indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Dynamic Homes
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines

printer friendly version
Appeals court rules in 'reservation shopping' dispute
Monday, November 17, 2003

A federal appeals court on Friday upheld the Bush administration's decision to take land into trust for a landless tribe in northern California.

The 3-0 decision marked the second time this year that the courts have upheld acquisitions for landless tribes. In both cases, the tribes had their federal status terminated, then later restored, by the United States.

These tribes qualify for exemptions from costly and lengthy reviews by federal bureaucrats. But as part of a growing campaign against "reservation shopping," critics say tribes aren't entitled to land away from their current location. Tribes, they say, are using loopholes to open casinos in more lucrative areas.

The campaign has had mixed success. Casino opponents have been able to delay land-into-trust decisions throughout the country but have never been able to overturn one.

At the same time, the critics have been getting more attention in Washington, D.C. Republican lawmakers inserted language into an appropriations bill suggesting that restored tribes should not be given a break on land acquisitions. President Bush signed the bill into law last week.

Friday's ruling shot down some of the main arguments of the "reservation shopping" campaign. Two cities in Placer County said the United Auburn Indian Community should not be allowed to seek 49 acres outside the boundaries of its former reservation as the reservation existed in 1967, the date of federal termination.

But a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed this claim as "nonsensical." "The Maidu and Miwok Tribes from which the Auburn Tribe descended once occupied much of central California," wrote judge Judith W. Rogers for the majority. "For the cities to now argue that the 49 acres are a windfall, as if the tribe's ancestors had never possessed any more, is ahistorical."

The court went further and said that the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), which contains the exemption for restored tribes, is not as limiting as the critics contend. Tribal lands can exist beyond reservation boundaries, the court opined.

"Given the history of Indian tribes' confinement to reservations, it is not reasonable to suppose that Congress intended 'restoration' to be strictly limited to land constituting a tribe's reservation immediately before federal recognition was terminated," Rogers wrote.

The language in the Department of Interior's appropriations act runs counter to this interpretation. It singles out two tribes for seeking trust lands out of "their traditional service area[s]" and says local communities and the state governor should be consulted on all land acquisitions. Normally, restored tribes aren't subject to these requirements, which often spell death for casino projects.

In a related case, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on August 6 affirmed a land-into-trust ruling for the Lytton Band of Pomo Indians, another restored tribe. Before the decision was handed down, two Democratic lawmakers authored a bill that would have forced the tribe to submit to more reviews at the local, state and federal level.

The United Auburn Indian Community, a small tribe of 225 members, opened its casino in July. The facility has done better than expected, bringing in an reported $75.8 million in the first quarter of operation.

Get the Decision:
City of Roseville v. Norton (November 14, 2003)

Related Decisions:
Artichoke Joe's v. Norton (August 6, 2003) | Artichoke Joe's v. Norton (July 29, 2002)

Relevant Links:
United Auburn Indian Community - http://www.auburnrancheria.com/index.html

Related Stories:
Northern Calif. casino doing better than expected (11/10)
Goodies for some in Interior's budget bill (11/6)
Congress clears Indian funding in budget bill (11/4)
Calif. tribe moving forward with urban casino plans (10/10)

Copyright � 2000-2003 Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Lakota Country Times: New Oglala Sioux leader encourages youth (1/20)
Native Sun News Today: A new leader for Great Plains tribal group (1/20)
Native Sun News Today Editorial: It's a new era for Indian Country (1/20)
Mark Charles: Decoding Trump's bid to 'Make America Great Again' (1/19)
Lakota Country Times: Another year of big news in Lakota territory (1/19)
Native Sun News Today: DefundDAPL billboard goes up in New York (1/19)
Vi Waln: Let's kick our smoking and tobacco habit in Indian Country (1/19)
Terese Mailhot: Native women care what happens to all our sisters (1/19)
Leonard Peltier remains behind bars as Obama rejects clemency (1/19)
Department of the Army takes the lead on Dakota Access Pipeline (1/18)
Dakota Access executive confirms crude already placed in pipeline (1/18)
Bureau of Indian Affairs releases annual listing of recognized tribes (1/18)
Lakota Country Times: Rosebud Sioux Tribe opens homeless shelter (1/18)
Native Sun News Today: Northern Cheyenne focuses on foster care (1/18)
Brandon Ecoffey: Be safe and be prepared as winter hits the plains (1/18)
Disenrollment epidemic affects dozens of tribes across the nation (1/18)
New battle opens as Dakota Access disputes environmental review (1/17)
Judge declines to block publication of Dakota Access Pipeline notice (1/17)
Standing Rock Sioux Tribe responds quickly to Dakota Access threat (1/17)
President Obama names first members of Native youth commission (1/17)
Tim Giago: Discovering a love for food at an Indian boarding school (1/17)
Lakota Country Times: Historic decision for Indian Child Welfare Act (1/17)
Native Sun News Today: Pine Ridge teams fight it out at the buzzer (1/17)
Delphine Red Shirt: Tournament is a testament to our Native youth (1/17)
Native Sun News Today Editorial: News for ranchers in the new year (1/17)
Gyasi Ross: Let's divest from DAPL and support Native owned banks (1/17)
Jeffrey Ostler/Nick Estes: Treaties and the Dakota Access Pipeline (1/17)
Mary Annette Pember: Bad River Band takes stand on oil pipeline (1/17)
Steve Russell: Resolutions for tribal leaders and even the Donald (1/17)
Craig Tribal Association celebrates 'historic' trust land acquisition (1/16)
Mark Trahant: Congress moves forward with repeal of Obamacare (1/16)
Native Sun News Today: Northern Cheyenne banker beats the odds (1/16)
James Giago Davies: The real power to defeat the Wasicu pipeline (1/16)
Tiffany Midge: Hollywood needs to stop stereotyping Native people (1/16)
Peter d'Errico: New book connects Native America with Palestine (1/16)
Alaska tribe makes history with approval of trust land application (1/13)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.