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OKLAHOMA

Posted: Jan 12, 2020 4:17 PMUpdated: Jan 12, 2020 4:18 PM

Tribes to Gov Stitt: Check's in the Mail

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Tom Davis

At the quarterly meeting of the Inter-Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes Friday at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa, officials with the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Muscogee (Creek), Choctaw and Seminole nations reiterated their stance that Class III gaming compacts automatically renewed on Jan. 1.

“One thing is clear: the Indian nations of this state meet our obligations, however we need to do that,” Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said. “We’re going to send a check like we always would because we’re required to do that. It’s the law. We’ll wait and see what the state of Oklahoma does and go from there, but we are good faith partners. That won’t change, no matter what he (Gov. Kevin Stitt) does with the check.”
 
Hoskin spoke to KWON AM 1400 and FM 93.3 exclusively Friday, December 27, about the impasse between all the Oklahoma tribes and Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt regarding the dispute over whether the 15-year gaming compact between them should renew or expire.
 

According to Chief Hoskin, ”We’ve had that compact for 15 years—it’s been a win-win. The proposition right now—the only person I can tell that thinks it expired or expires, rather, at the end of the year is the Governor of Oklahoma.” He adds, “All of the tribal leaders are behind the idea that it is renewed.”

 

From Governor Stitt’s website:

Governor Kevin Stitt on December 19, 2019, issued to all tribes with a gaming compact the State’s offer to extend current tribal gaming compacts by eight months:

“The State of Oklahoma is offering an extension to all current gaming compacts between tribes and the State in order to allow us the necessary time to negotiate,” said Gov. Stitt in a letter to tribes. “An extension will also alleviate any questions or concerns that lenders, employees, entertainers, vendors, and patrons have concerning whether the Class III gaming activities at the casinos are legal as of January 1, 2020.” 

A full copy of the letter can be found here.

That document extends the gaming compacts’ Jan. 1, 2020 date, referenced in Part 15B, to August 31, 2020. The extension makes no further amendments to Part 15B and includes clear language that allows both parties to maintain their legal positions, stating, “Whereas, the Tribe and the State desire to preserve their respective legal arguments regarding that disagreement.”  

A full copy of the extension can be found here.

 


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