Many citizens in California were outraged when lawmakers decided that the North Folk Rancheria of Mono Indians could build a new casino outside of Madera. A rival tribe and other opponents to the compact hoped that the state legislature would side in their favor. Half of the lawmakers are serving their first term and lobbyists believed that they could convince them to deny the tribe permission to build.

Critics feel that this decision can set a precedent that will allow tribes to build casinos off of their reservations. However, they may still have a chance to overturn the decision. State voters will decide whether to approve or overturn this compact in a referendum next year. This is the fourth issue that has qualified for a referendum in next year’s election.

California Secretary of State Debra Bowen said that the issue will go to a vote in November 2014. The voters will ultimately decide whether or not the tribe can build the casino in Madera even though the compact has already been approved by Governor Brown, the state legislature and online casino the Obama Administration.

Supporters of the casino are trying to encourage voters not to overturn the compact. They said that it will help create jobs and stimulate the local economy. The area around Madera was hit hard by the recession and local officials feel that something needs to be done to fix it.

Most of the opponents of the compact are competitors to the new casino and their investors. They feel that all tribes should be held to the same standards regarding where they can build their casinos. Competing tribes feel that the new casino threatens their largest lifelines.

Staff - Various members of the staff at contributed to this report.