Chippewa threatens to stop paying the city of Duluth

Duluth, Minnesota (AP) 9-08

Fond du Lac Band of Ojibwe Chairwoman Karen Diver is threatening to stop paying the city of Duluth money from the Fond-du-Luth Casino.

The Duluth-Fond du Lac agreement is from the 1980s and ‘90s, when the city allowed downtown property to become federal Indian land.

The band’s casino receives police, fire and public works services from Duluth. The city gets 19 percent of gross revenue from slot machines.

City finance manager Genie Stark says the contract lasts until 2036 but it can be renegotiated next year.

Diver says she wants the city to put more efforts into the “long-term health of the band,” including more resources into downtown development.

Diver and Duluth Mayor Don Ness say they hope for respectful negotiations. Ness expects them to begin early next year.