The Tule River Tribe
continues to push for a move of its casino to a new, off-reservation site in California.
The tribe plans to move the Eagle Mountain Casino
to a more lucrative location. An environmental impact statement
for the project is being reviewed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs
Among other factors, the agency will consider the impact on the local community.
The tribe has asked the city of Lindsay for a letter of support
and is negotiating agreements with the city of Porterville and Tulare County, The Porterville Recorder reported.
“This is the farthest [along] we’ve ever been,” Chairman Neil Peyron said at a project update last month, The Recorder reported.
The tribe is pursuing the relocation under the two-part determination provisions
of the Indian
Gaming Regulatory Act
. The process requires approval first by the BIA and then by the state governor.
If the state governor concurs with the BIA's determination, the 40-acre site for the casino must still be placed in trust. A separate decision is required at the federal level.
But the tribe must still return to the table as part of its Class III gaming compact. An amendment to the existing agreement calls for further negotiations to address the off-reservation casino.
Despite the many hurdles, the tribe remains optimistic. A draft environmental impact statement is expected in July, though the BIA is under no obligation to make a decision under any deadline.
The tribe's request for support from the city of Lindsay will be considered at a council meeting
on Tuesday evening. The city is about 13 miles from the Porterville
Airport Industrial Park
, where the casino would be relocated. Eagle Mountain is currently about 20 miles away.
Read More on the Story:
Council asked to support EMC move
(The Porterville Recorder March 13, 2018)
Tribe expects key decision in July
(The Porterville Recorder February 24, 2018)
Federal Register Notice:Notice
of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Tule River
Tribe's Proposed Fee-to-Trust and Eagle Mountain Casino Relocation Project,
Tulare County, California
(December 30, 2016)
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