Casino Stalker

Leader of Sault Tribe vows push for off-reservation gaming bids

Artist's rendering of the proposed Kewadin Lansing Casino in Lansing, Michigan. Image from Sault Tribe

The leader of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians vowed to keep seeking approval of two off-reservation casinos in Michigan.

The tribe filed land-into-trust applications for sites in Lansing and in Huron Township in June 2014. The Bureau of Indian Affairs has yet to make a decision but Chairperson Aaron Payment said the projects will remain a top priority as he announced his campaign for re-election.

"Several key projects hang in the balance including our ‘Mandatory Trust’ petition with the US Department of Interior for our downstate gaming expansion projects. Our people approved this project via referendum and I want to see it through," Payment said in a press release.

The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians hopes to turn an old church at 36181 Sibley Road in New Boston, Michigan, into a gaming facility. Image from Google Maps

The tribe believes the BIA must approve both applications because the properties were acquired in connection with the Michigan Indian Land Claims Settlement Act. A similar mandatory acquisition was approved for an Arizona tribe but the decision took 18 months. There is no timeline, however, for the BIA to act.

The tribe hopes to build the Kewadin Lansing Casino on the site in downtown Lansing. The Huron Township site is less than 7 miles from the airport in Detroit.

Get the Story:
Payment announces intent to seek reelection (The Sault Ste. Marie Evening News 3/21)

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