SACRAMENTO – Amador County's lawsuit to stop the lone Band of Miwok Indians from
building a $250 million hotel and casino complex was thrown out last Thursday by
a U.S. District Judge.
The Miwok plan to build their casino in the town of Plymouth, California, about
15 miles up Highway 49 from the Jackson Rancheria Casino. The small tribe of 535
members has petitioned the US. Department of the Interior to place 228 acres in
and around Plymouth into trust for the tribe which is a prerequisite for
building their casino.
U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton issued his order barring the suit as
premature by the federal Administrative Procedures Act. The county can sue if
the U.S. Department of Interior grants the Ione Band of Miwok Indians' request
to take their land into federal trust.
The federal trust decision is a "final agency action," as defined by the
Administrative Procedures Act. If the trust is approved, a federal court can
review the tribe's plan and the federal process.
In 2006 the Interior Department determined if the land is taken into trust it
will qualify as Indian lands on which gambling can be established.
In 2005 the Miwok requested that the land be taken into trust, but their request
is still pending.
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