10th Circuit revises Wyandotte Nation casino opinion

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday published a revised opinion in favor of the Wyandotte Nation's out-of-state casino in Kansas.

The court arrived at the same conclusion as it did last October. A three-judge panel dismissed Kansas' lawsuit against Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne because the land where the tribe opened a casino is already in trust [PDF: Revised Opinion].

However, the court addressed a sovereign immunity issue raised by Kempthorne. Government attorneys, in a petition for rehearing, said that issue was never briefed [PDF: Petition].

In response, the court granted the petition, vacated the October opinion and published the revised opinion in which two paragraphs that discussed the sovereign immunity issue were removed [PDF: October Opinion].

Government attorneys also asked the 10th Circuit to remove a passage in the October opinion in which two judges suggested the state of Kansas should be allowed to reopen the case. But that portion remained intact in the revised opinion [PDF: State Response].

The tribe opened a Class II facility in downtown Kansas City earlier this month. The site was taken into trust with land claim settlement funds.

Get the Story:
10th Circuit dismisses Kansas City casino land lawsuit (The Journal Record 1/31)
Oklahoma casino setting up shop in Joplin mall (KOAM 1/31)