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Governor opposes Soboba annexation

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October 11, 2009

SAN JACINTO, CA - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has joined the opposition to the proposed annexation of 54 acres to the Soboba Indian Reservation for construction of casino, hotel, and retail complex.

Five U.S. senators also oppose the project. They include California's senators, Barbara Boxer and Diane Feinstein, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Senator John Ensign of Nevada and Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona.
They cite revenue loss to local jurisdictions and land-use policies near residential areas.

In a letter to the Bureau of Indian Affairs the California governor said he opposes converting urbanized land to casino use and also the environmental impact statement fails to address major issues. For example the environmental study does not address a violation of the joint agency agreement under which the tribe will withdraw more water from the San Jacinto aquifer than it is entitled to.

The governor recommends the federal government do more work and evaluation on the environmental statement before taking the land into trust for the tribe.

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