Menominee Consider Growing Marijuana

KESHENA, Wis. (WFRV) – Governor Walker’s rejection of the proposed Kenosha casino has the Menominee Tribe is exploring new ways to make money.

They’re considering growing marijuana on the reservation.

Local 5’s Cole Higgins spoke with the chairman on Monday, who says it’s just one of many options.

Menominee Tribe Chairman, Gary Besaw, says the tribe’s off-reservation casino project is not dead yet.

“In our minds, the Kenosha project is not entirely dead,” says Chairman Besaw. But, because Governor Walker did reject the tribe’s project proposal, the Menominee are heading back to the drawing board and are discussing other possible ways to generate revenue.

“We do not have the luxury, as I said before, to turn away any potential revenue source, ” says Chairman Besaw.

One potential revenue source the tribe may be discussing, is growing marijuana on the reservation.

Tribal legislator Craig Corn, used his personal twitter account to announce that option on Friday, tweeting: “Now we embark on a new economic endeavor, it is time to progress forward. we are going to fast track an effort to legalize marijuana.”

“Everything’s still too soon to say,” Chairman Besaw explains. Chairman Besaw, the tribe’s only official spokesperson, emphasizes that the tribe is in the early stages of looking at all of their potential options.

After Corn’s initial posts he later bolstered Besaw’s thoughts, writing: “we are not legalizing marijuana, since governor walker did what he did to us, we need to look at all options.”

While marijuana is not legal in Wisconsin, it still doesn’t mean growing marijuana on the reservation is not a viable option.

Last year the United States Department of Justice told federal prosecutors not to prevent tribes from growing or selling pot on their reservations, even in states that ban it.

Chairman Besaw says the tribe isn’t revealing any other revenue options right now, because they don’t want to lose their edge in a competitive market.

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