requires a tribe to exercise "governmental power" over the land in question. In this case, the Suquamish Tribe has been issuing licenses to the family to operate a fireworks stand on the allotment -- tribal headquarters are about 24 miles away.

But family members are apparently enrolled with the Samish Nation, according to a 2009 Kitsap Sun article. The tribe's headquarters are 144 miles away.

News reports don't say whether family members have maintained connections with the Quinault Nation.

Get the Story:
Developers hope to bring casino to Bremerton's Callow Avenue (The Kitsap Sun 6/15)
Callow Avenue fireworks stand will stay closed through summer (The Kitsap Sun 5/14)
Bremerton sues Callow Avenue fireworks stand (The Kitsap Sun 3/25)

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