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Tigua Tribe hopes to reopen Speaking Rock Casino

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December 31, 2008

AUSTIN - The Tigua tribe hope Texas lawmakers will pass legislation next year that will allow them to reopen their Speaking Rock Casino. The tribe's lieutenant governor, Carlos Hisa said, "We're always hoping for the best. We're going to try."

Speaking Rock was closed in 2002 by then Attorney General John Cornyn, who successfully sued the tribe for violating Texas anti-gambling laws. Prior to that the casino operated for nine years, producing $60 million annually for housing, health care and education for their 1,600 tribal members.

Two years ago Rep. Norma Chávez, D-El Paso, proposed legislation to reopen the casino and her bill came within one vote of passing. For the next legislative session, Chávez says she will reintroduce her bill with a new strategy to win a majority vote.

"We're not arrogantly optimistic at all," she said. "We know there are obstacles, but we do feel that we want to move on the momentum of last year's vote."

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