tribal gaming

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and Civil Rights Attorney Ryan Kiesel about a move by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority to spend $2.2 billion to hand the state's Medicaid program over to a for profit company, MyHealth Access out of Tulsa losing its challenge after getting denied a bid with the OHCA despite coming in $30 million dollars less than the winner and Attorney General Mike Hunter suing a piano bar owner after he failed to produce a promised two million masks despite an upfront payment of more than $2 million

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The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt lacks the authority to enter into gaming compacts with Kialegee Tribal Town and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians.

Last month, the U.S. Department of Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs approved the Kiowa Tribe's request to put new land in western Oklahoma into trust for economic development purposes.

The 11.33-acre parcel in Hobart will be used for an entertainment venue, which will include a restaurant, office space and possibly a casino.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and Civil Rights Attorney Ryan Kiesel about the outgoing Republican Oklahoma County Sheriff endorsing the Democratic candidate for the election to replace him, State Question 805 to remove sentence enhancements for nonviolent offenders and State Question 814 to take money from the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust to give to lawmakers to pay for Medicaid expansion.

 

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Last Friday, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt decided against appealing a U.S. District Court Judge's ruling that said compacts between the state and the tribes renewed on January 1st of this year.

"While I have chosen not to appeal this decision, I believe that the people of Oklahoma will demand a fair deal that benefits all 4 million Oklahomans," Stitt said in a statement.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about a criminal justice reform group calling on Governor Kevin Stitt and the Department of Corrections to take steps to stem the spread of COVID-19, Tulsa City Council unanimously approved a new Hate Crimes ordinance to include sexual orientation and gender identity and the state Supreme Court denies Stitt's request for a rehearing on its decision over tribal gaming compacts.

 

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The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled in July the gaming compacts Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt entered into with the Otoe-Missouria Tribe and Comanche Nation were invalid.

Stitt requested a rehearing of that petition but in a 5-1 ruling on Monday, members of the Oklahoma Supreme Court denied that request.

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The Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association released tribal gaming numbers on Monday, showing a nearly $30 million drop in fees paid to the state.

In March, things looked to be on track to be a record year for tribal gaming. Then, the pandemic hit and tribes voluntarily closed casino operations out of concern for member and public safety.

As a result, April saw an exclusivity payment of only $20,000. That's compared to more than $12 million in February.

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Gaming compacts signed by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt with the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee and Kialegee Tribal Town in July have been deemed approved by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

The gaming compacts were approved by default because the U.S. Department of the Interior took no action within the 45-day window allowed by the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

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Four tribes filed a federal lawsuit over the approval of two new gaming compacts signed in April.

The Cherokee Nation, Chickasaw Nation, Choctaw Nation and Citizen Potawatomi Nation filed a federal lawsuit against the Department of the Interior, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt, Comanche Nation Chairman William Nelson and Otoe-Missouria Tribal Chairman John Shotton.

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