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Inhofe defends tribal environmental rider
Thursday, August 18, 2005

A spokesperson for Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) said a rider restricting the environmental rights of Oklahoma tribes is needed because "Oklahoma is unique," The Native American Times reports.

At the last minute, Inhofe inserted language in the $286 billion transportation bill that blocks the Environmental Protection Agency from recognizing the sovereignty of Oklahoma tribes without the state's approval. No other tribe in the nation has to meet this requirement.

Inhofe added the rider without alerting the state or the EPA, or consulting other lawmakers, according to news reports. The spokesperson said it is needed to prevent lawsuits but the state, prior to the rider, had already sued the EPA for recognizing the Pawnee Nation's authority.

Get the Story:
Inhofe spokesman defends transportation rider (The Native American Times 8/17)

Highway Transportation Act:
H.R.3 | Conference Report

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Rider against Oklahoma tribes blamed on Inhofe (8/9)
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EPA case on tribal sovereignty attracts attention (06/07)
Oklahoma challenges EPA on tribal sovereignty (05/02)
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EPA rulings worry tribal, state officials in Oklahoma (07/26)
Tribal authority challenge denied (6/4)
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