From: alra@governance.net
Subject: House Resources Committee To Vote Soon On Reservation Shopping

Land Rights Network
American Land Rights Association
Alliance Against Reservation Shopping
PO Box 400, Battle Ground, WA  98604
(360) 687-3087 – Fax:  (360) 687-2973
Web Address: http://www.landrights.org
Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE - Washington, DC 20003 
mike@hardimanconsulting.com -- 202-489-4893

House Resources Committee To Vote Soon On Reservation Shopping

Urgent Action Required

Your Congressman is on the Resources Committee listed below.  

He or she must hear from you today.

Action Items:  

-----1.  Call your Congressman listed below today.   Every Congressman can be called at (202) 225-3121.  His private number is below.   He is a member of the House Resources Committee.   Your Congressman must hear from you and your friends that you oppose adding a grandfather clause to the new Pombo bill, HR 4893, by amendment.  Many tribes could get their casino’s grandfathered if the grandfather clause is added to HR 4893.  Try to go to one of your Congressman’s local meetings he will be holding in your district this week.  

*****Quite a few members of the House Resources Committee are not showing up for Indian Affairs hearings.  They are not listening to witnesses.  That jeopardizes you.   It is vital that you tell your Congressman that you want him or her to attend these hearings to protect your interests and stop the grandfather clause.  The next hearing will be in early May.  Make sure he or she is in attendance.  

-----2.  Call Resources Committee Chairman Richard Pombo (R-CA) to congratulate him on his bill (HR 4893) and urge him to fight back against any attempt to add a grandfather clause by an amendment.  A press release about the bill is printed below.  His bill, HR 4893, is available at www.landrights.org. 

HR 4893 would allow the legislature and the local community to vote on the issue of new off-reservation casinos in your community.   It also would provide for other hoops for the tribes and Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) to go through.  At present BIA has no regulations governing its conduct in this process. 

-----3.  Write a short letter to the editor about the fact that your Congressman is on the Resources Committee and should vote against any grandfather amendment.

*****The House Resources Committee will hold one more hearing and then plans to mark up the new Pombo Bill against reservation shopping – HR 4893. 

*****Some tribes are fighting for a “grandfather clause” to allow them to go ahead and build a giant new Mega-Casino near where you live.  

Don’t think it’s a problem for you?

Boy, are you in for a surprise.  

With all the exceptions and the grandfather clause, there could be over 400 new casinos nationwide whose only criteria is “is the land near a freeway off-ramp near a population center.”

Do you want Donald Trump or some other giant speculator running your community?  

If a grandfather clause gets in HR 4893, the speculators like Donald Trump and other developers will win and your community will lose.  Most new off-reservation casino proposals are funded by outside speculators hoping for large windfall profits by hiring lawyers to use the many loopholes in current law. 

A grandfather clause virtually guarantees these speculators will make huge profits at your expense.   The speculators become the most powerful people in your community and really control local politics.   No politician will risk taking a position without checking with the tribe first.  That is what is happening in lots of places.  

If you help stop the grandfather clause now, most of these tribes won’t lose because the money already expended comes from speculators.  These speculators have no vested rights.  They took risks.  They are used to losing.  They are called speculators because they take big risks, and big losses and often win huge profits.  But local communities should not suffer at their hands.

Congress needs to get a grip on these loopholes and stop the exceptions and grandfather clause.   

Most of the lobbying controversy in Washington was about Jack Abramoff  and reservation shopping by tribes crossing state lines or moving outside their traditional boundaries and away form their reservation. 

There is no way to overstate how much damage these monsters can do to local communities. 

As of now, your community cannot say no to a new casino, no matter what your local laws, customs and culture say.

That means that your community could end up with one or more giant tribal mega-casinos that do not pay taxes, obey state or local laws, and often damage local communities with the ills of gambling like high crime, foreclosures, bankruptcies, and gambling addiction.   These casinos are often larger than those in Las Vegas. 

These casinos take money but don’t give much to the community.  Except they give huge donations to politicians in the political process where local officials are so afraid of them that few local decisions are made without the tribes consent. 

*****The key here is does your community have a choice?  If a community does not want a casino, it should have the ability to stop it.  But that is not how the law is written now.  Tribal casinos can be plunked down pretty much anywhere the tribes want regardless of local custom and culture.

The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) of 1988 was supposed to control this process and stop the massive expansion of casinos and keep them on traditional reservations.  

But the bill allowed exceptions.  And those exceptions have erupted into a remarkable expansion of new casinos around the country with the prospect of hundreds more damaging our communities.

*****Your Congressman is listed below. He is a member of the House Resources Committee that will vote soon.  He or she must hear from you opposing a grandfather clause to allow new off-reservation tribal casinos in your area.

*****He or she be home during the Easter Recess.  

Abercrombie, Neil (D-HI) – Phone:  202-225-2726  	Fax:  202-225-4580
Honolulu  808-541-2570  Fax:  808-533-0133
Boren, David Daniel (D-OK) – Phone: 202-225-2701Fax:  202-225-3038
Muskogee Office:  918-687-2533

Brown, Henry (R-SC) – Phone: 202-225-3176 Fax:  202-225-3407
Charleston Office: 843-747-4175 Fax:  843-747-4711

Calvert, Ken (R-CA) – Phone: 202-225-1986  Fax:  202-225-2004
Riverside Office:  951-784-4300  Fax:  951-784-5255

Cannon, Christopher (R-UT) –  Phone: 202-225-7751 Fax:  202-225-5629
Provo Office: 801-379-2500  Fax:  801-379-2509

Cardoza, Dennis (D-CA) – Phone: 202-225-6131 Fax:  202-225-0819
 Modesto Office:  209-527-1914  Fax:  202-525-5748

Costa, Jim (D-CA) – Phone: 202-225-3341  	Fax:  202-225-9308
 Fresno Office: 559-495-1620    Fax:  559-495-1027

Cubin, Barbara (R-WY) – Phone: 202-225-2311 Fax:  202-225-3057
Casper Office:  307-261-6595  Fax:  307-261-6597

DeFazio, Peter (D-OR) – Phone: 202-225-6416 Fax:  202-225-0032
Eugene Office:  541-465-6732  Fax:  541-465-6458

Drake, Thelma (R-VA)  Phone: 202-225-4215 Fax:  202-225-4218
Virginia Beach Office:  757-497-6859  Fax:  757-497-5474

Duncan Jr., John (R-TN) Phone: 202-225-5435 Fax:  202-225-6440
Knoxville Office:  865-523-3772  Fax:  865-544-0728

Flake, Jeff (R-AZ)  Phone: 202-225-2635 Fax:  202-226-4386
Mesa Office:  480-833-0092  Fax:  480-833-6314

Gallegly, Elton (R-CA) Phone: 202-225-5811  Fax:  202-225-1100
Thousand Oaks Office:  805-497-2224

Gibbons, Jim (R-NV)  Phone: 202-225-6155 Fax:  202-225-5679
Reno Office:  885-686-5760  Fax:  775-686-5711

Gilchrest, Wayne (R-MD)  Phone: 202-225-5311 Fax:  202-225-0254
Chestertown Office:  410-778-9407  Fax:  410-778-9560

Gohmert, Louie (R-TX) Phone: 202-225-3035  Fax:  202-226-1230

Grijalva, Raul (D-AZ) Phone: 202-225-2435 Fax:  202-225-1541
Tucson Office: 520-622-6788  Fax:  520-622-0198

Hayworth, J. D. (R-AZ)  Phone: 202-225-2190 Fax:  202-225-3263
Scottsdale Office:  480-926-4151 Fax:  480-926-3998

Herseth, Stephanie (D-SD)  Phone: 202-225-2801  	Fax:  202-225-5823
Sioux Falls Office:  605-367-8371	

Inslee, Jay (D-WA) Phone: 202-225-6311  Fax:  202-226-1606
Mountlake Terrace Office:  425-640-0233	Fax:  425-776-7168

Jindal, Bobby (R-LA)  Phone: 202-225-3015 Fax:  202-226-0386
Metairie Office:  504-837-1259	

Jones, Walter (R-NC)  Phone: 202-225-3415  Fax:  202-225-3286
Greensville Office:  252-931-1003  Fax:  225-931-1002

Kildee, Dale (D-MI)  Phone: 202-225-3611  	Fax:  202-225-6393
Flint Office:  810-239-1437 Fax:  810-239-1439

Kind, Ron (D-WI)  Phone: 202-225-5506  Fax:  202-225-5739
La Cross Office:  608-782-2558  Fax:  608-782-4588

Markey, Edward (D-MA)  Phone: 202-225-2836  Fax:  202-226-0092
Medford Office:  781-396-2900	

McMorris, Cathy (R-WA)  Phone: 202-225-2006  Fax:  202-225-3392
 Spokane Office:  509-353-2374  Fax:  509-353-2412

Melancon, Charles (D-LA) Phone: 202-225-4031 Fax:  202-226-3944
Gonzales Office:  225-621-8490  Fax:  225-621-8493

Miller, George (D-CA)  Phone: 202-225-2095  Fax:  202-225-5609
Concord Office:  925-602-1880  Fax:  925-674-0983

Musgrave, Marilyn (R-CO)  Phone: 202-225-4676  	Fax:  202-225-5870
 Loveland Office:  970-663-3536	

Napolitano, Flores, Grace (D-CA)  Phone: 202-225-5256 Fax:  202-225-0027
Santa Fe Springs Office: 562-801-2134	Fax:  562-949-9144

Ortiz, Solomon (D-TX)  Phone: 202-225-7742 Fax:  202-226-1134
Brownsville Office:  956-541-1242  Fax:  956-544-6915

Pallone Jr., Frank (D-NJ)  Phone: 202-225-4671 Fax:  202-225-9665
Long Branch Office: 732-571-1140  Fax:  732-870-3890

Pearce, Steve (R-NM)  Phone: 202-225-2365  Fax:  202-225-9599
 Roswell Office:  505-622-0055  Fax:  505-625-9608

Peterson, John (R-PA)  Phone: 202-225-5121  Fax:  202-225-5796
Titusville Office:  814-827-3985  Fax:  814-827-7307

Pombo, Richard (R-CA)  Phone: 202-225-1947 Fax:  202-226-0861
Stockton Office:  209-951-3091 Fax:  925-866-7064

Radanovich, George (R-CA) Phone: 202-225-4540  	Fax:  202-225-3402
Fresno Office:  559-449-2490 Fax:  559-449-2499

Rahall, Nick (D-WV) Phone: 202-225-3452  Fax:  202-225-9061
Beckley Office:  304-252-5000 Fax:  304-252-9803

Renzi, Rick (R-AZ)  Phone: 202-225-2315  	Fax:  202-226-9739
Show Low Office:  928-537-2800  Fax:  928-532-5088

Saxton, Jim (R-NJ) Phone: 202-225-4765  	Fax:  202-225-0778
Mt. Holly Office:  609-261-5800  Fax:  609-261-1275

Tancredo, Tom (R-CO)  Phone: 202-225-7882  Fax:  202-226-4623
Centennial/Englewood Office:  720-283-9772  Fax:  720-283-9776

Udall, Mark (D-CO)  Phone: 202-225-2161  	Fax:  202-226-7840
Westminster Office: 303-650-7820  Fax:  303-650-7827

Udall, Tom (D-NM)  Phone: 202-225-6190  	Fax:  202-226-1331
 Santa Fe Office: 505-984-8950                                                                

Walden, Greg (R-OR)  Phone: 202-225-6730  Fax:  202-225-5774
Medford Office:  541-776-4646  Fax:  541-779-0204

Young, Don (R-AK)  Phone: 202-225-5765  	Fax:  515-225-0425
Anchorage Office: 907-271-5978  Fax:  907-271-5950

Here is an example of reservation shopping:

People Against a Casino Town (PACT)	
P.O. Box 978, Florence, OR 97439


Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians

1996:  “Tribal officials deny they are currently looking at options to place a proposed Indian gaming center just outside Florence city limits.” (March 6, 1999, Siuslaw News, by Eric Fetters)

1/8/97:  Application for Fee?to?Trust Process ? Hatch Property - "At this time, the site is being acquired for historic and cultural purposes and we envision that the land will become an important destination for tribal members wishing to remember history and Indian existence.  The Hatch homestead still stands (sic) we believe that it will furnish a visitation opportunity for our members who have long lived in the area but had inadequate access to the cemetery and adjoining parcels." (1/8/97, Letter from Gregory A. Norton, Chairman of the Tribal Council, Confederated Tribes to Gary Varner, Bureau of Indian Affairs)

1997:  “In a letter to the governor and Lane County, from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Siletz Agency, it was stated that the land is to be used for historic and cultural purposes ... “Confederated Tribes Tribal Chairman Greg Norton said the land ... was a significant part of the Indian cultural history , and stressed it would be used for cultural and historic purposes.  He also said that no specific buildings have been planned for the site, and the land has not been identified for the purposes of a gaming casino or any other economic development.”  (Siuslaw News, by Cathy Layva)

1997: A draft of a board order from Lane County Counsel Teresa Wilson states that the county will support the land acquisition for “cultural and historic purposes.”  However, because of inadequate information from the tribes, the proposed board order states, the county will not support economic development on the land. ... the governor’s office confirmed that there would be a separate process if the land were to be used for a gaming casino.  (Siuslaw News, by Craig Furuya)

1998: “At no time relevant to the fee-to-trust conversion did the Confederated Tribes have any plans to introduce gaming under IGRA to the Hatch Tract.”  (March 23, 1998, Letter from Dennis Whittlesey, attorney for the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians, to Stan Speaks, Bureau of Indian Affairs Portland Director, Exhibit No. COOS 00559)

2003: “In the State’s opening memorandum (at 7), we noted that the Tribes represented, in support of their application to have the Hatch Tract taken into trust, that “at no time relevant to the trust acquisition did the Tribes have any plans to introduce gaming under IGRA on the Hatch Tract. ... The Tribes’ website, however, now acknowledges that “the tribes have always intended to pursue gaming on this tract of land that borders the town of Florence, Oregon.”  (April 1, 2003 State of Oregon Response in U.S. District Court Case No. 02-6104-TC, State of Oregon v. Norton)

2003: “We were lied to.  In a meeting with the Tribal leaders when they were interested in adding this land to their tribal status they told me to my face that the intent of the purchase was NOT to put a casino on this land.  I asked them specifically because I led the fight to keep this casino out of Springfield. They lied. You have my permission to give this statement to anyone you want including the Tribe.” (Lane County Commissioner Bill Dwyer, correspondence, July 25, 2003)

Current situation:  As of April 2006, due in part to locally supported lawsuits, the casino in Florence is still located in a temporary tent.  Construction has just begun 
on a much larger casino complex to include hotel, restaurants, etc.  The local group (PACT) opposing the casino renewed their legal battle in Oregon state courts last week, and expects another six months to pass before they will know the outcome of that effort.  In the meantime, as one local put it, "the casino is busily buying up local politicians and community leaders with promises of 'casino largess'".  

They've put their casino logo on the backs of a children's baseball team, and obtained promises from the city council to get special 'exceptions' to state laws in order to provide city sewer services to the casino and surrounding tribal properties.  The casino tribe has adopted 'laws' and 'civil fines' which they claim apply to any non-Indian which comes into their casino, actions which are explicitly prohibited by the Federal Code which originally recognized the tribe.   

The 90-acre piece of land which now holds the casino, within 100 feet of a 
Florence family neighborhood, was fraudulently put into trust with repeated 
promises of "no intention of building a casino" on the land.  The casino 
tribe is quietly working to put even more land into trust, likely including 
land which lies within city limits and over 100 acres of land partially 
surrounding a local public lake. Unfortunately, public access to this kind 
of information is not encouraged.

mailto:debinflorence@presys.com or info@pactoregon.org

More from Florence, Oregon.

Wondering if casinos bring crime to communities?

2003 - 80 acres of open dune and forested land in Florence, Oregon:
Total arrests:  NONE
Medical assists:  NONE
Drug incidents: NONE
Motor vehicle collisions: NONE

2005 - new tent casino on same property generated:
Total arrests:  63
("majority being drug related and occurring at the casino in Florence")
Medical assists:  67
Drug incidents: 52
Motor vehicle collisions: 21

Still wondering?

(Note: Florence population:  about 7,500)

Debby Todd
(Info source: tribal web site)


Pombo Introduces Bill To End Off-Reservation Indian Gaming

  For Immediate Release
House Resources Committee
  March 8, 2006
  Contact: Brian Kennedy or Jennifer Zuccarelli (202) 226-9019

  Pombo Introduces Bill to End
  Off-Reservation Indian Gaming

  Washington, DC- After more than a year of Congressional hearings and public input, House Resources Committee Chairman Richard W. Pombo (R-CA) officially introduced legislation to stop the spread of off-reservation Indian gaming yesterday evening.  See below to read the bill, H.R. 4893.

  Off-reservation gaming is the practice of exploiting a loophole in the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA).  Some tribes attempt to acquire lands outside the borders of their reservation to establish a casino, typically close to large urban areas or tourist destinations. H.R. 4893 amends Section 20 of IGRA, to close this loophole and give local communities control over new casino proposals from newly-recognized or landless tribes. 

  "Off-reservation gaming is a nationwide concern and I knew we had many different opinions and concerns to keep in mind," said Pombo "By working openly with Indian Country and the American public over the last year, I believe I have crafted the strongest bill possible.  This will put local communities in control and encourage economic opportunities for tribes at the same time."

  Pombo held three hearings on off-reservation gaming last year, including one field hearing in California where more than 10 local officials and tribal leaders testified on the effects of off-reservation gaming.  The state ranks at the top of the nation's list with as many as 40 proposals to establish off-reservation casinos.

  The Chairman circulated for the public two discussion drafts of his bill last year. The Resources Committee will hold a hearing in the near future to review the bill.
Chairman Pombo's Off-Reservation Gaming bill will:

-----1.  Completely repeal the so-called 'two part determination' in Section 20 of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act ("IGRA"), the part of IGRA that has authorized 'reservation shopping'.  This means that under no circumstances can a tribe that already has land into trust that is eligible for gaming acquire any more land not contiguous to the reservation and use it for gaming, without exception.  This puts a permanent end to 'reservation shopping' once and for all.

-----2.  Give local communities and state officials a seat at the table to decide whether or not a casino proposed by a new or landless tribe should open in their town or city. 

-----a.  The tribe and local community must enter into a memorandum of understanding under which the tribe must pay the community for mitigation of direct effects of the casino on infrastructure and services such as transportation, public safety, and other costs.

-----b.  The tribe must pay for an advisory referendum in the local county or parish that currently holds jurisdiction over the land on whether they would like to have a casino or not.  The result of this referendum would then be forwarded to the Department of Interior, along with the completed Environmental Impact Statement, prior to Department review and determination of whether or not the land should be taken into trust.

-----c.  The Secretary of Interior must certify that the facility would not be detrimental to the surrounding community or nearby Indian tribes.

-----d.  The Secretary must certify that the facility is in the best interest of the surrounding community.

-----e.  The Governor of the State must concur with the Secretary's findings.

-----f.  The State legislature must concur with the Secretary's findings.

-----g.  Nearby Indian tribes must concur with the Secretary's findings.

-----h.  Only after having cleared all of these hurdles will land be placed into trust for a new or landless tribe that wants a casino.

-----i.  A tribe may only propose to locate its facility on lands where the tribe has its primary historic, geographical, social and temporal nexus with the lands.

-----3.  Ban any attempts to establish off-reservation casinos outside of the tribe's current U.S. state.

-----4.  Allow for the creation of 'Indian Gaming Zones', where one tribe can host a gaming facility for another tribe on already existing reservation land where gaming is allowed.


Click here for a copy of the bill, HR 4893.


or go to www.landrights.org

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