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Clark County settles federal lawsuit tied to Walters golf course for $10M

Updated August 15, 2023 - 6:24 pm

Clark County will pay $10 million to the federal government after officials voted to approve the settlement Tuesday.

The County Commission voted Tuesday to approve a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice settling a 2017 lawsuit against the county for leasing land for less than its market value.

The commission agreed to the settlement in order to “avoid the delay, uncertainty and expense of litigation,” according to the agreement.

The DOJ first filed the lawsuit in September 2017, alleging Clark County had leased a parcel of Bureau of Land Management-owned land to a golf course management company for far below its fair market value in violation of the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act.

That company, Nevada Links, will also pay $1.5 million as part of the agreement.

According to a letter the DOJ sent prior to the lawsuit, a 2011 amendment to the lease made by the county and gambler Billy Walters that set the property’s annual rent at $100,000 violated the law.

The DOJ also demanded the county pay $75.5 million in underpaid rent for the Bali Hai Golf Club site in the letter, which was sent in August 2017.

The settlement also resolves the claims without the county or Nevada Links admitting liability.

The U.S. attorney’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

Contact Taylor R. Avery at TAvery@reviewjournal.com. Follow @travery98 on X.

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