North Fork Rancheria defeats casino opponents in yet another case

The North Fork Rancheria plans to build a casino at this site along Rd 23 near Madera, California. Image from Google Maps

The North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians keeps racking up legal victories in its long-running quest to open a casino in California.

This time, the tribe and the Bureau of Indian Affairs defeated a challenged filed by Stand Up for California! and other opponents. In a lengthy ruling issued on Tuesday, a federal judge said the tribe's land was properly placed in trust by the BIA.

"While the plaintiffs’ many concerns about the impending casino development are understandable, the law is not on their side," Judge Beryl Howell wrote in the 170-page decision, McClatchy DC reported.

The North Fork Rancheria plans to open a casino on a 305-acre parcel in Madera County. The project was approved by the BIA and the state of California after the tribe went through a=the rigorous and lengthy two-part determination process of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

Opponents -- including other tribes with existing gaming facilities -- have tried to stop the project at the state and federal level and in the courts and through the political process. The efforts have resulted in numerous delays but the North Fork Rancheria continues to prevail.

Turtle Talk has posted documents from the case, Stand Up for California v. Department of the Interior.

Read More on the Story:
North Fork tribe gets court OK to build casino along Highway 99 (McClatchy DC 9/7)

Class III Gaming Procedures:
Bureau of Indian Affairs Letter | Secretarial Procedures | Mediator's Compact

Tribal Leader Opinions on H.R.5079, the California Compact Protection Act:
Maryann McGovran: Don't be fooled by efforts of 'wealthy' tribes (5/13)
Claudia Gonzales: Off-reservation gaming fuels attacks on tribes (5/13)

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

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

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