Last week Cedric Cromwell revealed a two paragraph form letter from Department of Interior Secretary Kevin Washburn saying the department would begin reviewing our land in trust application for exception status. The second paragraph was the clincher because it stated that even if that extraordinary criteria were met, the Department’s authority to take the land in trust was still in question.
Translation: Back to square one. Not very assuring to anyone, let alone the Gaming Commission.
So Cedric is trying to appease the Massachusetts Gaming Commission with a form letter to appear as though the ” Tribe is back on track. ” This is with a letter he was sitting on for two weeks.
The bigger problem is compiling the documentation to justify exception status. Clearly Cedric’s people don’t have it because they’re sending up SOS flares for help. Lumbee attorney Arlinda Locklear was hired about 5 months ago to take the lead on the exception status effort. Well she hasn’t had much luck and was forced to have an intermediary call Patty Oakley for documents and maps. Maps that she needed by last Friday and apparently couldn’t find. Patty did not have the maps to give her. Earlier, Locklear asked Ramona Peters for the paper work but she didn’t know what Locklear was talking about. About 8 months ago Ramona and Jessie Baird were the designated experts on this critical task . Jessie was telling everyone we were linked to Taunton because we traveled back and forth on the Taunton River……like every tribe in New England I suppose. Not good. People like Jessie are problematic because they’re Chameleons who change and disguise themselves to assume different identities. Red lights flash PROCEED AT YOUR OWN RISK.
Amelia Bingham reportedly ran Jessie and Paula Peters out of her yard when they were trolling for ” documents.”
This points to a bigger problem with this administration … poor leadership, bad planning and well, you know the rest.
Locklear looked like she might be able to help. She worked for over a decade for her own tribe, the Lumbee. But she was never able to satisfy the Congress to get them recognized. Now she’s working for the most documented tribe in the nation, and she can’t find what she needs.
Then again she’s working against tough odds. Remember, Cedric selected the worst site in the state 5 months before the deadline and submitted an incomplete LIT application. How can we forget the many millions spent on a disastrous Compact negotiated by Aaron Tobey. It was dubbed the worst ever in Indian Country.
Cedric Cromwell is trying to do what the Big Ballers in Indian Country have taken a decade to achieve. He’s been reckless with our reputation and irresponsible with our future.
Most of us want a casino, but clearly this administration has made the the path to that goal pretty rough.
Good luck Arlinda.