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The Rise of Tribes and the Fall of Federal Indian Law
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Jodi Rave: Tex Hall leaves tribe with $100M-plus debt
Monday, February 12, 2007
Filed Under: Opinion

"When a tribal government is run well, you can typically give credit to the person in charge.

The same can be said when things go badly. You can trace disorder to poor leadership and a lack of accountability.

Such has been the state of affairs among the Three Affiliated Tribes of North Dakota, home of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara.

A newly elected tribal chairman is seeking a federal audit of the $105 million debt amassed under the two terms of Tex Hall, the previous chairman.

Past leaders have served our people well. They didn't need new trucks, cell phones or massive travel budgets. Previous tribal leaders looked to the future of the tribe.

Our past, as well as our future, have been tied to a $148 million trust fund, or JTAC - Joint Tribal Advisory Committee - economic recovery fund.

The tribe received the money as compensation from the federal government after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flooded 150,000 acres of our land along the Missouri River.

Hall started to use JTAC funds as soon as he took office. He was elected in the fall of 1998. The council authorized a $3.6 million withdrawal from the fund in 1998.

By the end of 2000, $25 million was withdrawn. Between 2000 and 2004, another $41 million was withdrawn. Hall's term ended in 2006.

It's not clear where or how the money was spent, hence the pending audit."

Get the Story:
Jodi Rave: Corrupt leader damages our future (The Missoulian 2/11)

Relevant Links:
Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation - http://www.mhanation.com

Related Stories:
North Dakota tribe cites $100M-plus debt (2/9)
North Dakota tribe announces layoffs of employees (2/8)
Tex Hall still fighting loss of tribal election (1/19)
Tex Hall mulling next step in election dispute (1/11)
Tex Hall gets day in court over disputed election (12/20)
Tex Hall asks tribal court to call new election (11/30)
Tex Hall loses challenge to election results (11/20)
Tex Hall challenges results after losing election (11/16)
Tex Hall loses re-election bid at Fort Berthold (11/9)
Tex Hall facing tough campaign for re-election (10/10)
Tex Hall seeks third term as chairman of tribe (09/21)
Tex Hall faces eight challengers in chairman's race (09/05)
North Dakota tribe's refinery under scrutiny (08/23)
North Dakota tribe to host Lewis and Clark event (08/14)
Tribal members debate oil refinery on reservation (08/02)
Army Corps holds hearing on return of land to tribe (06/27)
Army Corps sets hearings on return of land to tribe (06/15)
Tribe seeks funds to complete oil refinery study (05/09)
Yellow Bird: The rising price of ... ethanol? (04/17)
BIA to hold public hearing on tribe's oil refinery (10/20)
N.D. tribe to avoid burial sites in quest for oil (03/10)
Reservation residents oppose proposed oil refinery (03/10)
N.D. tribe invests in $80 million refinery (03/14)

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