Judge to rule on dispute over Martha’s Vineyard casino plan

FILE - In this Monday, Aug. 4, 2014, file photo, the unfinished tribal community center sits on the Aquinnah Wampanoag reservation in Aquinnah, Mass., on the island of Martha's Vineyard. The state and the tribe are asking a federal judge to settle whether the tribe can turn the unfinished community center into a gambling house on the famous resort island. A hearing on the request is set for Aug. 12, 2015. (AP Photo/Philip Marcelo, File)

AQUINNAH, Mass. (AP) — The state of Massachusetts and an Indian tribe whose ancestors first inhabited Martha’s Vineyard are asking a federal judge to settle whether the tribe can build a casino on the famous resort island.

The Aquinnah Wampanoags want to turn an unfinished tribal community center on the remote, western side of Martha’s Vineyard into a high-stakes bingo hall. But the state argues that the tribe forfeited that right when it reached a settlement with Massachusetts for the land in 1983.

A federal judge plans to hear arguments Aug. 12 in Boston.

Meanwhile, some tribe members aren’t happy with the gambling plans. Among those who live on the island, many say it wouldn’t be a good fit.

The tribe has about 1,200 members, and most live on Massachusetts’ mainland.

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