10th Circuit refuses to rehear Kialegee Tribal Town gaming case

Artist's rendering of the proposed Red Clay Casino in Broken Arrrow, Oklahoma. Image from Red Clay Casino

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday refused to rehear a gaming dispute between the state of Oklahoma and the Kialegee Tribal Town.

The tribe started building the Red Clay Casino on an Indian allotment near Tulsa. Work stopped when a federal judge put a halt to the project in response to a lawsuit from the state.

The 10th Circuit, however, lifted the injunction last month. Citing the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community, the court held that the tribe and its leaders are protected by sovereign immunity.

The state asked for a rehearing but the court denied the request yesterday. The judges also issued an amended opinion and noted that the allotment is not considered "Indian lands" as that term is defined by the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

The National Indian Gaming Commission has issued two opinions stating that the allotment cannot be used for gaming. The tribe has not said whether it will sue the NIGC to challenge those determinations.

10th Circuit Decision:
Oklahoma v. Hobia (December 22, 2014)

NIGC Indian Land Opinions
May 25, 2012 | June 8, 2012

Supreme Court Decision:
Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community (May 27, 2014)

Related Stories:
Kialegee Tribal Town welcomes decision in gaming dispute (11/12)
Supreme Court ruling bodes well for tribes in gaming cases (11/11)
10th Circuit rules for Kialegee Tribal Town in casino dispute (11/10)

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