Officials, Tribe still rolling the dice on Lansing casino

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Will a casino be built in downtown Lansing in the foreseeable future or will the project bust? 

The casino project was proposed in 2012 and it’s one that’s still at odds with the federal government, city of Lansing and Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians.

If approved, the casino would be built at the corner of Michigan Avenue and North Cedar Street which is near the Lansing Center.

The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians had plans to build two casino’s…one in Lansing and another near Detroit but last July the federal government denied the tribe’s application to put land into trust for both projects.

Then Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero said while the U.S. Department of the Interior’s decision to deny the tribe’s trust application was disappointing, the city was going to continue the fight to bring a casino to downtown Lansing.

But what does current Lansing Mayor Andy Schor think about the project?

While he wasn’t available for an on-camera interview, Mayor Schor did send a statement to 6 News on Wednesday saying…

“The city hasn’t heard anything further since the federal government rejected the application.”

The mayor says he will reevaluate the project once the contract for the property expires which will be on January 1, 2019.

Meanwhile, the legal team for the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians sent a statement to 6 News as well on Wednesday saying…

The Sault Tribe remains fully committed to pursuing the Lansing casino project and we are confident that our legal right to do so will be upheld in the end.  We are continuing to work with our legal and development teams to determine the best path forward and to assure that we have the resources to carry the project to a successful conclusion — for the tribe, the city of Lansing, and the Lansing Promise Program.

While nothing is set in stone yet, there’s one thing that’s for sure…the city and Sault Tribe are still gambling with the idea of a casino downtown.

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