The Times Herald Record reported today that a coalition of groups, including the National Resources Defense Council and the Sullivan County Farm Bureau, have filed a lawsuit in Federal court challenging the environmental approval for the St. Regis Mohawk Casino at the Monticello raceway.
The end of the article mentions a number of other obstacles that the casino faces. Many people are under the impression that the casino has been approved. Notably, the article mentions Secretary of Interior Dirk Kempthorne must still give final approval and
agree to take just less than 30 acres of land into trust for the casino. That is a MAJOR step, and many believe that the Dept. of Interior’s environmental approval (which the lawsuit is challenging) is the same as a final casino approval by the Dept. of Interior, but the big kahuna step is agreement by the Dept. of Interior to take the land in trust, essentially ‘creating’ sovereign off-reservation land for the casino.