08/5/16

Schaghticoke Tribal Nation Drops Lawsuit But Still Pushes For Casino

The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation is dropping a short-lived lawsuit that challenged the bidding process for a new casino in Connecticut. But Chief Richard Velky hasn’t given up hope. He said the tribe will focus its efforts on the 2017 legislative session, when lawmakers will consider whether to move forward with the casino.

Continue Reading: http://www.indianz.com/IndianGaming/2016/08/05/schaghticoke-tribal-nation-dro.asp

07/13/16

WSHU: Schaghticoke Continues Fight For Federal Recognition — And Its Benefits

“Connecticut has announced its new Keno game, introduced in April, brought in $12 million in its first two months. That’s nearly twice what the state had projected.

Part of the proceeds are going to the state’s two federally recognized American Indian tribes, the Mashantucket and the Mohegan. But there are three other state-recognized Indian tribes in Connecticut. They are not getting any of the proceeds because only the two federally recognized tribes have a gaming compact with the state”

WSHU Senior Political Reporter Ebong Udoma and Reporter Davis Dunavin have been covering this development and spoke about it with Morning Edition Host Tom Kuser.

Listen to full interview here: http://wshu.org/post/schaghticoke-continues-fight-federal-recognition-and-its-benefits

 

03/8/16

Chief Of Schaghticoke Tribal Nation Testifies At Public Safety Committee Public Hearing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Chief Richard Velky
March 8, 2016

Email: chiefvelkystn@aol.com

CHIEF OF SCHAGHTICOKE TRIBAL NATION TESTIFIES AT
PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE PUBLIC HEARING
Urges Legislators to Amend SB 357 to Allow All State Recognized Tribes the
Opportunity to Conduct Tribal Bingo Operations

Kent, Connecticut — Today, the Chief of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation (STN), Richard Velky, testified before the Connecticut General Assembly’s Public Safety Committee, urging legislators to amend Senate Bill 357 (An Act Concerning Gaming). During his testimony, Chief Velky asked the committee to “keep focused” on the bill’s stated purpose, which is to amend and correct the State’s bingo laws.

“…the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation is a Connecticut recognized tribe, just like the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe. And as many of you know, we have been pursuing an opportunity to create our own gaming entity,” Velky remarked. “We therefore ask the Committee to amend S.B. 357 to give the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation…and all state-recognized tribes…an opportunity to conduct tribal bingo operations…and ensure STN is given equal consideration for any future commercial casino in Connecticut.”

“To us, tribal gaming is about creating an economic opportunity for an impoverished people and if we were permitted to pursue gaming, we would use that opportunity to create jobs for us and for the surrounding communities,” added Velky.

The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation is one of the oldest state-recognized tribes in the U.S., formally recognized by the Colony of Connecticut in 1736.

Read Chief Velky’s full testimony here.

07/12/14

Schaghticoke Tribal Nation opposes state veto on recognition

Via Indianz.com –

. . . The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation doesn’t think the state of Connecticut should be able to veto its federal recognition petition.
The Bureau of Indian Affairs has proposed a rule that would allow the tribe to resubmit its petition. But all interested parties must agree, something that won’t happen in Connecticut.

“Even though the state had the responsibility of our tribes for centuries, they still are now considered a third party that can stop a tribe from gaining its federal recognition,” Chief Richard Velky told Free Speech Press News. “The same people — the same people — that was there to protect us are now there to hurt us.” . . .

Read more: http://indianz.com/News/2014/014026.asp

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07/3/14

Op-Ed: Six things you did not know about the federal acknowledgment of Indian tribes

By Ruth Garby Torres

. . . #2 – Contrary to what you may hear from public officials in Connecticut, there will still be many obstacles for tribes petitioning under the proposed changes to the acknowledgment process and beyond that process.

Back in 2005 when many of these same public officials were running around with their hair on fire because the Schaghticokes and Eastern Pequots were federally recognized, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the City of Sherrill vs. Oneida Indian Tribe case.

To be clear, I am not a lawyer, legal scholar or expert but anyone can find explanations of this case in plain English. In short, the Oneidas legally purchased private properties in New York, which the City of Sherrill wanted to tax. The court held that, “Given the longstanding, distinctly non-Indian character of central New York and its inhabitants, the regulatory authority over the area constantly exercised by the State and its counties and towns for 200 years, and the Oneidas’ long delay in seeking judicial relief against parties other than the United States, standards of federal Indian law and federal equity practice preclude the Tribe from unilaterally reviving its ancient sovereignty, in whole or in part, over the parcels at issue.” . . .

Read more: http://ctmirror.org/op-ed-six-things-you-did-not-know-about-the-federal-acknowledgment-of-indian-tribes/
 

 

06/29/14

Editorial: Connecticut tribes deserve to be respected in state

From Indianz.com –

Connecticut newspaper says tribes deserve respect even if they are not recognized by the federal government:

The proposed rules were “significantly” changed, U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy told a group of business leaders in Danbury Wednesday, and now are expected to effectively block attempts by the Schaghticokes in Kent to win federal recognition.
The revisions, announced by the BIA last Thursday, specify that for any petition to move forward it would need consent by all parties who were involved in earlier unsuccessful attempts.

Given that Connecticut, the state’s attorney general and the town of Kent all vigorously objected to federal recognition for the Schaghticokes — a designation approved in 2004 and then overturned in 2008 — any new effort would go nowhere.

Good news for the state. Not such good news for the Native Americans, who obtained their reservation by the General Assembly of the Colony of Connecticut in 1736. The original 2,500-acre reservation, one of the oldest in the country, was pared down in the 1800s and early 1900s to the present day steep, rocky 400 acres in Kent…

Get the Story:
Editorial: Still struggling with the Native American identity (The Danbury News-Times 5/29)