Tribes In Oklahoma Take Governor To Court

Tribes In Oklahoma Take Governor To Court

The feud between the tribes and Oklahoma Governor doesn’t seem to be coming to an end. Now three of the biggest tribes in Oklahoma have approached the court against the state governor.

The Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Choctaw nations have filed a lawsuit against the state governor and have sought the court to intervene to help them settle an ongoing dispute over tribal casinos in the state.

The tribes have knocked at the court asking it to decide if the compact with the state to allow gambling exclusively at tribal casinos gets renewed automatically on Jan-1 for another term of 15 years. The tribes have filed a lawsuit claiming they meet all necessary conditions to have their licenses renewed.

“For some time, we have tried to establish meaningful intergovernmental engagement regarding our gaming compacts, but you have continued to reject our compacts’ plain terms,” Cherokee Nation Chief Chuck Hoskin, Chickasaw Nation Gov.

In a joint letter to the state governor, Bill Anoatubby and Choctaw Nation Chief Gary Batton wrote: “Recently, you have gone further, stating allegations against us and threats to our operations.”

The dispute is all about the license renewal. While the state governor is firm on his decision that the compact expires on Jan 1 which would render tribal casinos illegal in the state, the tribes demand otherwise.

The state Governor has said that he would renegotiate the terms. However, the offers made by the governor have been rejected by the tribes and attempts to reach a settlement have failed.

Governor Stitt, earlier in the week, on Tuesday also announced that two of the 39 federally recognized tribes in the state – the Kialegee Tribal Town and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians have consented to an eight-month extension of the contract and not 15 years.

“The state of Oklahoma offered an extension, with no strings attached, to all tribes that operate casinos in the state, and my door continues to be open for more tribes to join who are worried about impending uncertainty,” the governor said in a statement.

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