A federal court has ruled against Duluth Minnesota‘s attempt for the reinstatement of an agreement. The prior agreement in connection with the Fond-du-Luth Casino had provided the city with millions annually.
In 2011, the agreement with Duluth to operate the casino was not in line with federal law. The National Indian Gaming Commission made the statement and said the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa should only have “sole proprietary interest” in the operating casino. The ruling has been challenged by the city, but Colleen Kollar-Kelly, the federal judge on the case, upheld the notice by the commissioner.
The Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa band was paying Duluth around $6 million each year for the operation of the casino. The actual court action is a result of a dispute over payments to the city. The yearly payments ceased in 2009.
In 2013, a judge ordered the band to pay over $10 million for rent owed to cover 2009, 2010 and 2011, but no further payments will be required. Just in December, the band was involved in another lawsuit, where the city filed against the band’s attempt to put Carter Hotel Properties into trust. The suit was dismissed as a judge found that the band had not breached any agreements with the city.
In late February of this year, the tribe announced a $3 million dollar renovation to the downtown property.