Saturday, December 23, 2006

Decision on Catskill Casino Is Said to Rest With Spitzer

New York Times CHARLES V. BAGLI

"Once again, it’s wait-and-see time for proponents of a $600 million casino in the Catskills for the St. Regis Mohawk tribe.
Somewhat unexpectedly, Gov.
George E. Pataki has decided to leave the fate of the 10-year-old plan to build the casino next to the Monticello racetrack to his successor, Eliot Spitzer, according to a senior state official.
The Mohawks and their supporters were upbeat about prospects for the Las Vegas-style casino last week, after the federal
Interior Department announced that it was approving an environmental review, thereby eliminating a major obstacle for the project. The Interior Department has approved only three other off-reservation casinos since 1998.
The tribe had hoped that Governor Pataki, who has long supported American Indian casinos as a key to reviving the Catskill economy, would formally concur next week with federal officials in determining that the project was in the best interests of the tribe and would not harm the surrounding communities.
But that does not appear to be happening.
“We won’t move forward with a binding, long-term binding policy decision without the concurrence of the incoming governor,” said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity." As it should be........
for the rest of this article....... andy

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