Casino battle still brewing

Mechoopda issued a blow in recent court ruling

The Mechoopda Maidu were issued a blow on Tuesday (July 13), when a federal court ruled against the tribe’s plan to build a casino south of Chico.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 in favor of Butte County, which for years has opposed the proposed casino. The court determined that the Bush administration’s Department of the Interior did not provide sufficient explanation for not reconsidering its decision to approve the project.

In April 2009, a U.S. judge upheld decisions made by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and National Indian Gaming Commission that the Mechoopda’s land along Highways 99 and 149 is indeed suitable for a casino. The county sued, asking for reconsideration.

The tribe’s efforts to build a casino facility on a portion of a 645-acre parcel reach back to 2002.