Federal executive dismisses appeal against proposed EG casino … – Elk Grove Citizen

The Wilton Rancheria’s chairman on July 17 declared success in moving their proposed Elk Grove casino-resort forward.

They announced that a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) executive dismissed an appeal that attempted to block the casino site’s land from being placed into a federal trust.

This 35.9-acre site is next to the future Elk Grove Outlet Collection mall near Kammerer Road, off Highway 99.

Wilton Rancheria Chairman Raymond “Chuckie” Hitchcock referred to the appeal as a “small hurdle” along the tribe’s “path toward self-sufficiency.”

“This decision solidly confirms the placing of land into federal trust was valid and that we have every right to continue forward with our economic development plans,” he said.

“This was another attempt to cloud our land into trust process by Stand Up for California! and card rooms. So, I’m ecstatic for that (dismissal of the appeal).”

The Penryn-based Stand Up for California!, which refers to itself as a casino watchdog group, filed the appeal.

Michael S. Black, acting assistant secretary for (the Bureau of) Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior, found that then-Acting Assistant Secretary Lawrence Roberts’ Jan. 19 record of decision for the tribe had been properly delegated and exercised with authority.

Cheryl Schmit, director of Stand Up for California!, said that the proposed casino-resort project is “far from a done deal.”

“This dismissal doesn’t change anything,” she said. “All of our arguments are preserved and will be amended into our complaint in federal court.

“The BIA can’t just thrust a casino into an urban community willy-nilly. In this instance, the BIA did not follow federal laws and regulations. A dismissal of the administrative appeal does not damage any of our arguments going forward.”

Hitchcock alleged that Stand Up for California! has been distorting the truth.

“Everything they’ve said up to

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