By Matt Youngfrau
MONTICELLO January 25, 2002 Sullivan County yesterday signed its second casino agreement.
The county and the Stockbridge-Munsee Tribe have reached a compensation agreement for a casino off Route 17s Exit 107 (Thompsonville Road) in the Town of Thompson, according to Legislature Chair Rusty Pomeroy and County Attorney Ira Cohen. The vote was 7-1, with Legislator Jodi Goodman against it and Legislator Chris Cunningham absent. (Goodman did not specify her reasons for the opposing vote.)
Tribal representatives, who were expected to take the agreement to the tribal council for their signing last night, were at the Government Center in Monticello on Tuesday and worked with county officials all day to reach an agreement. The agreement, drafted by the County Attorneys office, was ready for the Legislature to discuss and approve at their monthly meeting yesterday afternoon.
Details of the agreement were released late yesterday and will be explained in Tuesdays Democrat, due to press time restrictions. The agreement is monetarily the same as what the county developed with the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe for a casino at Kutsher's Sports Academy. That deal calls for the county to receive $15,000,000 a year for a seven-year period.
It is expected that the tribe will file its casino application with the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Before a casino can be built, the BIA must give their approval (which is what the St. Regis Mohawks are waiting for). And New York State Governor George Pataki has to reach an agreement with each of the tribes as well.
Nevertheless, a signing ceremony is expected to take place sometime next week.