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Ruling: State Courts Can’t Rule on Hotel Dispute

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – The Minnesota Supreme Court says state courts lack jurisdiction to rule on a dispute over the Fond du Lac Band’s proposal to use a downtown Duluth hotel for its casino operations.

The Lake Superior Chippewa band bought the Carter Hotel building adjacent to the Fond-du-Luth Casino in 2010 and is seeking federal approval to declare the property as “Indian Country.”

The City of Duluth filed suit in state court, alleging a 1986 agreement between Duluth and the band gives the city a say.

Reports say the city contended it is allowed to sue the band in state court under the 1986 agreement that created the casino. But the state Supreme Court found that a 1994 agreement between the city and the band moved all potential litigation to federal court.

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