Historic Settlement Agreement Approved

Oneida County Board Legislators ratified the settlement 16-13

On May 28th the Oneida County Board of Legislators ratified the Historic settlement between the State of New York, Oneida County, Madison County and the Oneida Indian Nation. The agreement was passed in a special section by a vote of 16-13. The agreement will now be considered by the Madison County Board of Supervisors, and eventually will be sent to the NYS Senate and Assembly for their passage.

County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. said “Today is an historic day. Together we have put behind this community the divisiveness that has been a constant barrier to progress. I want to thank this Board for voting for an investment in the future of our community. This settlement ends litigation and creates a lasting partnership between the County, State and the largest employer in our region, the Oneida Indian Nation.”

The terms of the settlement provide for:

  • An end to all litigation between the Oneida Nation and Oneida County, the State of New York and Madison County. 
  • A hard cap of 17,000 acres of land that the Oneida Indian Nation can place into federal trust
  • It provides a sharing of gaming revenue to the State of New York, and to Oneida County that today is estimated to be $12.5 million annually.
  • It satisfies the tax liens on land being put into trust and pays Oneida County $48 million over 19 ¼ years in annual payments of $2.5 million.

County Executive Picente went on to say “I want to congratulate Governor Andrew Cuomo, Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter and the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors of Madison County John Becker for working to settle these differences and moving all of into a new era of cooperation.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo released the following statement about the decision:

“I commend the Oneida County Legislature for voting to approve the agreement with the Oneida Indian Nation. This compact treats all parties with fairness and respect, provides the county and the state with a consistent source of revenue for the future and gives the Oneida Nation financial security. By working together, we put to an end the decades of litigation and vitriol that have previously strained relations between the Oneidas, its neighbors and the State of New York, and took a huge step toward shared prosperity.”

The full agreement can be seen here:

http://www.ocgov.net/sites/default/files/exec/2013/OneidaNationAgreement.pdf