Openings & Closings | Public Relations

Cowlitz Tribe enters law enforcement deal as casino debut nears


Posted by ilani on Wednesday, April 19, 2017

ilani on Facebook: Opening April 24, 2017

The Cowlitz Tribe reached an agreement to allow local officers to enforce the law at its long-awaited casino in Washington.

The tribe will pay $250,000 a year to Clark County to cover the cost of law enforcement at the $510 million ilani Casino Resort, The Columbian reported. The facility opens on Monday, April 24, after a long regulatory, legal and political struggle.

“We are on the verge of opening our casino,” Chairman Bill Iyall said at a county meeting on Tuesday, when the agreement was approved, the paper reported. “This is an important element of public safety.”

According to the agreement, officers will be able to arrest non-Indians for committing crimes and misdemeanors on the reservation. The tribe will pay for the cost of prosecuting those offenders in county court.

County officers can detain Cowlitz citizens and citizens of other federally recognized tribes. But the agreement calls for handling of these cases in the federal system.

The agreement seals a dramatic turnaround for the tribe in its relationship with the county. Officials there long resisted the casino but they finally dropped litigation after a federal appeals court upheld the status of the reservation last year.

Read More on the Story:
Ilani Casino, Clark County seal policing deal (The Columbian 4/18)
Portland Meadows and the Oregon Lottery Desperately Seek Answers for a New Casino Across the River (Willamette Week 4/19)
ilani Casino to open Monday, April 24 (The Battle Ground Reflector 4/18)
ilani Casino announces two entertainment venues (The Battle Ground Reflector 4/18)
Agreements to bring law and order to casino (The Columbian 4/17)

D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Decision:
Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon v. Jewell (July 29, 2016)

Federal Register Notices:
Cowlitz Indian Tribe Liquor Ordinance (March 23, 2017)
Proclaiming Certain Lands as Reservation for the Cowlitz Indian Tribe (November 13, 2015)
Land Acquisitions; Cowlitz Indian Tribe (May 8, 2013)

Department of the Interior Solicitor Opinion:
M-37029: The Meaning of "Under Federal Jurisdiction" for Purposes of the Indian Reorganization Act (March 12, 2014)

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Cowlitz Tribe announces April 24 opening for long-awaited casino (April 17, 2017)
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Indian Country secures victory with end to long-running land case (April 3, 2017)
Cowlitz Tribe thanks Secretary Zinke as casino opening approaches (April 3, 2017)
Cowlitz Tribe brings even more food options to forthcoming casino (March 31, 2017)
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