Assemblywoman calls proposed settlement with the Oneida Indian Nation a rotten deal

The Assembly member representing parts of Oswego and Oneida Counties is blasting the proposed settlement between Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Oneida Indian Nation.

In an article appearing in the New York Post Wednesday, Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney referred to it as a "rotten deal with the 'Casino Oneidas.'"

Tenney accuses Governor Cuomo of trying to "ram through his deal" by "using threats to push county Legislatures to approve it."

The article appears on the eve of a vote by the Madison County Board of Supervisors to approve the settlement.

The Oneida County Legislature voted to approve the deal Tuesday night. Speaking to CNYcentral's Jim Kenyon, Assemblywoman Tenney said, "I would call it the greatest, most corrupt thing I have seen in my 2 to 3 years in the Legislature... An extortionary way to force people into a settlement. You take this or leave this. It is unprecedented."

Tenney says the settlement gives up 20 years of litigation and does not call for the collection of back taxes on Oneida Nation property nor does it allow the state to collect retail taxes.

The agreement announced 2 weeks ago guarantees the Oneidas exclusive territory for the Turning Stone Casino in exchange for revenue payments to New York State of around $50 million annually. It would also settle long-standing tax and land claim issues between the Oneidas, New York State, Madison & Oneida Counties.

Once the county Legislatures approve the deal, it would then be up to the NYS Legislature to go along. Tenney says she will try to convince her fellow legislators to oppose the deal.