Sullivan County Democrat
Callicoon, New York
January 22, 2010 Issue
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Mohawks nix off reservation casinos

By Dan Hust
MONTICELLO — The St. Regis Mohawks won’t be building a casino in Sullivan County.
On Saturday, 178 tribal members voted against pursuing off-reservation gaming in the Catskills, compared to 140 who approved.
According to the Mohawks’ director of public information, David Staddon, it’s a legally binding vote, meaning the Tribal Council must honor members’ intentions.
That also ostensibly means the definitive end to restarted negotiations with Empire Resorts to bring a Mohawk casino to Monticello Raceway.
Empire Vice President Charles Degliomini said yesterday that Empire is evaluating the vote and its ramifications.
“The company supports the Mohawk people and respects its process and procedures,” he remarked.
“I’m sorry to see they’re not interested in coming to the Town of Thompson,” said Thompson Supervisor Tony Cellini. “They’ve been a great tribe to work with.”
Cellini added that he wasn’t hugely surprised by this latest curve in what he termed a “rollercoaster ride,” but he remains disappointed.
“If they change their minds, we’re here to work with them,” he said.
Still, he pointed out that two other tribes continue to be serious contenders in the Monticello area.
The Senecas and Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans each remain interested in siting a casino in Bridgeville, and Louis Cappelli’s Concord dreams include a casino.
Those plans, however, must await a decision from the U.S. Department of the Interior as to whether or not Native American gambling facilities can be located far from the tribes’ actual reservations.
That decision, according to federal officials, is expected in the very near future.

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