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Connecticut News

Secretary Zinke's Legal Troubles Include Block Of Third Conn. Casino

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Cliff Owen
/
AP
Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke speaks after an order withdrawing federal protections for countless waterways and wetland was signed at EPA headquarters. Trump said on Saturday that Zinke will be leaving the administration at the end of the year.

Outgoing Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke has been embroiled in federal investigations. Among them – a look into his decision to block Connecticut’s two federally recognized tribes from opening a new casino in East Windsor.

Some of Zinke’s moves have drawn national attention. He pushed for a massive reduction in federally protected lands, including more than a million acres in Utah’s Bear Ears National Monument.

Zinke’s Interior Department also blocked a years-long effort by the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes to open a casino to compete with the new MGM Springfield casino in Springfield, Mass.

That move is being investigated by the department’s inspector general. The New York Times reported last month the decision was made against advice from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and after meetings with MGM lobbyists.