indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Dynamic Homes
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines

printer friendly version
Supreme Court takes action on Indian law cases
Tuesday, November 2, 2004

The U.S. Supreme Court refused another Indian law case on Monday, this one dealing with the diminishment of the Mille Lacs Ojibwe Reservation in Minnesota.

Without comment, the justices rejected an appeal sought by Mille Lacs County and a private bank. The two parties have spent more than $1 million in taxpayer funds on a lawsuit claiming that the reservation no longer exists.

In March of this year, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed the case. The court said the county and the bank lacked standing because they couldn't show how they were affected by the size of the reservation or the tribe's activities on the reservation.

"Neither the county nor the bank has shown that it is in immediate danger of sustaining threatened injury traceable to an action of the band," Judge Lavenski R. Smith wrote in the unanimous decision.

The court, however, did not decide whether the reservation exists. The county and the bank say the tribe relinquished 61,000 acres in the early 1900s.

That question could be considered in a future case, the court said, provided the county and the bank can show they are being harmed by the tribe's actions. Tribal leaders remain hopeful they can work with the county.

Mille Lacs v. Benjamin is the second major Indian law case the Supreme Court has rejected since returning to session last month. On October 18, the justices refused a case from South Dakota testing the reach of state jurisdiction in Indian Country.

South Dakota attorney general Larry Long had asked the court to allow states to go onto reservations to investigate alleged criminal activity. But the South Dakota Supreme Court said the state needs a warrant or permission from a tribal government.

Long submitted an amicus brief in Mille Lacs and supported the county's case, citing a Supreme court ruling that diminished the size of the Yankton Sioux Reservation. Separately, he is fighting the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe's attempt to reclaim land within its former reservation.

In a separate action on Monday, the high court agreed to allow the state of New York and the Department of Justice to participate in Oneida Indian Nation v. City of Sherrill. Oral arguments have not been set in the case, which centers on whether land the tribe purchases in its treaty area is Indian Country.

The Department of Justice is siding with the tribe, whose lands have been threatened with foreclosure for not paying property taxes to Sherrill. Two counties and the state are backing the city. The tribe is supported by the National Congress of American Indians, the United South and Eastern Tribes and several tribes.

Next Tuesday, the high court will hear a dispute over contract support costs in self-determination contracts. The Cherokee Nation and other tribes are suing the Department of Health and Human Services for failing to pay 100 percent of support costs.

Tribal leaders say the practice is discriminatory because the government fully funds all other types of contracts. A bill is pending in Congress to correct the disparity.

Mille Lacs v. Benjamin:
Supreme Court Docket Sheet | Decision in Mille Lacs v. Benjamin (March 9, 2004) | Denial of Rehearing (May 19, 2004) | Audio of Oral Arguments (October 24, 2003)

Oneida Indian Nation v. City of Sherrill:
Majority Opinion | Van Graafeiland Dissent | Briefs | Docket Sheet No. 03-855

Cherokee Nation:
Fed Circuit: Thompson v. Cherokee Nation | 10th Circuit: Cherokee Nation v. Thompson | Docket Sheet No. 03-853: Thompson v. Cherokee Nation | Docket Sheet No. 02-1472: Cherokee Nation v. Thompson | Department of Justice Petition No. 03-853 | Department of Justice Supplemental Brief No. 02-1472

Relevant Links:
NARF-NCAI Tribal Supreme Court Project - http://doc.narf.org/sc/index.html

Related Stories:
Mille Lacs diminishment case before Supreme Court (10/22)
South Dakota challenge to tribes rejected by high court (10/19)
Tribes file briefs in Oneida Nation land case (10/18)
Court won't rehear challenge to tribal land base (05/21)
Supreme Court to resolve self-determination dispute (03/23)
Minn. tribe wins another round in reservation dispute (03/10)
Supreme Court weighs self-determination dispute (03/09)

Copyright 2000-2004 Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Indigenous activists reclaim nation's capital in defiance of Trump (4/28)
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe ends appeal in Dakota Access lawsuit (4/28)
Ute Tribe demands 'voice' as Trump orders review of Bears Ears (4/28)
Senate panel takes up bill to bring AMBER Alert funding to tribes (4/28)
Gun Lake Tribe prepares for grand opening of casino expansion (4/28)
Arne Vainio: We lost a fluent Ojibwe speaker in Larry Smallwood (4/28)
Native Sun News Today: Runners from Standing Rock head to Ohio (4/28)
James Giago Davies: People tell me it's better to read about pets (4/28)
Harold Monteau: Supreme Court stirs smelly pot of fish head stew (4/28)
Steven Newcomb: 'Picking Fights' book is a must-read for Natives (4/28)
Whiteclay liquor stores must close temporarily amid court battle (4/28)
Disputed leaders of Nooksack Tribe hit by Supreme Court decision (4/27)
Indigenous activists make presence known for climate march in DC (4/27)
Interior Department announces $5.7M in tribal preservation grants (4/27)
Mark Trahant: Senate candidate cites Standing Rock as 'awakening' (4/27)
Native Sun News Today: Battle over Whiteclay liquor just beginning (4/27)
Ivan Star Comes Out: Why are we still dealing with racism today? (4/27)
Albert Bender: Navajo family still waiting on justice for loved one (4/27)
Whiteclay liquor stores win surprise court ruling on liquor licenses (4/27)
Dakota Access firm faces fines for two spills of drilling fluid in Ohio (4/27)
Gathering of Nations gets ready for annual powwow in new venue (4/27)
Secretary Zinke lacks leadership team more than a month into job (4/27)
Republicans seek to avoid shutdown with temporary spending bill (4/27)
Supreme Court ruling seen as benefit to casino bus crash lawsuit (4/27)
Mashantucket Tribe charges off-duty officer for assault at casino (4/27)
Trump singles out Bears Ears as an 'abuse' of government's power (4/26)
Doug George-Kanentiio: Let's call Columbus by what he truly was (4/26)
Native Sun News Today: Lakota youth set up beekeeping business (4/26)
Cronkite News: Trump seeks to hire thousands of border officers (4/26)
Doug Pibel: New film teaches us about value of indigenous seeds (4/26)
Jenn Weddle: 'Best possible result' from court in sovereignty case (4/26)
Peter d'Errico: Oneida architect offers indigenous approach to law (4/26)
Whiteclay liquor stores aim to stay open pending fight for licenses (4/26)
Support for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe leads to recall in Alaska city (4/26)
Mishewal Wappo Tribe loses appeal in federal recognition lawsuit (4/26)
Police use tear gas & rubber bullets at indigenous protest in Brazil (4/26)
Mohegan Tribe wants gaming disputes resolved in judicial system (4/26)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.