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Hopi Tribe to Vote on Casino Issue

8 March 2004

ARIZONA – As reported by the Arizona Daily Sun: "When members of the Hopi tribe head to the polls for the regional general election in May, they will decide whether the reservation will have a casino -- or whether they will lease slots out to another tribe as allowed by Arizona gaming law.

"The Hopis are the lone tribe in Arizona that has yet to sign onto the state's gaming compact, which follows provisions of the 2002 voter- approved Proposition 202.

"…The vote comes as the tribe faces the prospective loss of more than $20 million a year in royalties to the tribe from Peabody Coal if the Mohave Generating Plant in Laughlin, Nev., is closed as early as 2006.

"…The committee developed four basic choices for the Hopi people. They could choose to do nothing; they could choose to 'lease' slot machines to another tribe as a source of revenue; they could have a casino and lease some slots; or they could have a casino and retain all of their slots.

"Under the provision of the state gaming compact, the Hopi would be allotted 900 slot machines, according to Arizona Department of Gaming…"

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