Editorial: Talk to Muscogee Nation about trust land
"City leaders' concerns over expanding Indian trust land are understandable. After all, land held in trust is exempt from certain taxes, which obviously has a negative impact on city revenues.

Opposing the Muscogee (Creek) Nation's efforts to put land on the east and west sides of the Arkansas River into trust is a legitimate course for city councilors to pursue, and may have some influence on the federal officials who ultimately will make the decision.

But there are other factors to take into consideration, and perhaps now is the time to take a longer view at the bigger picture.

The Creeks reportedly want to build a shopping center on 25 acres on the west bank, and presumably also have plans for a smaller parcel near their new casino on the east side.

City councilors are considering a resolution opposing new trust status for the lands, and Mayor Kathy Taylor is expected take similar action.

While city leaders are justified in attempting to protect the city's revenue base, tribal leaders, too, have a responsibility to protect the tribes' revenue sources. There also is this to consider: In legal battles with local and state governments, tribes tend to have a higher likelihood of prevailing these days — a trend some view as unfair and others see as payback. "

Get the Story:
Editorial: Trust issue (The Tulsa World 7/9)

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