The Yurok Tribal Elections Committee certified the results on Monday Feb. 24, of a controversial special referendum on the Nez Perce v. Salazar Settlement that called for $10.1 million to pay attorneys’ fees and to finance a resort casino in Klamath.
Yurok Tribal Chairman Thomas O’Rourke said, “I view this vote to be a mandate from the tribal membership to move forward on the hotel and casino plan.”
Some tribal members said the special referendum was rushed through illegally, in violation of the tribal constitution, because of a petition for a competing referendum signed by over 640 Yurok tribal members.
Frank McCovey said, “They held up [James] Dunlap’s petition for three weeks so they could get theirs out first. Otherwise they’d have both been on the same ballot.”