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Arizona court rules for tribe on annexation issue

A state appeals court has overturned the city of Glendale’s annexation of land that includes part of the site of a casino resort planned in the Phoenix area by a southern Arizona Indian tribe, the Tohono O’odham Nation.

A trial judge had ruled in favor of Glendale, upholding the city’s position that the annexation of the property in 2001 automatically took effect 30 days after it was approved.

But a Court of Appeals panel ruled that the annexation never became official because a challenge was filed against it and then the city itself repealed the annexation before the case went to court.

The annexation question matters because tribal casinos are now allowed inside incorporated municipalities.

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