Catawba Nation still waiting for answer on casino land-into-trust

Artist's rendering of proposed Catawba Nation casino in North Carolina. Image from Catawba Nation Project Brief

The Catawba Nation of South Carolina is approaching the two-year mark of a land-into-trust application for its proposed casino in North Carolina.

The tribe submitted the application to the Bureau of Indian Affairs in September 2013. But there's no indication of when a decision might come since the agency is not required to follow any timelines.

The application, in theory, should not be complicated. The Catawba Indian Tribe of South Carolina Land Claims Settlement Act mandates the BIA to place up to 3,600 acres in trust for the tribe in a service area that covers several counties in North and South Carolina.

But mandatory acquisitions do not happen overnight. In the case of the Tohono O'odham Nation in Arizona, the BIA took 18 months to make a decision for an application that also was submitted under a land claim settlement act.

In the meantime, the Catawba Nation is back in the news. Chief Bill Harris said the tribe is in talks with Hard Rock International to brand the proposed casino in Cleveland County in North Carolina.

Get the Story:
Catawba Indian Nation pushes for $600M casino in Kings Mountain (WSOC 7/30)
Casino branding: Catawba Indians in talks with Hard Rock (The Kings Mountain Herald 7/30)

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