St. Regis Band of Mohawk Indians of New York


Saying the nation is running a money-losing operation, the BIA has rejected a plan to run electronic gambling machines at the nation's Akwesasne reservation. In a Dec. 7 letter, BIA director Kevin Gover said the proposal doesn't address concerns the BIA raised in July when the compact amendment came up, the Times Union of Albany reported. Primary among Gover's concerns is that the deal still calls for the Mohawks to share revenue with the state, even if they lose money. "No evidence has been presented that the tribe currently has a positive net revenue," Gover wrote. The proposed contract extended a deal given the Mohawks in 1999 by Gov. George Pataki. That deal, which expired in May, is being challenged in court by critics who say the governor can't enter into a gaming compact without legislative approval. The BIA also is concerned the tribe would have to share revenue even if New York's Lottery Division starts running the same kinds of games, the newspaper reported. "The state gets no part of Indian gaming revenues unless it is justified," Nedra Darling said. "We are looking out for the tribe's rights." Despite the expired contract, the tribe continues to operate its casino and electronic games, to the dismay of anti-casino groups.