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Archive for Friday, October 11, 2002

Moore offers bill to allow casino

October 11, 2002

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— A measure introduced in Washington Wednesday by U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore would enable the Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma to build a casino near the new Kansas Speedway in return for ending a lawsuit claiming rights to nearly 2,000 acres of industrial land.

The year-old lawsuit citing an old treaty has stymied legal transactions for an estimated 1,300 landowners in the Fairfax Industrial District of Kansas City, Kan.

"We need to find a real solution to the conflict ... and end the current dispute," said Moore, a Democrat being challenged by Republican Adam Taff in next month's election.

Since Congress is expected to adjourn within a week, Moore's bill would have to be attached to other legislation to have a chance for passage this year. If not approved before adjournment, it would have to be re-introduced next year.

The tribe also would agree to abandon any future claims to land in Wyandotte County.

The tribe would buy 52.8 acres of land just south of Interstate 70 and Kansas Speedway along Riverview Avenue. Moore's bill guarantees that the tract would be declared tribal reservation land and legally qualified for casino gambling.

The tribe has been trying for the past decade to open a casino in Wyandotte County, which the state has opposed. Gov. Bill Graves remains opposed to such a casino, a spokesman said Wednesday, because the tribe is not one of the four indigenous Kansas tribes.

Moore's bill would call for tribal consultation and a formal agreement with Kansas on gambling procedures.

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