Judge declines to dismiss Hobart's lawsuit vs. Oneida Nation

The Oneida Nation holds its Big Apple Fest Sept. 20, 2014. (WLUK file image)

GREEN BAY (WLUK) – A federal judge has denied the Oneida Nation’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the Village of Hobart about enforcement of the village’s special events ordinance.

Hobart issued a ticket to the Oneida Nation after it held its Apple Fest on Sept. 17, maintaining the tribe was required to have a special event permit. The tribe disagrees, arguing the village ordinance does not apply to an event on land held in federal trust.

The tribe took the issue to federal court, where it requested the ticket be dismissed. The village has filed motions in that seeking the court order the tribe to turn over information before the case would head to trial.

In a decision issued late Wednesday, federal Judge William Griesbach denied the tribe’s motion to end the case with a ruling in its favor, and said the tribe needs to turn over information on boundaries and other issues to the village.

“The blanket stay of discovery requested by the Nation will tactically disadvantage the Village because it prevents the Village from effectively responding to the Nation’s motion for summary judgment or presenting its case. Rather than render a decision based on a less than complete record, the court finds that village is entitled to a reasonable opportunity to discover and present all evidence pertinent to the Nation’s challenge to enforcement of its Special Event Permit Ordinance and the Village’s defense thereof,” the judge wrote.

No trial date has been set.

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