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
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
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:
Tim Giago: Our Lakota children are dying while we wring our hands (2/20)
Mark Trahant: Indian programs gain 'high risk' label at worst time (2/20)
Native Sun News Today: 'Haven For Hope' proposed for homeless (2/20)
Ivan Star Comes Out: 'Civilization' aims to alienate Native America (2/20)
André Cramblit: Sorry but Indian Country just got 'Trumped' again (2/20)
Dina Gilio-Whitaker: Sen. Hoeven raises red flags in Indian Country (2/20)
Peter d'Errico: Indian Country's 'trustee' isn't trustworthy anymore (2/20)
Tribes find common ground with Trump on Supreme Court nominee (2/17)
Bureau of Indian Affairs issues 'trespass' notice to #NoDAPL camp (2/17)
Hearing on injunction against Dakota Access moved to February 28 (2/17)
Native Sun News Today: Drilling test in treaty territory stirs concern (2/17)
Editorial: Presidents on Mount Rushmore didn't treat tribes so well (2/17)
Native women pushing for action on missing and murdered sisters (2/16)
Army Department formally cancels Dakota Access Pipeline review (2/16)
Native Sun News Today: Dakota Access firms see spills, explosions (2/16)
James Giago Davies: Tribes face bigger threat than Dakota Access (2/16)
Cronkite News: Navajo school official worried about Trump era cuts (2/16)
Monte Mills: Tribes turn to courts to battle Dakota Access Pipeline (2/16)
Steven Newcomb: Dakota Access marks growth of imperial empire (2/16)
Vena A-dae Romero: Bringing our tribes out of obesity & diabetes (2/16)
Gyasi Ross: Native and African people share history of resistance (2/16)
Mohegan Tribe announces resignation of top gaming executive (2/16)
Jena Band of Choctaw Indians secures funding for casino hotel (2/16)
Standing Rock leader vows to 'forgive' after White House slight (2/15)
Native women host briefing on missing, murdered women & girls (2/15)
Native Sun News Today: Vic Runnels was an artist for all seasons (2/15)
Native Sun News Today: Rapid City rivals in crosstown showdown (2/15)
Freedom Socialist: Voices from water protectors at Standing Rock (2/15)
Tribal leaders hear dueling messages on Indian health in Trump era (2/14)
New leader of key House panel defends handling of Dakota Access (2/14)
Republican lawmaker renews push for Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act (2/14)
Mark Trahant: Another Native woman aims to make history at polls (2/14)
Native Sun News Today: Indian lawmakers invited to cracker barrel (2/14)
Clara Caufield: Northern Cheyenne Tribe comes together for health (2/14)
Dakota Access ready to start transporting oil sooner than expected (2/13)
More tribes join effort to halt completion of Dakota Access Pipeline (2/13)
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.