HARTFORD — The chief of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation said Monday that his state-recognized Indian tribe is working with gambling giant MGM Resorts to fight the state’s plan for opening a third casino in Connecticut.
By Russell Blair
…”Without any competitive bidding or gaming study, Connecticut shut out [the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation] and awarded to one pair of Native American tribes the exclusive ability to develop a highly-valuable commercial enterprise,” Chief Richard L. Velky said in a statement. “Under the equal protection clauses of both the federal and state constitutions, [the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation] should have the same right to pursue this economic opportunity as anyone else.”
Velky said the lawsuit will be filed Monday…
From the Hartford Courant:
“The obvious result of denying or rescinding our registration as a ‘tribal business entity’ would be to prevent us from issuing a request for proposals to municipalities regarding the establishment of a possible casino gaming facility in a host community,” Velky said in a statement. “We view this as an unconstitutional act on the part of the Secretary of the State’s office.”
From Gregory B. Hladky in the Hartford Courant:
…Richard Velky, chief of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation, issued a statement saying the new rules approved by the Bureau of Indian Affairs “betrays the trust” between the federal government and the tribe.
“The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation will not be deterred by the grave omissions and errors” in the new federal rules announced Monday, Velky said…
By Gale Courey Toensing
It’s the oldest continuously published newspaper in the United States. George Washington placed an ad in it to lease part of his Mount Vernon land. Thomas Jefferson sued it for libel and lost. Mark Twain tried to buy stock in it, but was rejected. It’s Connecticut’s largest daily newspaper. And now it’s joined Sen. Richard Blumenthal and other elected officials in a racist anti-Indian campaign against reforming the federal recognition process – all in an effort to stop additional Connecticut tribes from being acknowledged and opening casinos.
The Hartford Courant, which began as a weekly in 1764, published an editorial August 8 warning against a draft proposal of changes to the Interior Department’s federal acknowledgment process that Interior Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn released June 21.
Blumenthal is leading the campaign in opposition to the reform effort in order to stop the Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation (EPTN) and the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation (STN) from possibly regaining the federal acknowledgments they received in 2002 and 2004, respectively. The acknowledgments were overturned in 2005 after Blumenthal led a relentless and orchestrated campaign of opposition and political pressure involving local and state elected officials and an anti-Indian sovereignty group and its powerful White house-connected lobbyist, Barbour Griffith & Rogers (BGR). An Indian Country Today Media Network editorial, “A Lack of Interior Fortitude,” describes “the force of outside pressure” and its impact across the country…