Law

Yakama Nation seeks to retake authority from Washington





The Yakama Nation is set to reclaim authority from the state of Washington after more than 50 years of living under Public Law 280.

The state assumed criminal and civil jurisdiction on the reservation in 1963. But that's set to change once the Department of Justice approves a petition that the tribe secured under a new state law.

“The biggest benefit is that we have the right to determine our own destiny and our own laws,” Chairman Harry Smiskin told The Yakima Herald-Republic.

DOJ approval is expected to take a year, Smiskin said. The state will continue to retain authority over mental illness cases and civil commitment of sexually violent predators.

Get the Story:
Yakamas to regain full authority on tribal land (The Yakima Herald-Republic 1/18)
Proclamation aims to give some legal control to Yakama Nation (KIMA 1/17)