Thursday, January 14, 2016

UPDATE: Advisory added Ethically Challenged Hopland Band of Pomo Indians Disenrolling 70

Getting word that the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians is disenrolling 70+ members on Friday. Hopland operates the Sho-Ka-Wa casino, and seems to have had some difficulty forcing an end to per capita payments, and benefits to the tribe's youth.


Sources say this was initiated by Wanda Balderama, Wilma Elliott and William Elliott, who are all on Hopland's enrollment committee. The tribe has approximately 800 members, so this stripping of tribal citizenship will be nearly 10 percent of the tribe.

Apparently, there was a sneak rushed meeting conducted that excluded other committee members from being in attendance and thus, unable to vote.

The 3 recommended disenrollment to the tribal council and they conveniently scheduled said meeting for this Friday; the day before the tribes candidates day. Candidates day is when eligible tribal members can announce their candidacy and pay the $400 candidates fee to run for tribal council. This action might keep some from declaring

The tribe seemingly doesn't want to follow their mission statement:  The mission of the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians is to provide for the preservation of our cultural traditions, the protection of the homelands, the continuous improvement of the social and economic standard of the people, the establishment of a democratically representative government for present and future generations of the Band, 

A couple of former tribal chairpersons and their entire tribal family are being terminated, so how's that for preserving cultural traditions? Hopland seems to have had a successful tenure in the early years. First brick and mortar casino in the bay area, per cap and many other general services benefits for all tribal members and at the time, a successful EDC Corp.

Word is that attorney Lester Marsten is advising the tribe.  Marston was an advisor to the failed Tex McDonald faction of Chukchansi, whose raid on the casino forced it's closure for one year..

UPDATE Media Advisory:


*** Event Begins at HOPLAND TRIBAL COMMUNITY HALL, 3000 SANEL ROAD, HOPLAND, CA 95449 at 9:45 AM, 01/15/2016***
LOCAL HOPLAND TRIBAL COUNCIL SPECIAL MEETING TO DISENROLL 10% OF TRIBAL MEMBERS

The Hopland Band of Pomo Indians is located in Hopland, California just off of Highway 101 in Northern California. A secret meeting was held with the Hopland Tribal Enrollment Committee and a motion to disenroll 70 Tribal members was proposed. A special meeting has been scheduled for Friday morning to hear the complaint from the Enrollment Committee and to vote on its legitimacy. If the vote is in favor of the complaint the Tribal Council is rumored to be removing a currently sitting Council Member, a majority of her family, as well as preventing members of her family from applying to run for this year's Election of three seats on the Tribal Council. The Candidate's Day event set for Saturday, January 16, 2016 the following day after this special meeting. Sources say the Enrollment Committee recommendation is spearheaded by its Chairman Wanda Balderama, and committee members Wilma Elliott and William Elliott. The three were said to have held a last-minute special meeting that prevented several of the other committee members from being in attendance and having a vote on the matter.

The tribe has long since stopped providing the membership with per capita disbursements from casino profits, as the market saturation of tribally owned and operated casinos has forced tribal administrators and casino executives to focus on covering operating costs at both Hopland Sho-Ka-Wah Casino and Hopland Band of Pomo Indians tribal administrative offices. This act of disenrollment is not one based on achieving financial gain for remaining members, but rather it is a political move bent on illegitimating the voices of primarily one family group, their relatives, and members that live outside a reasonable driving distance.

During the summer of 2014, the Tribal Council already passed a change to its Election Protocols, by passing a recommendation from Election Committee Chairman Kathy Littlebear to invalidate the absentee voting status of several hundred members. The tribe's constitution requires that provisions be made for absentee voting, so using carefully chosen wording the protocol was amended to allow absentee voting for only active military or disabled persons, rendering at least 50-100 of its members unable to vote without making expensive travel arrangements from Central and Southern California, out-of-state, and members that live abroad. Rumors of a mass disenrollment began circulating after the change to the Election protocols, and it is no coincidence that it is happening just prior to this year's Election proceedings.

The tribe is already small and preserving its cultural heritage in an ongoing struggle. Keeping its membership intact is vital to the tribe's collective voice and cultural longevity. All enrolled tribal membership of the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians are encouraged to be in attendance of the Special Meeting called for this Friday, January 15, 2016 and to stand up for their fellow members. Council members may try to illegally move up the meeting time to avoid public membership attendance.

WHAT: Hopland Tribal Members Opposing Proposed 10% Disenrollment of Membership
WHO: Hopland Band of Pomo Indians Tribal Membership
WHERE: Tribal Community Hall, 3000 Sanel Road, Hopland, CA 95449
WHEN: 09:45 AM on January 15, 2016




39 comments:

Anonymous said...

Don't the tribal committees know that disenrollment ruins a tribe and does not give the people more money. It just gives the tribal leaders more money but they could be jeopardizing the whole tribe and Casino, look at Chukchansi, Nooksack, and Pala. It is just wrong to disenroll a family that has been part of the tribe forever.

Anonymous said...

Marston should be called MONSTER! I can not stand that GUY!

Unknown said...

Hopland band getting THAAAT big of percap per person to disenroll? Well "white america" taught them well, we have become a selfish Native society. To disenroll makes these families "a man without a country" so to speak :(

Unknown said...

Hopland band getting THAAAT big of percap per person to disenroll? Well "white america" taught them well, we have become a selfish Native society. To disenroll makes these families "a man without a country" so to speak :(

Anonymous said...

HBPI members have not received percap in approximately 10 +/- years... this is not geared towards financial gain for remaining members but an act of political terrorism. A sad day.

Anonymous said...

Gather your people and tribal supporters rise to your feet and fight before it is too late. Take back/over your tribe by any means necessary. GOOD luck brother's. ..............sincerely, chukchansi surviver

Jeff simili said...

Why all posts from anonymous? Be heard people. If you think its wrong speak up and say your peace. As YOU.

DISENROLLMENT TRUTH! said...

Much info here about why this is happening to so many tribes.

https://buffalohair.wordpress.com/tag/california-valley-miwok-tribe/

Matt Rodriguez said...

I am one of the 70 that will supposedly be disenrolled. My grandmother lived on this reservation and knew Wanda quite well. We native people need to stop the division amongst ourselves, it is not the solution to any problem. If you don't like my family fine, you're completely allowed to feel as you please. But don't act so swiftly by breaking moral, ethic and common sense values that we should all uphold. This is not who we are. We are better than this. Don't do what is expected by outside influences of us to do, do what is right for the native people.

Sincerely and not anonymously,

Matt Rodriguez
Grandson of Cleopha Lucille Rodriguez/Wilder

Remedy Pontas Quahna Kumeyaay said...

this Is Were Mrs Sea Cow Muncey is from. This doe sent surprise me.

Anonymous said...

Oh that explains alot, always an outside motive, I heard Muncy was being investigated, someone must know something and Muncy does not want them to talk. If they get disenrolled, Muncy can use sovereignty claim against them. If not this, definitely something and we will eventually find out, the whole thing smells very very fishy.

Anonymous said...

I hope the new expansion at Pechanga makes them go broke. Online gambling is going to kill brick and mortar casinos.

Lilawa Knight - mitchell said...

We don't get per cap!

Anonymous said...

All the fools are the ones sitting in the chairs tell me you cant see them

nickey said...

Look closely at the Chukchansi Tribe. We did everything wrong. Disenrollment hurts the WHOLE tribe. We may never recover cuz we have leaders today with blood stained hands from past disenrollments. I'm hoping and praying that these leaders see the light and right their wrongs. I don't think the Creator will give our blessings back until they do.

nickey said...

POS in my eyes

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, just in case you are not aware the monster, Lester Marston, you are referring to is probably the #1 legal expert on Indian law in California if not the whole US. I don't agree with disenrollment of anyone either. Rick Knight

Anonymous said...

You all its time for the bia to know whats going on it does't matter who votes they do what they want but be ready things are about to change we'll see whos the fools ate just because some of us don't live on the rez we still know whats going on the only ones that get help is their familys some of u know to much you will be in there no matter what its not what the people say but what the people sittin in the chairs what nothing else matters how can they look at their selfs day after day people the bia needs to come in like last time but just wait the ones that are will soon talk and the fools will look down and later fall

Anonymous said...

Who in that family was a member before the casino was built?? None of them. Once Sandy was enrolled she went crazy enrolling HER family that should have never been on there in the first place. The enrollment committee knew this along with the rest of our people and are now finally deciding to take a stand. They were enrolled under false pretense when we USED to get per cap. Is that not wrong to jump on someone else Tribe when the money start coming in??Their lineage cannot be traced back to the original 120 or so members that made up our Tribe and therefore should not have been members in the first place. Disenrollment is never a pretty thing but neither is having your tribe taken over by people that are NOT from there and only jumped on for a check. This has nothing to do with money as we get NO money from our Tribe.

Anonymous said...

Agree, apparently the whole system is messed up, there are Natives who should be enrolled, those who should never have been enrolled in the first place who have taken over tribes, those who were adopted and are taking over tribes, those who were marked wrong on Censuses, those who have treated members unjustly, those who have committed major crimes, those who have to watch their families be destroyed by their own people, those who see a Casino built and quickly want to be members, those who are white and make their way in among the leaders, those who are elected officials and see a way of getting more money from tribal leaders to give them rights they should not be given, those who turn a blind eye to the corruption involved, those outsiders who help the corruption continue. How to solve a problem that is almost unsolvable. How did it all get to this point? If someone was enrolled before the Casino came into play then they should remain even if they were there under bad records. The government started all of this with their forceful ways of getting rid of Indians and shoving them onto unwanted land or such small portions from what their tribes were used to and giving them allotments on land that was already theirs, and now they just let Tribal Leaders abuse their own people and take the allotments back from the original families who had them and give them to the tribe (which really means the leaders get the land). If the leaders want land for whatever reason they deny families access to their own land, like using land illegally to dump sewage from the Casino and then telling the landowners that they cannot see their land or go on it, and if that family tries to sue, they get sovereignty slapped in the face and the whole tribe starts looking down on them from the crap the leaders spew out about them. I hope this tribe works things out.

Matt Rodriguez said...

Hey Anonymous people, why don't you put your real name?

As for the comment from 12:22pm, my grandmother Cleopha whom is Sandy's mother, grew up on the reservation and her father was once chair person at the tribe. I am very interested in hearing/reading your explanation for us not being apart of the tribe before the casino was built. Just because we grew up off the reservation does not in any way shape or form mean that we are no longer apart of the tribe.

Anonymous said...

Isn't this happening everywhere. Look at coyote valley. Two families illegally kick out everyone else and getting away with it. They will get theres in the end. Les Marsten was part of that in the beginning too. Everyone needs to go to BIA and make them pull recognition from them. Remember something everyone. Federal indian law says the federal government must defer to tribal remedies. Do a take over. Call for a special meeting and vote them out. Say to them what they said to you. All according to the bylaws of course. And freeze everything up. Make BIA help you by not helping them.

RezAngel21 said...

I agree with what is being said here. We are coming up on 10 years of disenrollment for my family. We should have reacted more aggressively. Do not allow them to take what is yours! Take it back by any means necessary! Fight with everything you have now! Shut things down!

Waited to long said...

Better act now before you are asked by the Courts and the Government
why you waited so long.
If without any doubt you think you are right then take a stand and fight back and don't wait for someone else to do it for you.
If you have to take over the Tribal offices, then fuck it do it.

Anonymous said...

That enrollment committee vote really was a dead vote. There should have never been a recommendation sent to tribal council for a motion or vote tomorrow. The vote of those present was 2 yes, 1 no, and 1 abstention. The chairperson of the committee doesn't vote unless there's a tie (which there wasn't). These members that are up for dis-enrollment haven't even been given their due process. The 3 or 4 members on council do things "because we can." (Which has come out of their mouths.)

Elizabeth Ray said...

They aren't even Hopland pomo, they grandfathered themselves in 20 years ago, yes one or two live on the rez but that doesn't make them members. There is no grandfather clause in our constitution. These people have embezzled, lied, and yes they got into council. They almost closed the casino, shot down our opportunities, and none of them will tell these details. They aren't descendants of any tribal blood members except through marriage. I'm not saying they aren't native, just that they aren't Hopland pomo! They will register with their own tribe after all is said and done. Is it right they are squatters and receive checks?

Anonymous said...

Thought you didn't receive per-capita? SO how could they be squatting receiving checks? Sounds like someone is fooling the tribe about finances, there should be some left for the tribe. Unless your leaders have the same type car, house, etc as the members. It might be an out of way casino, but then why would you build one when it would not get business. The meeting seems sneaky, if it was on the up and up and these people really do not belong, why the secrecy, the tribe should vote, not just the council.

Anonymous said...

They didn't grandfather themselves in 20 years ago. The older generations have been members for over 30 years. Way before casino time. Don't believe everything your Christian cousins tell you. They don't even know who the members are, always having to ask "who is this person?" Well they'd know if they participated more than just getting a check when we did get per cap or asking the tribe to pay for something for your kids. Come to meetings! Be informed in person rather than hear a liars words after the fact.

Anonymous said...

Hearing the way that these people are being treated, it is just not right, whether they belong or not, you don't give a 3 day eviction notice, you don't have police escort them off of the land like that. It is inhumane and down right evil. Let someone have their dignity, if they don't belong there is no need to be so evil. Give them 6 months and no police escort and no one laughing at them. You are suppose to be Native American the race of peace and spirituality, not mean cruel assholes. More and more Natives are showing a very evil dark nature lately with loud mouths, rude gestures, and greedy hands. What happened to the real Natives? I will tell you, they are the ones being disenrolled, because a legitimate disenrollment by good leaders would be handled better.

Anonymous said...

It's sad in Native communities when you hear about disenrollment amongst their own people. Native communities were once known to welcome and take care of their own people. I see the trend of the Native communities transitioning to the way European American's are known for: greed, corrupt and love power. It's really sad the Native's are dying out and hurting one another along the way!!

Anonymous said...

I agree 2:06 pm and it's all because of the Bad Leaders of the Tribes.
It's to bad that we can't just shoot them in their no brain heads and end it.
Sooner or later the tables will turn and they will feel the raft of punishment that they so earned.

Anonymous said...

But look at Pechanga...they finally get rid of one evil doer and then they vote his felony record son onto the Council. Why would any tribe put a man on the council that has a felony? Aren't they known as the Basquez crime family on this site.? Even his step mom is being sued for running a crooked dealers school.

Anonymous said...

Their voting is fixed! He probably has info on Macarro or his wife that they do not want to get out so they put him on the council seat.

Anonymous said...

So what's next for Raymond Jr. Is he going to start screwing his stepmom.

Anonymous said...

Sad all the way around. I was a loyal customer at the casino from day one. Watched the corruption ooze in and the casino fall a part, which was sad because lots of nice folks worked there. We saw them all leave one by one and haven't been on the property in almost two years. I run into lots of players who left and all wish that it would go back to being run well and be fun again, but the club and tribe clearly does not care. Running off all the good players and shutting down the marketing (haven't seen a promo in over a year) is no way to successfully lead a business. Seems pretty clear from all this new mess that maybe the group was and is not capable of handling its business ventures, when it is clear they can't get along or handle their tribal business. Such a shame.

Anonymous said...

Elizabeth Ray wants more details? How about her father, DON Ray was among the accused of embezzlement in early 2000's? Alongside 3 others who were investigated by DOJ, FBI, auditors, inspectors, private and state forensic investigators and then some. After over $2 million spent on the forensic investigations and attorney fees (Tom Weathers), the investigation closed when Wanda Balderama hosted that dinner all of the investigators to break the news. Surprise! Your tribe's money wasn't stolen!

That wasn't good enough for Wanda though. She was so pissed her nose went purple! She kept withholding Elizabeth Ray's dad Don Ray and the few others per cap until Wanda was overthrown from council in 2004 and BANNED for 10 years from serving (until Joe San Diego who was tribal chair last year - placed Wanda as enrollment committee queen) that the new council gave Don Ray and Sandy a chance to speak and present their case to council and get their names and whatever per cap reinstated. Council reinstated and also paid Debra Rivera posthumously her share after she passed away.

Elizabeth Ray, ask your pop about that Lake County Health Clinic embezzlement thing that was all in federal court. See what he might be able to tell you that these court papers can't tell us all.

And ask your tribal administrator/ treasurer cousin about her role in the super secret marijuana pot farm that she - Bernadette Mora and police chief Scalercio are BOTH now 2 year cannabis commissioners of. (You remember Chief Scalercio, he's in all those videos recorded blocking the doorways to his beloved crop crime family, the cop who "doesn't know the law" according to himself on video)

That pot farm is "leasing" tribal lands through Joe's "Hopland Realty Corp." that Sheriff Almond and the Attorney General knows nothing about... yet.

So, how much did the first harvest earn the tribe? $0? But... Where's the 15% of this "medical marijuana" lease and oversight deal at? How much is 300 plants worth to these guys? How much is being put back into the kids trusts and elders payments? Ask Bern, Joe and HEDCO and HRC.

Ask Bernadette, Joe, Iyesha and Renee who else is getting illegally disenrolled because they, we and now you know too much? Disenrollment is the distraction they need to conduct their kind of backdoor business deals.

"Because we can"


Come back with some more lies, I have more truths to reveal. Investor names and all.

"Darkness does not like the light"


Wake up Hopland! Demand answers from these guys. They're stealing frm you ALL! They're disenrolling anyone there now because the people are refusing to be their crooks!

K. Red Eagle said...

Lester Marston and Tony Cohen are trying to dis enroll every person living at the Elem Indian Colony in Clearlake Oaks. The people protested Marstons office last week and he came out and lied. He told them he was not the tribes attorney and blamed Tony Cohen even after he was given paperwork identifying him as one of the tribes attorney. (Along with Tony Cohen) They are both pure evil and everyone needs to know. If he is the so called best attorney in the nation why does he file bar complaints against attorneys that face him in an attempt to get them to walk away. He might be the best manipulator and coward in the nation but that's about it. He is single handedly destroying tribes. With every cultural genocide there is a snake like him behind the scenes. I understand tribes are responsible for there own actions, but he is always behind the scenes making things EASIER for tribal councils.
He has been the attorney for these disenrollments in the last ten years and this is just off the top of my head so I'm probably missing a bunch:
Coyote Valley
Robinson Rancheria
Chukchansi Tribe
Hopland Tribe
Elem Indian Colony
?????

Wake up people and come together. Our ancestors fought for our sovereignty to protect us from the government, never in a million years thinking we would use it against our own people.

Anonymous said...

"They aren't even Hopland pomo, they grandfathered themselves in 20 years ago, yes one or two live on the rez but that doesn't make them members. There is no grandfather clause in our constitution"

these are facts, known by locals in the area. there are many families- Indian,White, Mexican who have lived on the rez, for generations. How does that make them members? IF I ( I am Italian heritage ) marry a woman from Mexico, does that make me racially Mexican? IF I buy a house on a reservation does that make me an Indian? How about my grandchildren- they can claim their grandmother lived on a reservation and so are member of the tribe? maybe if you just got rid of the casino- these dis-enrolled people would focus on rebuilding their own tribe. And maybe if the tribe would get rid of the meth and prostitution- the biggest employer of Hopland Pomo - they might have a chance to rebuild their own tribe. - M Marino

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