Massachusetts tribe hopes to resume building casino

Photo courtesy: MGNonline

MASHPEE, Mass. (AP) – A Massachusetts tribe says it hopes to resume construction on a $1 billion casino in Taunton this summer.

The Mashpee Wampanoag tribe said Friday it was encouraged by word that the U.S. Department of Interior plans to issue a new decision by mid-June on the tribe’s land status.

The Mashpee broke ground on a casino last year but after some Taunton residents sued to stop it, a federal judge ruled that the department lacked the authority to place more than 300 acres of land for the tribe into trust.

Tribal Council chairman Cedric Cromwell says the judge later said the department could issue a revised ruling clarifying the land is an established reservation.

Cromwell says the tribe still hopes to open the gambling hall in 2018.