Compacts | Openings and Closings
Jena Band goes to Class II after governor refuses compact

The Jena Band of Choctaw Indians will begin construction on a Class II facility next week.

The tribe has been trying to open a casino for more than a decade. But its plans fell victim to Jack Abramoff, who enlisted politicians to fight the tribe.

The scandal ended years ago but the tribe still faces opposition. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) won't even sit down to discuss a Class III gaming compact, Chief B. Cheryl Smith said.

"Our one regret is that despite our repeated and best efforts to secure a gaming compact, Gov. Jindal has refused to meet with or even speak to us about this agreement that would allow us to make impact payments to the local government through the state," Smith said in a press release.

Abramoff's clients included tribes in Louisiana and Mississippi that were worried about competition from a Jena Choctaw casino.

Get the Story:
Jena Choctaw will start to build casino in Grant Parish (The Alexandria Town Talk 3/14)
Ground broke for Choctaw Casino (The Jena Times 3/14)