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From the Associated Press by Sundin Thanawala and reprinted by the Arizona Republic on October 12, 2014. This article was too relevant to ignore and so it is offered below with a few interspersed comments: The article, California tribe’s casino plan to go before voters, is from San Francisco.

 “A Native American tribe’s plan for a Las Vegas-style casino in Central Valley (make that Glendale) nearly 40 miles (change that to 100 miles) from its reservation has drawn opposition from other casino-owning tribes in the state.

“The voters now will weigh in on whether the North Fork Rancheria Band of Mono Indians (insert Tohono O’odham) are ‘reservation shopping,’ as their critics contend, or taking land that was part of their historical territory, as the tribes maintains.

“A referendum on the November ballot asks voters to approve or reject a deal signed by the governor and passed by the state Legislature that would allow the North Fork Rancheria to build a casino with up to 2,000 slot machines ( change to nearly 1,100 slot machines), on a 305-acre (132 acres) plot of land along a major highway (the Loop 101 Freeway) about 30 miles (5 miles) northwest of Fresno (Phoenix).

“With a yes vote, the project would clear its last major hurdle to entering the state’s Indian gambling market, where 58 tribes (21 tribes) are currently running 59 (28) casinos, according to the Legislative Analyst’s Office.

“Critics of the proposal say the tribes is trying to get closer to an urban market that can bring in more gamblers.”

“ ‘This move by North Fork, if it goes forward, will incentivize tribes in rural areas to move to more-lucrative locations,’ said Cheryl Schmit, director of the group Stand Up For California.

“Representatives of the 2,000-member North Fork tribe counter that their existing land is for housing and does not allow gambling and that they went through a lengthy vetting process to get approval for the new land.

“ ‘We’re getting back to the historical land that serves as a reservation for our tribes in the 1850’s,’ said Charles Banks-Altekruse, a spokesman for the tribe, which is being supported by Las Vegas-based Station Casinos.

“Additionally, tribal officials say, the project would create more than 4,500 (change to 6,000) jobs and pump tens of millions of dollars into the local economy.

“Opposition to North Fork’s proposal is coming from other casino-owning tribes, including Table Mountain Rancheria (Gila River Indian Community and the Salt River-Pima-Maricopa Indian Community) whose casino is about 25 miles (20 miles) from the proposed site of the North Fork facility (Tohono O’odham’s Glendale site).

“The campaign against the project is also being funded by New York-based Brigade Capital Management, an investment firm that backs the Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino, another Indian casino near the site of the proposed North Fork casino.

“Under the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, tribes can build casinos on reservations that existed before Oct. 17, 1988, but not on lands taken into trust after that date (except in Arizona). The law allows the Interior secretary to make an exception in cases where the off-reservations acquisition is in the tribe’s best interest (not proven for Tohono O’odham) and does not hurt the surrounding community (which it will).”

These situations are eerily similar with one major exception. The referendum was not blocked in California and so the voters will have the final say. Not so in Glendale. Glendale has blocked the referendum petitions and the matter is now a court case and a judge will decide whether Glendale voters can determine their own fate.

© Joyce Clark,

2014 FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

On August 14, 2014 two referendum petition packets were taken out for the purpose of obtaining Glendale residents’ signatures. If successful, the two actions taken by the Glendale City Council at its meeting on August 12, 2014 will be decided in an election by the people…as it should be. Glendale’s City Attorney, Michael Bailey, said publicly that neither council vote is referable. In other words, no one can take out a petition to try to overturn the council votes. The Tribal attorneys believe it is referable. When the signed petitions are turned in expect Glendale to reject them. Expect a law suit resulting in yet another judicial decision about Glendale’s ultimate fate.

Here is the text of the first referendum action. It seeks to overturn the council’s vote welcoming a reservation and casino within Glendale: “The Tohono O’Odham casino, targeted for a Glendale neighborhood near homes, schools, daycares and houses of worship, will destroy neighborhoods and create severe budget stress for the nearly bankrupt City, overburdening Glendale’s public safety, street and infrastructure. This petition seeks to refer the August 12, 2014 Glendale City Council vote to agree to the creation of a 121-acre Indian reservation at 91st and Northern avenues. A “no” vote on this referral will overturn the Council’s decision to support a reservation and a casino and respect the NO casino promise, protecting City residents and the Glendale’s budget and core services.”

The second referendum petition seeks to overturn the council approved agreement between the City of Glendale and the Tohono O’odham: “The Tohono O’Odham casino, targeted for a Glendale neighborhood near homes, schools, daycares and house of worship, will destroy neighborhoods and create severe budget stress for the nearly bankrupt City, overburdening Glendale’s public safety, streets and infrastructure. This petition seeks to refer the August 12, 2014 Glendale City Council vote to sign a settlement agreement with the Tohono O’odham Nation in support of the Tribe’s neighborhood casino. A “no” vote on this referral will overturn the Council’s pro-casino decision and respect the NO casino promise, protecting City residents and the Glendale’s budget and core services.”

The pro casino people have already begun their campaign of ridicule and denigration of the referendum petition effort saying, “it’s all about money…the other Tribes do not want the competition of another casino.” Of course it’s about the money. Everyone has their hand in the money pot…the Tohono O’odham, the City of Glendale and the other Tribes.

To accept that their referendum effort is ONLY about “the money” is simplistic, self-serving and makes for great PR but misses the mark. There is a greater imperative for the Gila River Indian Community, the Salt River-Pima-Maricopa Indian Community and all of the Tribes across the state supporting efforts of these two lead Tribes.

As President of the Salt River-Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, Diane Enos, said, “They looked us in the face and lied.”  She is referring to the Tohono O’odham, a member of the coalition of Tribes that negotiated the gaming compact with the state. The TO actively and publicly worked to get voters of the state to approve the compact while deliberately keeping from its Sister Tribes its ultimate plan to put a casino in the Phoenix Metro Area. In fact, it contributed a great deal of money to publicize and to advance the compact with the state’s voters.

The Tohono O’odham lied to its Sister Tribes. It betrayed them. Why? For the money. The Tohono O’odham lied to the State and to every voter who approved the gaming compact. Why? For the money. But somehow for the pro casino supporters that’s supposed to be OK?

Why is the TO’s action simply ignored by the pro casino supporters? For the money.  For all of the Tribes throughout Arizona it is a matter of honor, respect and trust…all of which the TO deliberately chose to betray. That is the real reason the Tribes are driven to oppose the Tohono O’odham’s plans.

If an opportunity to vote on the Tohono O’odham’s casino plans do make it to a Glendale ballot that is what the voters of Glendale should remember. “They looked us in the face and lied.”

© Joyce Clark, 2014

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

One of my many followers sent me this link:  http://www.macrumors.com/2014/06/06/apple-others-2-million-each-super-bowl-50/.  Apple, along with other Bay area tech companies, Intel, Yahoo and Google, has given their Super Bowl Host Committee $2 million in cash and other unspecified services to offset San Francisco Bay area taxpayer costs of hosting Super Bowl 50.

Hey Apple…could you spare a little more and gift Glendale $2 million in cash to offset the taxpayer costs of hosting our 2015 Super Bowl?

The Arizona Free Enterprise Club visited Glendale City Hall today, June 6, 2014 and made a beeline for the City Clerk’s office. What for, you say? It seems they have taken out a referendum packet on the issue of council’s decision to make the temporary sales tax increase permanent. Don’t be surprised if Glendale’s voters get to weigh in on the issue this fall.

© Joyce Clark, 2014

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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