"TOPEKA, Kan. — A northeast Kansas Indian tribe will have only limited
involvement in a lawsuit challenging the state’s new gambling law, a
judge ruled Thursday.
The Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation sought to intervene in the “friendly” lawsuit, filed by Attorney General Paul Morrison to resolve legal questions surrounding the law quickly and permit a more rapid expansion of gambling.
The law permits state-owned casinos in four areas and slot machines at dog and horse tracks. The Potawatomi tribe operates a casino on its reservation north of Topeka, and the state-owned gambling represents potential competition.
Shawnee County District Judge Charles Andrews limited the tribe to filing written, “friend of the court” arguments in the case. If Andrews had allowed the tribe to intervene, its attorneys would have been allowed to argue their points and question witnesses during court hearings.
The ruling prevents the tribe from becoming “an independent player” in the case, said Morrison spokeswoman Ashley Anstaett. Morrison opposed the tribe’s request to intervene."