Yakama Nation judge blocks tobacco compact

A judge for the Yakama Nation has blocked the tribe's tobacco compact with the state of Washington until tribal members can vote on it.

The temporary restraining order was issued in a case filed by Kip Richard Ramsey, who owns a smoke shop on the reservation. He says the compact violates the tribe's 1855 treaty and a recent 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision that favored the treaty.

Tribal leaders signed the compact last December. The requires the tribe to slowly raise its tobacco tax to a rate comparable, but lower, to the state's rate.

As the tribe debates the issue, state lawmakers are considering a bill to force compliance with the compact.

Get the Story:
Yakama tribal members may take vote on cigarette tax (The Yakima Herald-Republic 2/5)

Treaty Decision:
US v. Smiskin (May 18, 2007)

Related Stories:
Yakama Nation sued over tobacco tax compact (01/17)
Editorial: Yakama cigarette deal good for all (12/19)
Yakama treaty protects smokeshop owners from prosecution (5/21)
State to terminate Yakama cigarette compact (2/9)
Judge hears case against tribal tobacco retailers (11/15)
Court to hear Yakama tobacco smuggling case (10/17)
Court: Tribal members must pay federal tax (9/12)