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Court ruling could affect Osage casinos

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April 12, 2010

TULSA - The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an earlier ruling that Osage County is not an Indian reservation. This could have a devastating effect on the Osage Nation.

The ruling means that three of the tribe's seven casinos, including its largest Million Dollar Elm in Tulsa, are not on reservation land. Indian casinos must be on tribal land that is transferred into trust with the federal government.

An official with the Osage Nation, Tribal Congressman Kurgee Supernaw, estimates the tribe could lose half to three-quarters of the its net income if it loses those 3 casinos.

The tribe is asking for a rehearing of the case. It may also file an application with the U.S. Interior Department to transfer the land into trust.

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