Feinstein bashes Yuba casino again as deadline nears
With only days before Gov. Jerry Brown has to make a decision on whether Enterprise Rancheria can move forward. US Sen. Dianne Feinstein has sent a last-minute letter encouraging the governor not to approve the Yuba County-based project.
The letter, dated Aug. 9, states a conclusion by the U.S. Department of the Interior finding strong support for the casino is inaccurate, and ignores opposition to the casino and resort being built.
She also refers to a 2005 advisory ballot measure in which county voters turned down the casino proposal with 52 percent of the vote. The measure had no effect in law.
"In addition to the countywide vote, of the 21 officials polled by the Department of the Interior on the Yuba Casino, only one (Yuba County) supported the project," Feinstein states in the letter.
Feinstein's letter, which also expresses her opposition to a proposed casino in Madera County also before Brown, states such casinos have proliferated in California, with more than 60 opening since 1999.
"And today, with the market already saturated, tribes from rural areas are 'reservation shopping' for casinos in more densely populated areas to obtain a better share of the market," the letter states. "This cannot be allowed to happen; enough is enough."
The term "reservation shopping" refers to tribes looking for a place where they can locate a casino by claiming the area was part of tribal lands. The Estom Yumeka Maidu, who are sponsoring Enterprise Rancheria, said their tribal lands included both Yuba County and Butte County, where the tribal's original reservation was.
Brown has until Aug. 31 to make a decision on Enterprise Rancheria, after the federal government gave the go ahead to the project on that day last year. His office has not indicated when he'll make a decision.
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