Patchak V. Salazar — An Important Fee-To-Trust Opinion

Law360, New York (January 5, 2012, 1:08 PM EST) -- On Dec. 12, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court granted the petitions of the Secretary of the Interior and the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians (the Tribe) to review the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decision in Patchak v. Salazar, 632 F.3d 702 (D.C. Cir. 2011). The Secretary, pursuant to his authority under the Indian Reorganization Act (IRA), had accepted 147 acres of fee land in Wayland Township, Mich., into trust on behalf of the Tribe in 2009 for gaming purposes.

Patchak, a neighboring land owner, sued under the Administrative Procedures Act, challenging the Secretary's decision on the ground that the Tribe...

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