Current Weather
The Spy FM

Federal Government To Pay Indian Tribes $1 Billion Over Mismanagement

Filed by KOSU News in US News.
April 12, 2012

The U.S. government will pay more than $1 billion to settle lawsuits filed by 41 American Indian tribes, who had accused federal agencies of mismanaging tribal money and resources.

The agreement ends nearly two years of negotiations between the tribes and the federal government. But the disputes that they cover go back even further.

According to a Justice Department release, the “settlements resolve claims dating back more than 100 years and will bring to an end protracted litigation that has burdened both the plaintiffs and the United States.”

Officials from the Justice Department, some of the tribes, and the Interior Department announced the deal Wednesday.

The Department of the Interior “manages almost 56 million acres of trust lands for federally-recognized tribes and more than 100,000 leases on those lands for various uses, including housing, timber harvesting, farming, grazing, oil and gas extraction, business leasing, rights-of-way and easements,” according the government.

The Interior “also manages about 2,500 tribal trust accounts for more than 250 tribes,” according to the release.

The Indian Country Today Media Network cites Justice Department spokesman Wyn Hornbuckle as saying that the Obama administration did not have to seek approval for the settlement money from Congress, because it will come out of the United States’ Judgment Fund.

Indian Country Today quoted Gary Hayes, chairman of the Ute Mountain Tribe, as saying, “The seeds that we plant today will profit us in the future…. These agreements mark a new beginning, one of just reconciliation, better communication… and strengthened management.”

The full list of tribes that are involved in the $1.023 billion settlement is posted on the Justice Department website.

Back in 2009, the federal government settled similar disputes for an estimated $3.4 billion, in a class-action lawsuit that also concerned mismanagement of American Indian trust accounts and land. [Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

Leave a Reply

9PM to 5AM The Spy

The Spy

An eclectic mix of the Spy's library of more than 10,000 songs curated by Ferris O'Brien.

Listen Live Now!

5AM to 9AM Morning Edition

Morning Edition

For more than two decades, NPR's Morning Edition has prepared listeners for the day ahead with two hours of up-to-the-minute news, background analysis, commentary, and coverage of arts and sports.

View the program guide!

9AM to 10AM The Takeaway

The Takeaway

A fresh alternative in morning news, "The Takeaway" provides a breadth and depth of world, national and regional news coverage that is unprecedented in public media.

View the program guide!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center