BJA Tribal Leader Consultation Announcement

The Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice Invites Tribal Leaders to Consult on Strengthening Public Safety and Law Enforcement to Address Violent Crime in Tribal Communities and Native Villages

The goal of the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) annual consultation with tribal leaders and tribal designees is to identify criminal justice policy issues and tribal priorities to support tribal justice strategies to achieve safer communities. The ultimate goals are to improve law enforcement and public safety in tribal communities and native villages; and support grant administration and criminal justice policy development to support local, state, and tribal law enforcement in achieving safer communities.

The BJA Tribal Consultation Program includes two sessions. They are:

Date: Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Time: 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. ET

The BJA will provide information on tribal justice funding and programs; and preview questions that will be posed during the upcoming Tribal Consultation Virtual Session on September 15th.   To register, click here.

Date: Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Time: 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. ET

During this session, BJA will hear from tribal leaders and stakeholders to help inform how BJA tribal assistance funds and programs can best support Tribal and Native communities.  Focus areas will include: comprehensive justice system planning; tribal justice facilities; court system enhancements; alcohol and substance abuse programs; civil and criminal legal assistance; alternatives to incarceration; addressing violent crime in Native communities; and other priorities.

By identifying and clarifying those priorities, the session will result in more efficient delivery of needed grant funding, and in turn enhanced safety and security in tribal communities and native villages.  This session will include a facilitated question-and-answer session for tribal leadership.  To register, click here.

Tribal Leaders are invited to both sessions. Other tribal stakeholders are also invited to participate including tribal justice practitioners, grantees, evaluators/researchers, statisticians, tribal organizations, nonprofit organizations working on tribal issues, and representatives of tribal, federal, state, and local governments working on public safety in tribal communities and native villages.

A framing paper has been developed to help guide tribes as they consider and provide their positions during the virtual session and is available online at the BJA Tribal Consultation webpage.

The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), a component of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs supports tribal governments in addressing their public safety needs. In addition to providing grants to tribal governments to support public safety efforts, BJA provides training and technical assistance (TTA) to tribal governments and supports implementation of evidence- and research-based practices.

Minnesota Bankruptcy Court Holds Pokagon Potawatomi Gaming Per Capita Payments are Not Part of Debtor’s Estate

Here are the materials in In re Musel (D. Minn. Bkrcy.):

10 Motion to Turnover

14 Response

22 Trustee Brief

23 Debtor Brief

25 Memorandum Decision and Order

An excerpt:

The Pokagon Band followed all of the requirements outlined in IGRA – a federal statute – to achieve federal approval for its Gaming Revenue Allocation Plan. Once that RAP was approved, the Band’s sovereignty ensured that it became the sole and exclusive authority for creating and defining property rights for payments it authorized. The RAP’s plain language prevented the creation of any vested property right or interest, and any intangible right to payment was unique to the individual tribal member. As a consequence, the debtor had no property interests that would be considered property of the estate under § 541(a). Additionally, even outside of the Pokagon Band’s sovereign authority to create and define property rights, the per capita payments are not property of the estate in policy, logic, or equity.

Oral Argument in Colorado Supreme Court Case [ICWA]


Colorado Gazette article on the case here.

Write up by MSU on the case here

When the Logan County, Colorado Department of Human Services removed two infant twin girls from the custody of their mother, the mother told the department that their father might have Chickasaw heritage. The department sent notice to the Chickasaw Nation, which responded that the children were eligible for citizenship and sent the necessary tribal citizenship forms to the department.

The Chickasaw Nation never got those forms back.

To all appearances, the agency simply ignored the notice from the Chickasaw Nation, and the Nation received no communication from the State. The State filed to terminate the mother’s parental rights and only at that point did Logan County disclose to the juvenile court that the children were eligible for enrollment in the Chickasaw Nation.

Federal Court Dismisses Muscogee (Creek) Nation Suit against Poarch Band Creek over Hickory Ground

Here are the materials in Muscogee (Creek) Nation v. Poarch Band of Creek Indians (M.D. Ala.):

190 Second Amended Complaint

200 Federal Motion to Dismiss

202 Tribal Defendants Motion to Dismiss

205 Individual Defendants Motion to Dismiss

210 Response to 200

211 Response to to 205

212 Response to 202

216 Reply in Support of 200

217 Reply in Support of 202

218 Reply in Support o 205

223 DCT Order

Prior posts here.

Materials in Suit against Caesars [Rincon Band]

Here are the materials so far in Pilant v. Caesars Entertainment Services Inc. (S.D. Cal.):

1 Notice of Removal

1-5 Complaint

3-1 Motion to Dismiss

4 Response

5 Reply

6 DCT Order

An excerpt:

This matter is before the Court on a motion by specially appearing Defendants Caesars Enterprise Services, LLC (“CES”) and Caesars Entertainment, Inc. (“CEI”) to dismiss the complaint for failure to join an indispensable party and for lack of personal jurisdiction. The motion has been fully briefed, and the Courtdeems it suitable for submission without oral argument. As discussed below, the motion to dismiss for failure to join an indispensable party is denied and the motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction is granted in part and denied in part.

Crosscut Article on Greer Case


ICWA was thereafter applied to the case, but the damage was done — the children were placed in foster care without the normal protections the law would have offered them. Now, the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska are challenging the decision in the Washington State Supreme Court. If the court’s decision is upheld, advocates say the case could significantly weaken the use of ICWA in Washington by raising the bar for what qualifies as a “reason to know” that a child is “Indian” in the eyes of the law.

Kathryn Fort, director of Michigan State’s Indian Law Clinic, who is arguing on behalf of the tribes in the case involving Greer and Graham, says that it shouldn’t be so difficult. The burden of checking in with a tribe is low, she says, but the outcome has immense implications for the family, children and tribe.

Briefing and oral arguments here.