The Times Herald Record reported this morning another glitch in the casino approval process. (See article.) The Dept. of Interior and the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) have struck a deal whereby they’ve agreed to not litigate the NRDC-led court challenge to the environmental approval until after the Interior Dept. has completed its review process (and Sec’y of the Interior Dick Kempthorne has agreed to take the 30 acres of the casino site into trust as tribal land.) Kempthorne is an opponent of off-reservation casinos and under no obligation to complete the review and take the lands into trust. So he may take his sweet time, and possibly take no action at all through the end of his term. If Kempthorne agrees to take the land into trust (and that’s a BIG if), then the lawsuit will be restarted and fast-tracked, but will take 4 to 8 months from that point. So its very unlikely we’ll see any casino green light this year.