Leelanau Ticker: David Arroyo, Grand Traverse Band’s New Chairman Shares His Vision

On August 14, the Suttons Bay resident was sworn in as the new chairman of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians (GTB), following an election process that was delayed months due to COVID-19. Arroyo, who has served as a member of the seven-seat GTB Tribal Council since 2004, is taking on leadership of the tribe just as it enters its fifth decade as a federally recognized sovereign nation. The Leelanau Ticker caught up with Arroyo to learn about his first two months in office, his goals for the future, and more.

Full article here.

Record Eagle: Watershed moment for FishPass

TRAVERSE CITY — Construction for FishPass hasn’t started just yet, but Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians and other project partners celebrated the project’s start.

Saturday’s event kicked off with Peshawbestown Community Drum performing, and a water ceremony by JoAnne Cook, Tina Frankenberger and Melissa Wiatrolik. The three women, each donning colorful skirts, prayed as they held copper vessels filled with water, then sang a song expressing thanks to the water.

Article here.

Enbridge Line 5: Michigan Public Service Commission Litigation

See below for 1) Applicant Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership’s Limited Objections to the Notice of Intervention of the Attorney General; (2) Applicant Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership’s Limited Objections to the Petitions to Intervene Filed by The Bay Mills Indian Community, The Grand Traverse Band Of Ottawa And Chippewa Indians, Little Traverse Bay Bands Of Odawa Indians, and Notttawaseppi Huron Band Of The Pottawatomi; (3) Applicant Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership’s Objections to the Petitions to Intervene Filed by The Michigan Environmental Council, Tip Of The Mitt Watershed Council, The National Wildlife Federation, For Love Of Water, The Environmental Law & Policy Center, And Michigan Climate Action Network and Certificate of Service.

A pre-hearing was scheduled Wednesday August 12, 2020 at 1:00PM. Petitions to intervene from Bay Mills Indian Community, Grand Traverse Band, Little Traverse Bay Bands, and Nottawaseppi Huron Band below. In addition, the Attorney General is now intervening in the proceedings and Enbridge has asked for a rehearing which is also below.

Other Line 5 posts here.

New Fletcher Paper: “The Rise and Fall of the Ogemakaan”

Please check out my new paper, “The Rise and Fall of the Ogemakaan,” now available on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Anishinaabe (Odawa, Bodewadmi, and Ojibwe) legal and political philosophy is buried under the infrastructure of modern self-determination law and policy. Modern Anishinaabe tribes are rough copies of American governments. The Anishinaabeg (people) usually choose their ogemaag (leaders) through an at-large election process that infects tribal politics with individualized self-interest. Those elected leaders, what I call ogemaakaan (artificial leaders) preside over modern governments that encourage hierarchy, political opportunism, and tyranny of the majority. While modern tribal governments are extraordinary successes compared to the era of total federal control, a significant number of tribes face intractable political disputes that can traced to the philosophical disconnect from culture and tradition.

Anishinaabe philosophy prioritizes ogemaag who are deferential and serve as leaders only for limited purposes and times. Ogemaag are true representatives who act only when and how instructed to do so by their constituents. Their decisions are rooted in cultural and traditional philosophies, including for example Mino-Bimaadiziwin (the act of living a good life), Inawendewin (relational accountability), Niizhwaaswii Mishomis/Nokomis Kinoomaagewinawaan (the Seven Gifts the Grandfathers or Grandmothers), and the Dodemaag (clans). I offer suggestions on how modern tribal government structures can be lightly modified to restore much of this philosophy.