Issue 170
December 15 - 21, 2003
Volume 3
page 2

Tribe aims for February opening of casino
As reported by The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier

Tama --- Officials with the Meskwaki tribe have scuttled plans to reopen their casino by Christmas, and now say February is more realistic.

The casino, one of Tama County's largest employers, has been shut down since May when federal regulators closed it for violating federal tribal gaming rules.

Tribal attorneys say the National Indian Gaming Commission is not expected to allow the casino to reopen until the Bureau of Indian Affairs rules on the legitimacy of tribal elections held in October and November. A review of the elections now underway is expected to take four months, officials say.
The elections were held to resolve a leadership dispute that began in March when the elected tribal council was ousted by a group of leaders selected by the tribe's hereditary chief. The elected leaders were accused of ignoring recall petitions.

The appointed council, led by chairman Homer Bear Jr., took control of government and gambling operations until a federal judge upheld a gaming commission order to close. The casino employs about 1,300 workers and earns about $3 million a week in revenue.

The tribe held separate elections in October and November, one by the appointed council and the other by the elected group.

Initially, the Bureau of Indian Affairs recognized the election organized by the Bear council. The results of that vote put Bear and six other appointed council members in power.

The other election, sponsored by supporters of the elected group, produced different results. Troy Wanatee was elected chairman and six others who were supportive of the elected council were voted into office.

Leaders from both councils and their attorneys still disagree over the validity of the results.

"There is clearly a leadership dispute at present," attorney Fred Dorr, who represents the Wanatee council, wrote to the Bureau of Indian Affairs last month.

Officials from both sides say they will challenge the bureau's ruling in federal court if they don't agree.

Meanwhile, unemployment in Tama County was at 14 percent in October, up from 4 percent October 2002. The level is the highest in the state, according to officials with Iowa Workforce Development.





In Canandaigua It's A Casino And A Racetrack

Canandaigua, NY- The Finger Lakes Racetrack will soon add gaming to its attractions -- 1,000 new video lottery terminals will be installed at the track as part of a $10 million renovation.

The terminals will be inside a new gaming hall called a "Racino".

The new facility is predicted to create 250 full-time jobs.

Nokia's N-Gage hosts mobile gaming competition

A new wireless tournament called Mobile Raditude began today across the US. The tournament is hosted by Activision's Tony Hawk's Pro Skater for the N-Gage game deck where gamers can challenge high scores posted by other players in the N-Gage Arena. By challenging and beating posted scores, gamers will increase their overall points standings and ranking on the tournament ladder. Prizes such as an N-Gage skateboard will be awarded to the Top 10 each month. The tournament will run through February.

"The Mobile Raditude tournament will showcase N-Gage's exclusive wireless gaming capabilities and allow bragging rights to reign supreme," said Paul Whitaker, N-Gage Arena Manager for the Americas region. "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater is an outstanding game to launch the first mobile competition and showcase the anytime, anywhere power of N-Gage Arena."
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater for Nokia N-Gage offers multiplayer capabilities, via Bluetooth wireless technology, as well as unique mobile capabilities, such as uploading high scores.

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