indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
The University of Tulsa College of Law - Master's in Indian Law
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Judge dismisses bid to block Alabama tribe from Class III
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Filed Under: Law

A federal judge on Monday refused to allow the state of Alabama to challenge a long-disputed provision of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

Alabama Attorney General Troy King, a Republican, sued the Interior Department in April in hopes of blocking the Poarch Band of Creek Indians from engaging in Class III gaming. IGRA regulations that allow the federal government to step in when a state refuses to negotiate a compact are unconstitutional, he contends.

In Texas, the state was able to stop the Kickapoo Tribe from Class III gaming even before Interior reached a decision on the matter. King hoped to do the same in Alabama, where officials have balked at coming to the table with the Poarch Band for nearly two decades.

But Judge William Steele said King filed the suit too early. Without a "final agency action" from Interior, the court doesn't have anything to review, the 17-page decision stated.

"The issues of whether the [IGRA] regulations exceed statutory authority or represent an unconstitutional delegation of legislative authority to the executive are presumably legal ones, but to establish them the state invokes matters that can be fully considered only on a factual record developed in the underlying administrative proceedings," Steele wrote in dismissing the case.

Steele left the door open for King to file another lawsuit if Interior takes action on behalf of the tribe. The state could also appeal, a route that led to victory in Texas after a lower court judge dismissed that case.

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals invalidated the IGRA regulations in a lengthy August 2007 decision. The court said Interior couldn't cut Texas out of the process because that would go against IGRA, which gives states a role in Class III gaming on reservations.

The Kickapoo Tribe asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the decision. But the Department of Justice, even though it believed the 5th Circuit "erred" by invalidating the regulations, opposed review of the case.

As for the Poarch Band, it's not clear when Interior would issue regulations for the tribe, whose leaders intervened in King's lawsuit. The tribe's request for Class III gaming has been pending since March 2006.

With the change in administration quickly approaching, it's unlikely a decision will be made soon or even after president-elect Barack Obama is inaugurated in January 2009. Poarch Creek officials were among the hundreds of tribal leaders who endorsed the Democratic candidate.

The tribe has always been willing to negotiate a compact but state governors have consistently refused. The tribe is limited to Class II games like bingo and pull-tabs, along with electronic versions of those games.

Despite the restrictions, the tribe has built a strong economy around its gaming enterprise. A $260 million casino resort, including a 232-room hotel, makes its debut in January. The tribe recently doubled the size of another casino.

Court Decision:
Alabama v. US (November 24, 2008)

Related Stories:
NIGC chairman stresses independence to Obama team (11/19)
Indian gaming issues up for Obama's review (11/18)
Poarch Band busy expanding casino operation (10/13)
Poarch Creek casino expected to lead growth in region (10/7)
Supreme Court refuses to hear Kickapoo gaming case (10/6)
NIGC finally rules on Poarch Creek casino site (5/29)
Bush administration opposes review of IGRA case (5/13)
Alabama sues to block Poarch Creek Class III gaming (4/9)



Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
First Lady Michelle Obama shares story of hope with Indian school (5/26)
Remarks by First Lady Michelle Obama at Santa Fe Indian School (5/26)
Gary Davis of NCAIED joins Small Business Administration council (5/26)
Arne Vainio: A mother's gift carried me through many life journeys (5/26)
Native Sun News: Tribes score big in fights against energy projects (5/26)
Lakota Country Times: Education Secretary hears from Pine Ridge (5/26)
Ivan Star Comes Out: Ending Whiteclay beer sales starts at home (5/26)
Vi Waln: Rosebud Sioux youth lead efforts to bring relatives home (5/26)
Gyasi Ross: Drug epidemic sweeping through Native communities (5/26)
Jacqueline Keeler: Shameful and skewed poll on racist NFL name (5/26)
Interview with Melvin Monette about Cobell scholarship program (5/26)
Auction house in France won't stop sale of sacred tribal property (5/26)
United Keetoowah Band installs new leader after impeachment (5/26)
Kewa Pueblo builds new community around historic trading post (5/26)
Eastern Cherokee elder translates 'Charlotte's Web' into Tsalagi (5/26)
Puyallup Tribe works to keep language alive for new generations (5/26)
Iowa Tribe offers free play on poker website ahead of full launch (5/26)
Alabama-Coushatta Tribe offers gaming options closer to home (5/26)
Kaw Nation receives national award for tribal gaming initiatives (5/26)
Indian Health Service reform efforts gaining steam on Capitol Hill (5/25)
Indian Health Service announces more hires at troubled hospital (5/25)
Keepseagle attorneys open application process for $38M in grants (5/25)
Three tribes enter cooperative agreements for buy-back program (5/25)
New leader selected for HUD's Office of Native American Programs (5/25)
Indian relay racers gear up for event hosted by Muckleshoot Tribe (5/25)
Cronkite News: Tribes seek return of property up for sale in France (5/25)
Native Sun News: Anti-suicide effort incorporates tribal traditions (5/25)
Lakota Country Times: Pine Ridge youth showcase film projects (5/25)
Mark Trahant: Native vote victory for Tawna Sanchez in Oregon (5/25)
Brandon Ecoffey: Lakota people come together in times of need (5/25)
Editorial: Tribes must come up with plan for return of Black Hills (5/25)
John McCoy: Disenrollment and blood quantum are not our way (5/25)
Adrian Jawort: Addressing race relations and healing in Montana (5/25)
Fort Peck Tribes oppose new directive on transgender students (5/25)
Leader of United Keetoowah Band ousted through impeachment (5/25)
Agua Caliente Band launches software development company (5/25)
Sen. Barrasso to chair platform committee for GOP convention (5/25)
Cowlitz Tribe welcomes discussions with opponent over casino (5/25)
Little Traverse Bay Bands open doors to Class II gaming facility (5/25)
Tuolumne Band celebrates 15th birthday with casino expansion (5/25)
Former Winnebago Tribe casino employee denies theft charge (5/25)
Proposed rule brings LGBT equality to tribal housing programs (5/24)
Chairman of Quapaw Tribe endorses Democrat Hillary Clinton (5/24)
Appropriations bill blocks new federal recognition regulation (5/24)
Native American Children's Safety Act clears final Hill hurdle (5/24)
9th Circuit won't rehear Tohono O'odham Nation gaming case (5/24)
Lakota Country Times: Army promises return of tribal children (5/24)
Native Sun News: New business sprouts up at Wounded Knee (5/24)
Mark Trahant: Tulalip citizen lands role in Democratic platform (5/24)
Brandon Ecoffey: Pine Ridge unites for search of missing men (5/24)
Men who went missing found dead on Pine Ridge Reservation (5/24)
Billy Mills: Flawed poll can't justify use of team's racist mascot (5/24)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.