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Timbisha Shoshone casino update: NEPA required for gaming contract - The Daily Independent

JESSICA WESTON April 11, 2018 The biggest takeaway from the April 4 meeting among City Manager Ron Strand, Timbisha Shoshone Tribal Chairman George Gholson, the US Department of the Interior and others is that the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) process would be required before a casino could be built in Ridgecrest even if local lands are taken into mandatory trust for the project.

According to an email from Strand, staff from the Office of Indian Gaming said that although a mandatory land acquisition would not require the NEPA process, the NEPA process would still be required to establish an Indian Gaming Management Contract under the jurisdiction of the National Indian Gaming Commission.

 The general presumption prior to this was that if the land is acquired via a mandatory trust acquisition process that the NEPA process would not be required. Local casino opponents have complained that the Tribal Environmental Impact Report (TEIR) environmental process is not rigorous enough to protect the city's interests and have criticized the presumed lack of NEPA process. The draft TEIR report was issued in December 2017.

Complete article: Timbisha Shoshone casino update: NEPA required for gaming contract - The Daily Independent