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Here is a letter in support of their right to vote. There will be MORE coming shortly about the the BIA's culpability or negligence in allowing the election to proceed.
Congressman Darrell Issa
2347 Rayburn House Office BuildingDistrict of Columbia 20515-0549
Phone: (202) 225-3906
Fax: (202) 225-3303
Re: Bureau of Indian Affairs and National Indian Gaming Commission enforcement
Dear Congressman Issa:
I am submitting this letter in support of those members of the San Pasqual Band of Diegueno Mission Indians of California (“Tribe”) whose enrollment as a member of the Tribe has been confirmed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs on numerous occasions in accordance with its authority to make final determinations involving the enrollment and disenrollment of San Pasqual Band of Diegueno Mission Indians tribal members.
I write today to request your assistance in getting the Bureau of Indian Affairs (“BIA”) and the National Indian Gaming Commission (“NIGC) to enforce the BIA decisions which have upheld the enrollment of Marcus Alto, Sr. and his descendants as members of the Tribe.
In a November 26, 2008 letter, the BIA Pacific Regional Director affirmed an earlier 1994 BIA decision which identified Marcus Alto Sr. and his descendants as enrolled members of the Tribe.
In fact, the November 26, 2008 letter explicitly states:
“It is inappropriate for the (Tribe’s Enrollment) Committee to continue to raise this issue of the validity of the inclusion of Mr. Alto and his descendants on the Band’s membership roll or to attempt to disenroll his descendants and to continue
to seek remedy from the BIA.”
In spite of numerous BIA decision’s validating their membership, the Tribe has cut off the Marcus Alto Sr. descendants from all tribal benefits, including participating in tribal meetings and other tribal functions; participating in children’s education programs and; participating in tribal assistance and tribal housing programs.
The Tribe has also prohibited Marcus Alto, Sr. descendants from entering tribal buildings; denied basic and necessary services family member’s who reside on the reservation; denied eligible members elder services; terminated the employment of family members who worked for the Tribe and removed family members from elected positions on multiple committees, boards, and commissions; denied each and every family member per capita payments in violation of the Tribe’s Revenue Allocation Plan and the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act; and, most recently, denied each and every one of the eligible voting members the right to participate in Tribal elections.
The actions listed above specifically violate an additional BIA notice, dated June 26, 2008 and served on the Tribe that states, in pertinent part, that:
“… there are no provisions in the Tribal Constitution or other enrollment
criteria for suspension of tribal membership privileges, nor is there criteria
in the Tribe’s approved Tribal Revenue Allocation Plan (TRAP) for the suspension of benefits.”
I understand that the descendants of Marcus Alto, Sr. have made numerous pleas to the BIA and the NIGC to intervene and enforce the above referenced decisions, as per their trust responsibility and in accordance with federal law, but to date, neither agency has enforced the BIA decisions which confirmed their tribal membership and the rights and privileges associated with said membership.
Therefore, I request that you correspond with the BIA and the NIGC, on behalf of the Marcus Alto, Sr. descendants, to determine why neither agency has acted to enforce the BIA’s decisions and the Tribe’s violations of the federal law, including the IGRA and the TRAP.