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Kansas attorney general questions Quapaw Tribe's gaming plans

Filed Under: NIGC | Openings and Closings
More on: igra, kansas, land-into-trust, missouri, oklahoma, quapaw, section 20

The Downstream Casino Resort. Photo from Facebook

The Kansas Attorney General's Office doesn't believe the Quapaw Tribe can use its former reservation for gaming.

The tribe acquired land within the "Quapaw Strip" and it was placed in trust in 2012. Normally, land acquired after 1988 isn't eligible for gaming under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

However, the National Indian Gaming Commission has determined that the tribe qualifies for an exception in Section 20 of the law. The Quapaw Strip was the tribe's "last recognized reservation" outside of Oklahoma, according to an Indian land opinion that says the land can be used for gaming.

But the attorney general told the NIGC in a 2013 letter that the tribe's land-into-trust application stated that the property wasn't going to be used for gaming. The state also claims the tribe can't be based in Kansas and Oklahoma at the same time.

Artist's rendering shows the planned expansion at the Downstream Casino Resort. Image from Quapaw Tribe

The tribe plans to use the Kansas land for a $15 million expansion of the Downstream Casino Resort. The facility is located in three states -- Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri but gaming is currently restricted to the Oklahoma portion.

The tribe plans to offer Class III games on the Kansas portion so it will need a Class III gaming compact with the state. "There's no reason not to expect that I can't get a compact," Chairman John Berrey told KOAM-TV.

Get the Story:
Attorney General's Office offers opinion on casino expansion (KOAM 12/9)
Government regulation could put hurdle in front of Downstream's planned expansion into SE KS (KOAM 12/5)
Federal government allows Quapaw Tribe to offer gaming in Cherokee County (The Miami News-Record 12/5)
Quapaw Tribe Says Feds OK Downstream Casino Expansion Into Kansas (News on 6 12/5)
$15 Million Dollar Expansion Project at Downstream Casino (KOLR10 News 12/6)

Related Stories:
Quapaw Tribe to expand gaming facility into ancestral territory (12/5)

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