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St. Regis Mohawk Tribe revisit plan for Catskills casino

June 21, 2009

It appears the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe has joined their former partner Empire Resorts to revive plans for a casino resort in the Catskills.

Empire President Joseph Bernstein said last week the two parties are working together again and hope the Obama administration will approve the casino.

In January 2008 the federal government rejected the tribe's plan to build a $600 million casino resort in the Catskills. The decision was based on a new Department of the Interior policy that requires new casinos to be within driving distance of a reservation. The distance from the Akwesasne Mohawk reservation near Massena is 350 miles and too far for approval.

In recent months tribes across our country have asked the Obama administration to remove the distance policy and reverse the decisions made in the last year of the Bush administration. There is hope a decision will come soon.

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