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Wyoming tribes criticize state for appealing EPA decision

Leaders of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe and the Northern Arapaho Tribe say officials in Wyoming are making outlandish claims about their sovereignty and authority.

The Environmental Protection Agency approved treatment as state status for both tribes. The designation recognizes the tribes' ability to set air quality standards on the Wind River Reservation.

State officials are appealing the decision, claiming it will affect taxation, law enforcement, economic development and a whole host of other issues. Similar designations in other states have not caused major problems.

“The failure of the attorney general to defend his own petition speaks volumes as to its validity,” Mark Howell, a spokesman for the Northern Arapahoe Tribe, told The Casper Star-Tribune.

The main issue is whether Riverton, a border community, remains Indian Country. The state contends the issue has been settled in the courts but the EPA decision revives the controversy.

Get the Story:
State of Wyoming petition to EPA angers tribes (The Casper Star-Tribune 1/12)

Related Stories:
Wyoming Governor: EPA designation for tribes is 'unlawful' (1/9)
WyoFile: Wyoming objects to EPA designation for two tribes (1/8)
Wyoming plans appeal for tribal treatment of state designation (12/11)
EPA approves treatment as state status for Wyoming tribes (12/10)
Tribes in Wyoming seek treatment as state status from EPA (11/22)

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