By Steve Elliott
Tourists in South Dakota may soon be able to go to a Native American reservation, buy a joint of marijuana for $10 to $15, then try their luck at the nearby casino.
The Flandreau Santee Sioux expect in December to become the first tribe in the nation to grow and sell cannabis for recreational use, taking the Obama Administration at its word when it says all 566 federally approved Indian tribes are free to enter the marijuana industry, reports Rob Hotakainen in the Bellingham Herald.
"The fact that we are first doesn't scare us," said tribal president Anthony "Tony" Reider, 38, leader of the tribe for almost five years now. "The Department of Justice gave us the go-ahead, similar to what they did with the states, so we're comfortable going with it."
Sixy strains of marijuana will be available from the tribe, according to Reider, who is hoping for hordes of visitors. He predicted that sales could bring in $2 million per month.
"Obviously, when you launch a business, you're hoping to sell all the product and have a shortage, like Colorado did when they first opened," he said.
But other tribes haven't been as gung-ho about cannabis. "Look at Washington state, where marijuana's completely legal as a matter of state law everywhere, and you still have tribes adhering to their prohibition policies," said Robert Odawi Porter, former president of New York's Seneca Nation.