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Voters reject North Fork Rancheria off-reservation gaming deal

Filed Under: California | Casino Stalker | Compacts
More on: bia, california, elections, land-into-trust, north fork, off-reservation

Artist's rendering of the proposed North Fork Rancheria casino. Image from North Fork Casino Environmental Impact Statement

California voters roundly rejected off-reservation gaming deal for the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians on Tuesday.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, only 39 percent of voters backed Proposition 48, according to the California Secretary of State. Some 60 percent rejected it.

The final outcome, however, only means the tribe's Class III gaming compact has been overturned on the state level. The Bureau of Indian Affairs has already approved the agreement.

The BIA also already placed the 305-acre gaming site in trust and tribal leaders have said they will develop the land no matter what voters say. A Class II facility is an option or the tribe could ask the BIA to approve Class III gaming procedures in lieu of a state-approved compact.

There is also nothing that prevents the state from entering into another compact although doing so carries great political risk. Tribes with existing casinos poured more than $22 million into the campaign against the North Fork project and their involvement sends a strong warning to the executive and legislative branches on any future deals.

Get the Story:
California Prop 48 Tribal Gaming Measure Defeated (AP 11/5)
North Fork casino compact losing in statewide proposition (The Fresno Bee 11/5)
Proposition 48, To Permit Vegas-Style Indian Casino In Central Valley Trails In Early Returns (CBS/AP 11/4)

Federal Register Notices:
Indian Gaming (October 22, 2013)
Land Acquisitions; North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians of California (December 3, 2012)

Bureau of Indian Affairs Documents:
Press Release | Fact Sheet: North Fork Rancheria Decision | Section 20 Determination: North Fork Rancheria

Related Stories:
Column: Rival tribes ask voters to block North Fork casino bid (11/4)
Opinion: North Fork Rancheria gaming deal deserves 'yes' vote (11/3)
Editorial: Off-reservation gaming project unfair to other tribes (10/31)
Editorial: Keep tribal casinos in California on existing Indian land (10/30)
Pechanga Band chair featured in ads against North Fork casino (10/29)

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