Jamul Action Committee
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Jamul Action Committee News

Legal Update

September 25, 2021

There is an important Supreme Court Conference scheduled for Monday, September 27, 2021!!! As most of you will recall, in August 2014, the Jamul Action Committee (JAC), several of its members, and the Jamul Community Church initiated litigation challenging the approval and construction of a Las Vegas style Indian casino in our community. JAC argued that the approval of the new casino violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934 (IRA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Equal Protection provisions of the U.S. Constitution.

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Legal Update

November 11, 2019

Oral arguments will be heard in two appeals before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal in San Francisco starting at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, November 13, 2019. To watch a live stream of the proceedings, you may go to the court’s website at https://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/. Scroll down the page to the section titled “Live Video Streaming of Oral Arguments and Events” and select the 9:30 a.m. San Francisco case.

Here is a summary of the more than 100 pages of briefing in the two appeals:

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Legal Update

October 18, 2018

The ABC Appeals Board has issued its decision in response to hearings held earlier in the year concerning the casino’s ABC permit and its effect on the community. The Appellants included Supervisor Dianne Jacob and a number of concerned community members.

Each of the three attorneys, Patrick Webb representing the Webb family and other petitioners, William Adams representing Jamul citizens at large and County Counsel, Thomas Bunton, representing Supervisor Dianne Jacob, spoke on various issues concerning the sale and consumption of alcohol including public safety.

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Legal Update

August 14, 2018

An ABC hearing was held on August 2nd concerning the casino’s alcohol license. JAC President Glenn Revell and JAC Attorney Ken Williams attended as observers. The following comments were prepared by Mr. Williams. As you read, remember the “protestants” in the ABC matter are divided between Pat Webb and Bill Adams. Mr. Tom Bunton, is from the office of San Diego County Counsel and represents the county’s (and our) interests.

“The Protestants’ presentations were very impressive and convincing. It was a one-two-three punch: (1) Bill Adams on the arbitrary pro-casino conditions and on the very important due process issues (which in my view should have been the show-stopper) not giving notice of the appeal to several hundred of the Protestants; (2) Tom Bunton for the County on the crucial need for transportation improvements and their direct link to the ABC license and on the with withdrawal of Penn as an applicant; and (3) Pat Webb on the fact that the land is not eligible for gaming under IGRA and therefore the casino is a public nuisance that is not eligible for an ABC license. Pat closed stressing the important need for ABC to protect the public by rejecting a license to serve alcohol at the public nuisance/illegal casino. Nice job!

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Legal Update

March 2, 2018

We have known all along that Penn National is in the business of gambling. When they developed and opened the Jamul Hollywood Casino they gambled on success, and unfortunately their shareholders will pay the price for their disregard for community opposition towards their project.

While we have no idea how JIV may proceed from here, we remain opposed to a casino operating on land that we believe is not authorized for gambling.

To prevail in court is the only permanent solution to this monstrosity! We wait for our day before the Ninth District Court of Appeal.

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Legal Update

February 9, 2018

Current news on the horizon; JAC continues to appeal the partially adverse ABC decision from last year. Unfortunately no briefing date for the appeal has been set as of today!

You may have seen the recent article in The San Diego Reader “The casino’s been built — Jamul is still fighting it.”

The article keeps repeating that the JIV is a “federally recognized tribe” - as though by saying it over and over again it will become truth. Simple repetition will NOT make it true! I believe that part of the story is based on misinformation provided by JIV and its lawyers.

Our “Appellant’s Opening Brief before the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit” outlines the history of the of JIV and the fact that the BIA has consistently confirmed that the JIV has never been a “federally recognized tribe.”

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ABC Update

October 27, 2017

By now many of you have heard that California’s Department of Alcohol Beverage Control has granted a permanent license for JIV to serve alcohol. This is not unexpected and is clearly an insult to the community and those who worked hard to oppose it.

The stated mission of the ABC is:

“To provide the highest level of service and public safety to the people of the State through licensing, education, and enforcement.”

This decision certainly does NOT accomplish that mission. The ABC did include some restrictions on the license, yet they fall short of what we had asked. Please urge your family and friends to not place themselves at risk to patronize this facility.

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Legal Update - July 7, 2017

July 7, 2017

Following the November ABC hearing, Administrative Judge Lewis recused himself from the case, after apparent misconduct within the ABC, the Governor’s office and other public agencies. A replacement judge has been appointed and another hearing date has been set. In the meantime, the ABC Board continues to allow the casino to serve alcohol under an interim liquor license. Ironically, local restaurants have waited months and are still not approved.

We have received notice of the continued ABC protest hearing before the Office of Administrative Hearings for September 6, 2017 at 10:00 a.m., at Skyline Church, 11330 Campo Road, Spring Valley, CA 91978. Please plan to attend.

On June 30, Supervisor Dianne Jacob held a press conference in Jamul to share the alarming increase of traffic accidents and DUIs citing the CHP’s most recent statistics. JAC wishes to thank all the people who made the press conference possible and all those who were able to attend. Read More »

Legal Update - June 14, 2017

June 14, 2017

A number of you have asked us for an update on the status of our ABC protest;

Here are the latest replies filed by Patrick Webb on behalf of the Protestants he represents. We anticipate the scheduling of a hearing with the new Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Adam Berg, sometime shortly. But there are no guarantee that we will have a hearing. It is possible, as disappointing as it might be, that ALJ Berg could decide whether to take “official and judicial notice” of our 11 documents without a hearing. Bonnington/Applicants have asked to file “closing briefs,” and have waived further hearing, if official notice of our documents is not granted.

As you will see from the replies, they have introduced nothing that disputes the fact that the Secretary of Interior has never made an Indian lands decision that the land would qualify for gambling. Nor could a Secretary of Interior have lawfully made such a decision, since the land was never taken into trust by the Secretary for a tribe under federal jurisdiction in 1934, and therefore could not have ever lawfully proclaimed the land to be a reservation. Therefore, if the law is followed, the ALJ will find that the Applicants have not met their burden of proof to prove that they are not operating a public gambling nuisance on the land in question, and therefore are precluded from obtaining a liquor license. Read More »

Legal Update - April 4, 2017

April 4, 2017

On March 8, 2017, the Jamul Action Committee, Jamul Community Church and several residents of Jamul, filed their Opening Brief with the Ninth Circuit challenging the District Court’s dismissal of their lawsuit last August. This summary outlines the status of the case and the context of JAC’s appeal.

The casino, known as the “Hollywood Casino-Jamul,” opened in August, 2016. It was built on four parcels of land which the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC) and the Jamul Indian Village (JIV) claim is a “reservation” eligible for gaming under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA). The casino was developed, and is operated, by Penn National Gaming which owns 26 casinos in 18 states, 12 of them called “Hollywood Casino.”

JAC initiated this lawsuit in 2013 after the NIGC, in a published notice, determined that the casino was to be “reconfigured” and located entirely on a “reservation” which qualifies as ‘Indian Lands’ eligible for gaming. Although this lawsuit was filed over three years ago, the NIGC still has not provided any documents to support its claim that the casino is on a “reservation.” The NIGC did not provide such documentation because it simply does not exist. In contrast, the title record, which JAC collected and presented to the district court, establishes that none of the four parcels, on which the Hollywood Casino is constructed is Indian Land as defined in IGRA. Read More »

Hearing Update - January 26, 2017

January 26, 2017

Many of you have asked “where are we on the ABC hearing?” Bluntly we now face yet another twist in our efforts to be heard. Many of you have received a response sent to protestants last week from the Administrative Law Judge, John W. Lewis. Many of you did not. udge Lewis carefully presided over the two day hearing, held at the Skyline Church on November 16 and 17th. We feel that Judge Lewis conducted a fair hearing and repeatedly asked very specific and probing questions of the parties that provided testimony. He made several statements including admonishing the ABC investigator concerning the lack of information in her investigation. He also questioned why there was no reference to the huge number of protestants in her report nor was such information provided in the recital of the “Whereas” clauses. Read more »

Hearing Update - November 18, 2016

November 18, 2016

On behalf of your JAC board, thank you very much for the show of support during the recent 2-day ABC hearing. We know that attending this proceeding posed a challenge to many of you. Your presence and support is greatly appreciated. Our collective presence at such proceedings no doubt has an influence on the hearing officer. YOU MATTER!!!

After two challenging days, we believe the hearing officer, Judge Lewis, appears to be a man of integrity and concern for hearing all the issues. Read more »

Legal Update - September 16, 2016

September 16, 2016

Residents of Jamul, you are amazing!!! Over 300 of you attended the September 15th community meeting! Thank you for keeping the faith that we shall prevail!

I have always said that our battle is a marathon not a sprint! Your willingness to endure the time consuming legal challenges proves that our cause is not the cause of a few disgruntled residents, rather the opposite is clear, the vast majority support the efforts to have our courts halt this nightmare permanently! Read more »

Jacob warns of dangers with casino

August 19, 2016

Apparently almost ready to open in the rural town of Jamul, the Hollywood Casino is still facing some pushback from the community. Residents say they are mostly concerned about increased traffic along the unlit, winding two-lane state Route 94 that is adjacent to the casino. County Supervisor Dianne Jacob, always outspoken regarding the $360 million casino and a Jamul resident, held a news conference at a private home Friday to address concerns. Read more »

Jamul residents stand against newly built casino

August 19, 2016

People living in Jamul made it known once again that they don't want a new casino opening up in their neighborhood. Hollywood Casino is set to open at the end of this month. Residents and community leaders are urging the state to stop the process because they say the area around the casino represents a clear and present danger. Read more »

Why Jamul casino is gambling with public’s safety

August 18, 2016

Another casino is about to open in San Diego County, but this one is asking folks to gamble with their lives. Penn National Gaming, the East Coast firm bankrolling the Hollywood Casino in Jamul, is pitching the place palace worthy of the Las Vegas Strip. Read more »

Legal Update - August 17, 2016

August 17, 2016

On August 8, 2016, the U.S. District Court dismissed JAC’s Complaint, without leave to amend. This decision came as a surprise because portions of JAC’s lawsuit are still on appeal with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The District Court lacks jurisdiction to make any substantive decisions, much less dismiss JAC’s case, while the appeal is still pending. And, because JAC’s appeal may be nearing completion, the timing of this decision is curious. JAC had urged the District Court to delay any such decision until the appeal is complete. Unfortunately, the court did not accept JAC’s suggestion. Read more »

Legal Update - June 15, 2016

June 15, 2016

On June 9, 2016, the Ninth Circuit Court affirmed the denial of a preliminary injunction requested by Plaintiffs Jamul Action Committee (JAC) and the Jamul Community Church (JCC). The denial – issued on the narrowest of grounds – was anticipated based on the Court’s questioning at the time of the hearing. Read more »

Legal Update - April 14, 2016

April 14, 2016

Over strenuous objection by the majority of speakers, including the Jamul/Dulzura Community Planning Group and Jamul Action Committee, on April 13th, the County Board of Supervisors voted three to one in favor of executing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the JIV and County of San Diego. Read more »

Legal Update - February 25, 2016

February 25, 2016

Today JAC won an important victory in the California Court of Appeal. The court ruled in FAVOR of JAC and reversed a lower court ruling that had dismissed JAC’s lawsuit against the California Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) for unlawfully facilitating JIV’s construction of its casino. Read more »

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