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Shinnecocks Tell Cuomo to Open L.I. Casino Talks

Tribal leaders reject Cuomo's remarks that discussion of Indian gaming on Long Island should wait until after a casino referendum.

The Shinnecock Nation Tribal Trustees took exception to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's remarks this week that it would be "unrealistic" to open talks now regarding an Indian casino on Long Island.

In a statement Tuesday, the Trustees say the Shinnecocks "are a tribal nation, not a competitor or a gaming corporation with no community ties, seeking only to enrich itself," and they should not have to wait to get a seat at the table.

As reported in Newsday Monday, Cuomo said talks should wait until after a public referendum is held on allowing for seven new casinos to be built across the state — expected no sooner than fall 2013. He reportedly said he wants to have a competition for the seven best casino proposals.

The Trustees retorted, "What is 'unrealistic' is that we should have to wait two years for the possibility of the legalization of commercial gaming before a meeting of substance occurs with the governor to discuss Indian gaming, while commercial gaming corporations enjoy free access to present their gaming visions."

The Shinnecock tribe, based on a reservation in Southampton, received federal recognition in 2010.

"It is the inherent right of the to pursue self-sufficiency by engaging in gaming under the National Indian Gaming Regulatory Act," the Trustees' statement read. "It is quite evident that political leaders across the Island support our efforts."

Tony Ernst June 06, 2012 at 10:43 AM
The New York Times reported on Monday: "A group closely allied with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo received $2 million from gambling interests last December as he developed a proposal to expand casino gambling in New York. ................" http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/05/nyregion/gambling-interests-gave-cuomo-ally-millions.html?_r=1&ref=nyregion
Robert L. Olson June 06, 2012 at 11:53 AM
In the end, it is always going to be about the money and who gets it.
Harold Monteau June 06, 2012 at 02:21 PM
The Tribe, if the Governor refuses to negotiate, is no longer obligated under the IGRA to file a "bad faith" lawsuit in Federal Court previous to approaching the Secretary of Interior to issue "Alternative Gaming Procedures" which are authorized in the act. Those court remedies were gutted by the Supreme Court leaving the tribe with only one legal recourse if the state refuses to compact; a petition to the Secretary to issue the above mentioed Alternative Gaming Procedures. The Secretary would have to approve it lest he be sued by the tribe for treating the Shinnecock differently than the other tribes in NY that have compacts. The tribe would eventually prevail, leaving the state completely out of the revenue stream or regulatory scheme. If the state does not want to play ball when the ball is in their court, so to speak, the tribe has the option of taking the ball to the other avilable court, where the Federal Team will play ball. Leave the state out, Shinnecock.
Nancyann June 06, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Nooooooooo to a casino on Long Island. The roads are congested enough.....

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