Keetoowah casino to remain open
BY MICHAEL OVERALL World staff writer
Monday, July 30, 2012
The Keetoowah casino in Tahlequah will stay open after a last-minute decision from federal officials to put the property in trust.
The casino was facing a midnight deadline to close unless it could get federal approval for the land's trust status, something it had been trying to accomplish for more than 20 years.
The tribe owned the land but couldn't claim sovereignty over it because it wasn't in trust.
In June, the tribe reached an agreement with state officials to close the casino if the property wasn’t in trust by the last day of July. And a federal judge reaffirmed that deadline three weeks ago.
The decision finally came at 4:20 p.m. CDT, just as federal offices were closing in Washington, D.C.