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Crime and Courts

Kansas Sues To Block Wyandotte Nation’s Plans For Casino

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davidgsteadman, flickr Creative Commons
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TOPEKA — Kansas filed a lawsuit Monday against top officials at the U.S. Department of Interior in an effort to block the Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma from building a casino on land it owns in Park City, the latest legal twist in a decades-long dispute over the tribe’s legal authority on the 10-acre parcel.

The lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Kansas is an effort to set aside a decision issued in May by the Interior Department that cleared the way for the project. That decision reversed the department’s earlier decision from 2014 that had denied the tribe’s request to build the casino on the land it purchased in 1992.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in a news release that Kansas learned about the department’s changed position from news reports, despite the state’s significant participation in administrative proceedings and litigation between 2010 and 2014.

The proposed tribal casino in Park City would be located about 30 miles from the Kansas Star casino in Mulvane. Sumner County and the city of Mulvane joined the state in its lawsuit, as did the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri in Kansas and Nebraska.