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Women Voters: Oppose Ojibwe land-into-trust bid

"The League of Women Voters is alarmed at the recently published news that the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is recommending that “restrictions on what happens on trust land be removed” from the intergovernmental agreement between City of Beloit and the Bad River and St. Croix Chippewa bands.

The BIA wants “to make sure that there weren't restrictions on what the tribes do with the land after it was put in trust.” The intergovernmental agreement process transfers the land to a “sovereign nation.”

Once the land is put into trust, the city would have no authority over the land, now or in the future. In addition, the tribes are proposing to delete sections relating to other commercial activity, residential housing, and cigarette and gasoline sales taxes.

If the tribes are indeed successful in removing what they consider “obstacles” in the agreement, the city will have no control over the type or quality of the development, code enforcement, kinds of business activity or fair labor practices. Because the land will be totally owned and controlled by a sovereign nation, there will be no recourse through the court process.

The Beloit LWV strongly urges the city not to give up its right to regulate these basic requirements that govern the lives of all other city residents. In fact, the League recommends a guaranteed waiver of sovereign immunity so that the problems could be worked out through non-tribal court processes."

Get the Story:
League of Women Voters Letter: 'Don't give up city authority' (The Beloit Daily News 8/21)

Column: BIA moving slow on off-reservation casino (06/15)
Study touts off-reservation casino in Wisconsin (08/08)
Wisconsin tribes promote off-reservation casino (07/20)
Tribes make changes to off-reservation application (07/15)