State and Martha’s Vineyard want to see change in recent appeals court decision involving Wampanoag Tribe casino efforts

Just a few weeks ago, an appeals court ruled in favor of the Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head in their efforts to create a casino in Martha’s Vineyard, an island of Massachusetts, located just south of Cape Cod. A 2015 lower court decision that blocked the plans of the tribe to construct a casino on tribal lands located in Martha’s Vineyard was reversed by a United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston earlier this month and now the state as well as Martha’s Vineyard want to see the decision appealed.

With the ruling from 2015, it was decided by the court that the tribe did not supply governmental power over their land and the tribe was effectively banned from operating a casino of any kind on the island. By June of last year, the Department of Justice had filed a brief that supported the tribe and by early April of this year, the ruling by Judge Juan Torruella paved th 7BALL e way for the tribe to continue with plans for their gaming venue.

The tribe wants to convert an unfinished community center into an electronic bingo hall and has estimated that the establishment could generate as much as $4.5 million before taxes, which would help to stimulate the economic growth of the community, creating 100 full time employment positions in the process.

Now, it seems the state of Massachusetts and Martha’s Vineyard are not happy with the recent appeals court decision. Both have filed an appeal within the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston this past week in order to ask for a reconsideration of the decision from earlier their month. According to, Cheryl Andrews-Maltais, the Chairwoman of the tribe, has dismissed this appeal as last-ditch procedural efforts.


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