News Coverage of Frank Pommersheim Talk on Tribal-State Relations in South Dakota

Here is “Tribal-state relations improved, not healed.”

An excerpt:

Billy Mercer of Sioux Falls, who was among those attending Sunday’s forum, said the forum gave him a firm understanding of what happened during statehood at the county level.

He also took a moment to ask whether the mayor or any of the legislative candidates were attending the meeting.

He found out there were none and said that disappointed him.

“Nobody was here on the political level,” Mercer said. “They are quick to point out a park where alcoholic Native Americans are hanging out, but when you have people here who are Native American trying to discuss things, on a functional level, they’re not here. That’s discrimination.”

Michigan Supreme Court Issues Order to Create Tribal-State Forum

Order here.

The Michigan Tribal State Federal Judicial Forum is established. The membership of the forum shall consist of: the chief tribal judge of each of Michigan’s 12 federally recognized tribes, or their designated alternate judges, with membership to be expanded to accommodate any new federally recognized tribes; and 12 state court judges (or the same number as there are tribal judges), who will be appointed by the Michigan Supreme Court from among a pool of currently serving or retired Michigan judges or justices. In making appointments, the Court will consider geographic proximity to the tribes, Indian Child Welfare Act and MIFPA case load dockets, and current involvement with tribal court relations. The forum shall then pursue participation from federal judges and officials.

State bar post here.

King County Bar Bulletin Commentary on Tribal-State Relations

Here, from Gabe Galanda:

Washington Tribal-State Relations Bar Bulletin

An excerpt:

Washington tribal/state relations and the new political relationship between our state’s sovereigns are indeed evolving.  Still, based on the Washington Supreme Court’s three most recent three Indian law decisions, more progress is required to achieve tribal/state congruity throughout official state policy.  In particular, the increasingly cooperative relationship between the Tribes and State must be better appreciated when the Court next evaluates regulatory power or adjudicatory jurisdiction in Washington Indian Country.

TLIP Launches Enhanced Walking on Common Ground Website

The Tribal Law and Policy Institute is pleased to announce the launch of the enhanced & updated Walking on Common Ground web resource at:

We are planning to mirror much of the tribal and state information through the enhanced website that we are developing.

The primary focus of the website is:

  • Identify and develop resources concerning tribal/state court collaboration & promising practices
  • Identify and develop resources concerning Public Law 280 tribal/state court collaboration & promising practices
  • Subject areas include: courts, law enforcement, detention, child welfare, and multi-agency agreements

Features of the website include:

  • Tribal-State agreements by topic
  • Tribal-Federal Collaborations
  • Promising Practices stories and quotes
  • Resources on the TLOA
  • Interactive searchable map of agreements
  • Listing of all federally recognized tribes, tribal websites and counties, by state
  • Jurisdictional information

Upcoming features include:

  • Tribal-State Court Promising Strategies Publication
  • Public Law 280 Promising Strategies Publication
  • Additional tribal-state collaborations in the area of Detention and Child Welfare
  • Additional tribal-federal collaborations

Send us your examples of collaborations to highlight!  Contact Heather Valdez Singleton for more information:;  323-650-5667

This website was funded under the support of the Bureau of Justice Assistance, USDOJ.

Judicial Symposium for Michigan-Wisconsin-Minnesota Tribal-State-Federal Judges

The conference is Oct. 12-13, 2010, at the Grand Traverse Resort just outside of Traverse City, Michigan. Come see the colors!!!!

Here is the flyer: Flyer and Agenda.

The speakers include Walter Echo-Hawk, Hon. Korey Wahwassuck, and Hon. David Rausch.

And on the evening of October 11, Walter will be reading from his book at Horizon Books.

Intergovernmental Relations Developing in Cal. as a Result of Gaming

From here, via Pechanga:

Landmark intergovernmental agreements between California’s small and once impoverished American Indian communities and surrounding cities and counties are playing a crucial role in the growth of the nation’s largest tribal casino market.

But the agreements, intended to mitigate the impact of casinos and economic growth on sovereign Indian land held in trust by the federal government, are not without controversy.

Combined with a recent federal court ruling on the legality of tribes sharing casino revenue with the state, they muddle the future of California’s $7.3bn gambling industry.

“The whole nature of tribal, state and local government relations in California, as far as sharing revenues and mitigating the impacts of gaming, is being thrown up for grabs,” observes Nikki Symington, a consultant for the Rincon Band of Luiseno Indians, a small community near San Diego. “I don’t know that there is any happy solution down the road.”

The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act intended that non-Indian use of gambling revenue be largely restricted to regulatory oversight, problem gambling and other casino impacts.

Many of the fifty-seven California tribes that signed model 1999 tribal-state agreements, or compacts, allowing them to operate casinos voluntarily entered into local intergovernmental agreements and paid into a special distribution fund for traffic, public safety and other local impacts.

There are 107 federally recognize

d tribes in California, more than any state. Until casino gambling most were small, impoverished communities lacking roads, adequate utilities and with no history of government and political relations with the state, counties and municipalities.

“Our communities have been here a long, long time. But for 200 years we have been largely invisible, politically disenfranchised and isolated by poverty and neglect,” Anthony Pico, a citizen of the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians, told a November 2007 meeting of the San Diego Association of Governments. “Gaming changed all that. We are trying to do what it has taken our neighboring counties and municipalities several generations to accomplish.”

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