Saturday, January 13, 2007

Rep. Candice Miller introduced HR 813 on February 13, 2003 to approve settlement of unsubstantiated land claims and a casino for Port Huron





  • Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, for more than 100 years, the Bay Mills Indian Community has sought justice for the illegal sale of over 110 acres of Chippewa County lands which, prior to the sale, had been homeland to a large group of the Tribe's ancestors. Today I am introducing legislation that finally brings relief to this group of Michigan's Native people.

  • The legislation I propose today also brings too-long awaited relief to the non-Indian citizens of Michigan who live within the Tribe's Chippewa county claim area. Because the Indian claim has remained unresolved for many years, innocent homeowners have watched their property values plummet to 90 percent below what that property would otherwise be worth on the open market. This legislation accomplishes these ends by ratifying the Land Settlement Agreement signed by the Bay Mills Indian Community and the State of Michigan on August 23, 2002.

  • This Land Settlement Agreement is the product of a long and careful negotiation process between the Tribe and the State. It calls for the extinguishment of all of the Tribe's title and right to the Chippewa County disputed lands and in return provides for the Tribe to receive replacement land in Port Huron that will be put into trust (and therefore protected by federal law from illegal sale) by the Secretary of the Interior. Further, the settlement is structured in such a way as to ensure that neither the taxpayers of Michigan nor the taxpayers of the United States will ever be saddled with the cost of paying a monetary damage award, which otherwise could be quite substantial, to the Tribe.

  • Finally, and of particular importance to my constituents in the 10th District, the settlement agreement will enable the City of Port Huron and the Tribe to engage in desperately needed and mutually beneficial economic development, of a casino. The people of Port Huron approved a June 2001 casino advisory referendum. This legislation is critical in allowing the residents of the Port Huron community to actively participate in its economic recovery through the establishment of a casino approved by the people. The Port Huron community has been brutalized by the loss of thousands of manufacturing jobs, a double-digit unemployment rate that doubles our state and federal average and a Canadian casino located just 500 yards from our border. That casino attracts more than 1 million American visitors per year, which is devastating to our tourism and entertainment business. A casino on the American side of the border would create 3,000 American jobs while providing competition to our Canadian neighbors at the only border crossing with Ontario where we have not responded by having a casino of our own.

  • Resolution of this land claim is long overdue. In sponsoring this legislation, I am proud to be part of a solution crafted to benefit the Tribe, residents of the claim area, and the taxpayers of Michigan.

  • I join with the members of the Bay Mills Indian Community, the Charlotte Beach landowners, my constituents in Port Huron, and my distinguished colleague Congressman DON YOUNG in support of this proposed settlement. This legislation provides a fair solution that is long overdue for many Native Americans.

You may also want to review these posts:

* The Verifiable Truth: Port Huron struggles, is worthy of a break; but editor fails to recognize local casino plan has national shockwaves, which supersede local needs

* The Verifiable Truth: in Governor John Engler's opinion, "Michigan has enough casinos"

* The Verifiable Truth: Aide negotiated '11th Hour' Port Huron casino deal for Gov. Engler; then returned to private practice, retained by those who got the deal

* The Verifiable Truth: Bay Mills Settlement Agreement and Bill HR 831 on the Dykema Gossett Web site

* The Verifiable Truth: GOP Congresswoman received at least $74,000 in bundled funds from Ilitch Family sources after introducing bill for syndicator-backed Indian casino

* Candy Land: Calling for More Candy

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Ilitch has backed loosing sports teams and pizza, but casinos in Detroit? 10.09.06 ● Marian Ilitch #1 on "25 Most Powerful People" to Watch 2006” global gaming business o1.oo.o5 ● My Kingdom for a Casino Forbes 05.08.06 ● Big Lagoon’s casino dream awakens north coast journal 07.28.05 ● Shinnecocks launch legal claim to Hamptons land 06.16.05 ● Ilitch Plans to Expand Casino Empire 07.05.05 ● Ilitch outbids partners 04.14.05 ● Ilitch enmeshed in NY casino dispute 03.20.05 ● Marian Ilitch, high roller 03.20.05 ● MGM Mirage to Decide on Offer for Casino in Detroit 04.16.05 ● Secret deal for MotorCity alleged 02.15.05 ● Los Coyotes get new developer 02.08.05 Detroit casino figure to finance Barstow project 07.07.03 ● Indian Band trying to put casino in Barstow 06.04.03 Pizza matriarch takes on casino roles 10.23.02 ● Vanderbilt gets short straw in negotiations for a casino Lansing Journal 10.06.02 ● Indians aim to drive family from tribe in vicious dispute san diego union tribune 04.09.00 ●Malik owns 2000 Michigan Quarter Horse of the Year 01.01.00 ● Detroit Team to run Michigan’s newest Indian casino 05.23.99 Tiger ties tangle Marian Ilitch 04.29.99 ● Three investors must sell their Detroit casino interests 04.25.99 ● Partners’ cash revived election; They say money was crucial to Prop-E 04.25.99 Investors have troubled histories las vegas review journal 04.27.99 ● Investor served probation for domestic assault on 12 year old boy 04.25.99 Can a pair win a jackpot?: local men hope to... 03.17.97

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