A model of the development has already been built inside a Plexiglas case in the current Lytton Rancheria building. Mejia exhibits the model proudly, using a manicured finger to point out the tribal office, the community center, and the "round house" for religious events that will be built on the land.
She says the first homes to be constructed will go to the elders, whose numbers are dwindling. Too many homeless tribal members have slept in cars, under highway overpasses, and in the Santa Rosa office, she says.
"My tribe truly, truly believes we were wronged 40 years ago," Mejia says. "We believe in the circle of life, that what you give out will come back. And if you are honest, then that's what you can expect to come back."
She presses her hands against the case.
"The public thinks we're only working on the casino, but the nine acres in San Pablo will provide the 50 acres in Sonoma for housing," Mejia says. "People ask me, "Why gaming?' and I say, "Well, give us back the soil with the grapevines on it and we wouldn't need gaming.'"