PHOENIX, September 3, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Two rural Indian tribes fighting to protect hard-won economic opportunities for their members are trying to block a lawsuit by a third tribe that threatens this advance and threatens the much-anticipated adoption of mobile sports betting Arizona. The Tonto Apache and Quechan tribes are represented by Rosette, LLP.
Last week, the Yavapai Prescott Indian tribe called on the Maricopa County Superior Court to suspend implementation of a new law (HB 2772) granting sports betting licenses to ten professional sports franchises and ten tribes that would allow licensees to accept sports betting the 9th of September.
The lawsuit also seeks to void an amended gaming contract negotiated by the government. Doug Ducey and 20 of Arizona 22 nationally recognized Indian tribes, including the rural Tonto-Apache and Quechan tribes. The amended contract, which was approved by the US Department of the Interior and went into effect in May, allows the tribes to expand their casinos and offer new table games such as roulette, baccarat and craps.
The Yavapai Prescott claim the legislation is unconstitutional, saying it will be unfairly disadvantaged by the expansion and new betting opportunities allowed by the law and the amended treaty. Indeed, the leaders of the tribe have chosen not to participate in negotiations with the state and are pursuing a desperate, 11NS-Hourly strategy that would unfairly punish tribes who obeyed the rules and adhered to the conditions.
“The truth is, we have spent five years in careful, trusting negotiations with the governor and the Department of Gaming to protect our interests and ensure that our revised contract brings the best possible economic benefit to our employees,” said Tonto Apache Chairman Calvin Johnson. “We tried to get involved Yavapai Leaders in developing strategies that would benefit small, like-minded tribes like ours, but they refused, saying they would simply sue if they were dissatisfied with the outcome of the negotiations. “
The trunk of the Tonto Apache is in Payson and operates the Mazatzal Casino. The Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Reservation is located in Yuma and run the Paradise Casino. Both were among the ten tribes that applied for and received sports betting licenses under the new law.
“We have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars and an extraordinary amount of work to secure our mobile betting license, which will open up significant new opportunities for our tribe,” said the President of Quechan Jordan Joaquin. “It’s very unfortunate that Yavapai trying to untangle all of these advances after choosing to sit on the sidelines during our compact change negotiations. “
A judge will hold a hearing on Monday Yavapai Tribe’s motion for an interim injunction and injunction to block HB 2722. The Tonto and Quechan tribes have filed a letter of intent to intervene in the legal action and will also petition for dismissal if necessary.
A recently prepared statement said Senator TJ Shope, R-Coolidgewho supported the legislation, called it fair and just law, and the Yavapais last minute legal maneuvers.
“The timing of these challenges, at the start of the selection process and not during the legislative period or when the bill is passed, will result in a completion of this qualification-based award process in the Department of Gaming,” said Shope.
“I expect that all legal challenges will be quickly dismissed so that the economic opportunities that have already arisen from the amendment to the Tribal-State Gaming Compact can continue to be realized.”
For more information, please contact Rob Rosette the law firm Rosette, LLP, at [email protected] or 480-242-9810.
SOURCE Rosette, LLP