County likely to set public meeting on Rohnert Park casino; critics file lawsuit

Sonoma County supervisors today will consider giving the public a chance to weigh in on the impacts of an Indian casino next to Rohnert Park that is in the final approval stages.

In an effort to thwart the project, casino opponents on Monday revived a previously rejected lawsuit that says the property where the 3,000-slot machine casino is to be built is not sovereign territory and is subject to state laws that prohibit gambling.

"This has not been Indian land since California came into the union; it's always been subject to California law," said Petaluma Councilman Mike Healy who wrote the legal argument.

The attorney for the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria said the suit was ill-founded.

"The arguments in this lawsuit ignore basic constitutional principles of federal Indian law and have been soundly rejected by the courts," attorney John Maier said in an email.

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