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Trust
Tribes discuss trust reform bill, Cobell settlement


Tribal leaders met at the United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck, North Dakota, to discuss the trust reform and Cobell settlement legislation.

Tex Hall, the chairman of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation, said tribes need to agree on a settlement amount for the Cobell v. Norton lawsuit. The bill that has been introduced in the Senate and in the House has been left blank.

"If this is going to move, we, as tribal leaders, have got to put a figure in this bill," Hall was quoted as saying. He suggested a figure between $13 billion -- the amount that all parties agree has passed through the Individual Indian Money trust -- and $27.5 million, the amount proposed by the Cobell plaintiffs and other groups.

The bill would also eliminate the Office of Special Trustee, create more land consolidation options and create an Indian Trust Asset Management Policy Review Commission to review trust law, policies and practices.

The next hearing on the issue takes place March 1. It is a joint hearing between the Senate Indian Affairs Committee and the House Resources Committee.

Get the Story:
Tribal leaders continue the push for trust reform (The Bismarck Tribune 1/31)
Tribal leaders seek agreement for trust-fund lawsuit (AP 1/31)

Relevant Links:
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton - http://www.indiantrust.com
Cobell v. Norton, Department of Justice - http://www.usdoj.gov/civil/cases/cobell/index.htm

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