Wiyot Tribe campaigns for 'yes' vote on gaming referendum


A banner in favor of Proposition 48. Image from Yes on 48

The Wiyot Tribe doesn't operate a casino but has a major stake in a gaming referendum that's on the California ballot.

The tribe is campaigning for Yes on Proposition 48. If the referendum is approved, the tribe will get a share of revenues from an off-reservation casino operated by the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians.

"We are letting people know to have a yes vote on 48," Cheryl A. Seidner, a Wiyot council member, told The Eureka Times Standard. "Most of our Wiyot tribal citizens live in Humboldt County — we are hoping this will help us and will help the county."

Rival tribes, however, are funding the campaign against the North Fork casino. One tribe in particular -- the Table Mountain Rancheria -- has spent more than $8 million to defeat Proposition 48.

A description of Proposition 48, from the California Secretary of State, follows:
Proposition 48 - Referendum to Overturn Indian Gaming Compacts
If signed by the required number of registered voters and timely filed with the Secretary of State, this petition will place on the statewide ballot a challenge to a state law previously approved by the Legislature and the Governor. The law must then be approved by a majority of voters at the next statewide election to go into effect. The law ratifies two gaming compacts (with the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians, and the Wiyot Tribe); and it exempts execution of the compacts, certain projects, and intergovernmental agreements from the California Environmental Quality Act. (13-0007)

Get the Story:
Wiyot Tribe has stake in casino plan before voters (The Eureka Times Standard 10/10)

An Opinion:
Doug Porter: Prop 48: Are Casinos Coming to Your Neighborhood? (The San Diego Free Press 10/10)

California Court of Appeal Decision:
Picayune Rancheria v. Brown (September 24, 2014)

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

Related Stories
Rival tribe donates another $5.4M to block North Fork casino (10/9)

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