Lumbee group urges chairman to kill recognition contract
Members of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina want Chairman Purnell Swett to veto a controversial lobbying contract.

The Lumbee Sovereignty Coalition says the contract with Lewin International will end the tribe's chances for federal recognition. The deal includes pro-gaming language even though a bill in Congress bars the tribe from engaging in gaming under state or federal law.

"The bottom line is this contract will prevent us from getting federal recognition," said Beth Jacobs, a founder of the Lumbee Sovereignty Coalition, The Fayetteville Observer. "Just today, our contact in Washington told us senators won't support our bill with this contract in place."

Swett hasn't said whether he will support the deal. But he told the paper that Lewin will help gain final passage of the recognition bill.

"This is our chance," Swett said. "We appreciate the efforts that got us to this point, but we need someone with resources . and connections to the lobbyists to get us over this last hump."

Get the Story:
Lumbee group raps tribal contract (The Fayetteville Observer 4/27)

Lumbee Recognition Bills:
S.1735 | H.R.31 | H.R.839

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Lumbee council fails in vote to rescind lobbying contract (4/16)
Lumbee leaders threatened with recall over lobbying deal (4/13)
Lumbee group plans to discuss contract for recognition bid (4/8)
Editorial: Hope fading fast for Lumbee Tribe's recognition (03/22)
Lumbee Tribe ends relationship with longtime attorney (3/19)
New Lumbee chairman promises to push for recognition (1/15)
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Lumbee Tribe moves closer to federal recognition (10/23)