Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Pechanga Looking to BUY BACK Allottee Land at CUT RATE PRICES. Are the GRAVES of our Ancestors Included?

In August 2015, Guest Blogger Free Range Indian wrote a piece on the lands owned by Natives disenrolled from their tribes and what is in store.  Tomorrow, there is a meeting scheduled to "explain" how the land buy back program will work for the Hunter Allotment.   DO we lose our land to a corrupt tribe?  Will Pechanga dig up the graves of our ancestors?


Interesting that The Department of Interior found so many (not me) to notify them of the meeting, yet COULD NOT FIND a single one of us to discuss Pechanga cheating us out of our water rights!

We've owned ours for over 120 years.  Some new adopted tribal council members decide we should no longer have the land of our ancestors and what??, we should MOVE?   Bullshit.  That would be placing a LOT of people in danger.

Here's Free Range Indian's post again:


It is just a matter of time before the BIA is confronted with the next elephant in the room. It is not just a matter of disenrollment. It now becomes a realty matter. How many disenrolled Indians are carried on the rolls of the Office of Special Trust? How many of the disenrolled have land interests in trust land?

What will happen to the land of the disenrollees?

Are the disenrollees Indian or not? If they are Indian and eligible to have their lands to be held in trust then which rule is the BIA using to make this determination. If the BIA determines that a disenrollee is not Indian, does this mean that the disenrollee’s land automatically becomes fee land and subject to taxation?

The BIA already went through the nightmare of the Cobell Settlement Case. Do you think the BIA is prepared for the next nightmare?

Tribes now have first right to acquire minor interests in allotments and also to acquire fee lands because of tax default. In a twist of laws and regulations it gives tribes the right of eminent domain. Eminent Domain gives tribes the right to condemn and take property away from individuals if the tribe feels that property is necessary for the benefit of the tribe.  OP:  This will lead to bloodletting.

Would tribes really go so far as to take away people’s property? It didn’t take long for many of the tribes to evict disenrollees from their homes and assigned lands so it can be predicted that as long as the BIA plays along, the disenrollees can expect another round of their heritage disappearing before their very eyes.

It is my understanding that Robert Eben, former Superintendent of the Southern Californian Agency, BIA, was already working with tribal leaders to develop the authority to condemn the lands of the disenrollees. A Freedom of Information request on the topic of eminent domain to the BIA should be very revealing. They were working to define and give the authority and right to tribes to exercise the power of Eminent Domain.

Land that is in fee title (Such as owned by Pechanga Chairman Macarro) is not under the jurisdiction of the BIA and not of the tribe. Any attempt to take fee lands could possibly be interpreted as “Adverse Condemnation”. If there is anything that shakes the core of State and Local government it is the challenge in court of Adverse Condemnation.  Governments almost always lose in these matters and it is an area of law where the tribes will not be able to scream “sovereign immunity”.  If the United States, States and Local governments can be sued for Adverse Condemnation I do not believe the courts will be sympathetic to tribes and grant them a higher degree of power than that of the United States.

So which is it? Are the disenrollees Indian or not? If they are Indian, how does the BIA reach this conclusion and how are they able to carry the disenrollees on the rolls of the Office of Special Trust. If they are Indian then aren’t they entitled to the full protection of the United States? Is the United States obligated to protect the disenrollees from any further assault from the tribes and have their lands protected and their status as Indian persons protected as well?

So if the United States via the BIA is assisting the tribes in developing the “proper” authority to exercise the power of eminent domain, is the United States also obligated to protect the rights of the very same ones they are advising tribes on ways of taking away lands of the disenrollees?
It is ethnic cleansing at its finest degree. It is the BIA working to provide a way for tribes to purge themselves of the disenrollees and to consolidate the lands of the reservations. It truly is the next elephant in the room.


SanLuisRey said...

Shouldn't water rights monies still be available to any California Indian who was deemed a California Indian by the Census Bureau? Regardless of Tribal affiliation.

WeRone said...

Land issues have always been a concern for our families and the creation of reservations with Allotted land is for sure a flooded gate full of uncertainty especially since some reservations with Allotted land have dis-enrolled some with interest in the Allotments. The buy back of Allotted lands is part of the Cobbell lawsuit and land settlement and is putting a knife back into families who have been stripped of their tribal voices by corrupt individuals. Sad TRUTH

Anonymous said...

This is scary shit. Sounds like it also means tribal leaders could disenroll someone because they want the land. When will this crap end? This is ridiculous, talk about greedy and outright pure evil. It should not even be possible, but with the greed, fraud, and corruption in the tribes and the government that disenrolled natives do not stand a chance. We just keep getting knocked down, it sucks. I am so sorry for all wrongfully disenrolled.

Anonymous said...

The sad thing is that someone is going to take a stand and protect his property no matter what.
And that's when someone will either kill someone or hurt them real bad and it's all because of the corruption that has taken over the once peaceful and real Reservations.
I would really hate to see this happen in Indian Country but this issue is getting way out hand.
If this issue does in fact get to this breaking point, I hope that no innocent people will get harmed.
So shoot straight and make sure you have the intended target that is harming the people, aka the chairman.

Anonymous said...

How does Pechanga "buy back" land that is held in trust? The BIA is their overlord, they do not own the land.

Reinstatement_Restitution said...

The intent of the land buy back program is to reduce the fractionation of alloted parcels and restore land to communal use. In some cases the parcels of land area so small they are of limited value to individuals so purchasing the land and restoring it to the community might benefit both sides.

Eminent domain should not be available to tribes because trust land is owned by the United States, and collusion between the federal government and tribal governments to negatively affect allottees is not authorized by law or regulation.

Anonymous said...

Look at the courts cases,at the 9Th d court,even went to the higest court, plus the b.i.a. none of them protected the disenrolled members .they are all corrupt,

Reinstatement_Restitution said...

People have to start fighting the battles that they can win instead of trying to get the court to overturn Santa Clara Pueblos v. Martinez. When the court upholds a Supreme Court decision it is not corruption. They are only following the ruling of the highest court in the land.

When disenrollees go to court asking the court to protect their right to membership they are going to lose. The court will not protect disenrollees' right to tribal membership. The court will not overturn tribal governing documents; tribes have a protected right to self-determination and self-government. The court will not protect Indian Civil Rights under the ICRA. Even though the Indian Civil Rights Act was created to protect the civil rights of Indians, the Supreme Court has ruled that it was not the intent of Congress to protect all the rights of Indians, only those involving illegal detention.

The land rights of allotees is a debatable issue which has not really been tested. The unfortunate truth about testing the issue means exhausting administrative remedy, suing under the APA and losing, appealing the decision and losing, and obtaining review by the Supreme Court. We are talking about a long and arduous road that will be expensive and disheartening. I can only say that the current laws and regulations do not address disenrollment in terms of land allotments. However, many non-members hold interest in allotted land and that has never been challenged by tribes.

If tribes exert their sovereign powers and act to remove allotted trust lands on reservations from non-members, there are unresolved questions that must be addressed. Trust land is not owned by tribes, and allotted lands were intended for the individual use of allottees and not for the communal use of tribes. Therefore tribes lack standing to condemn allotted land under the aegis of eminent domain. Only the federal government can take such action, and there would be no benefit to the federal government to condemn allotted land since it only resides within the exterior boundaries of reservations, and would revert into trust.

This is an opportunity for Indians to clarify the issue. Some well heeled allottee should start the challenge now before the tribes gather momentum and obtain some favorable decisions. Cause of action and standing will be the big obstacles. What cause of action does a non-Indian have against a tribe seeking to regain trust land held by individuals grandfathered in under the General Land Allotment Act? And what standing does that non-Indian individual have other than the wish of an ancestor that a descendant be able to use land that was allotted far in the past?

It is a conundrum that will be difficult to disentangle from the desire of tribes to harm disenrollees. In my opinion tribes undermine their own communities and weaken their sovereignty by taking adverse actions against former members. Unless a tribe can clearly establish a benefit that would proceed from condemning land that is in individual hands and from which no harm to the tribe can be ascribed there should be no justification for such clearly malicious action.

WeRone said...

The Fact IS :

Tribes are not the harmonious band of people that non Indians think they are. There are always schisms and factions that do not get along with one another.What happens when one small group gains complete control of the Tribe with the added incentive of millions of dollars in their pockets (people have been killed for much less)? What happens when your accusers become your judge and jury (this is what happened to us)?

Before the Tribe had anything they were happy to have us as members, it wasn't until it looked like the tribe was going to get something that memberships were questioned. Our family has been recognized as members of the tribe for over 100 years according to the records on file with the BIA.

It is historical fact supported by certified documentation that our ancestor Paulina Hunter was an Indian that lived in the original Temecula Indian village. She was also recognized by members of that tribe as a member via witnessed and certified documents of that period.It is recorded that she was evicted along with the rest of the tribe from the Temecula village and moved to the area known as Pechanga to live with them.

One of the most revered and respected members of the Tribe, Antonio Ashman wrote before his death in a signed and witnessed document stating that he knew Paulina Hunter personally as a member of the tribe.

In 1915 tribal elders who needed translation from Luiseno who were alive at the time (1882) the reservation was created, said they knew her personally as a member of the Tribe, and gave signed witnessed depositions stating that they knew her as a member of the tribe and detailed her family. Tribal elders also gave signed and witnessed statements during our hearing that they have always recognized the Hunters as members of the tribe.Now more than a hundred years after her death, in a record of decision from the Pechanga Enrollment Committee, they state that she was some other kind of Indian, who just happened to live with the tribe in the original village, and the people from that tribe mistakenly believed she was a member. They say that she just happened to be kicked out of the original village to move to Pechanga with the rest of the Tribe to live.They say that the government mistakenly gave her an allotment on the reservation as a Pechanga Indian. That she is listed on the original Pechanga Reservation records as a Temecula Pechanga Indian by mistake (that I might add happened year after year, every year until her death).They say that tribal elders from the 1800's were mistaken when they gave signed witnessed depositions stating that they knew her as a member of the tribe.

FACT: The disenrollment committee hired Dr. John Johnson, curator of Anthropology at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History for an anthropology report on our ancestor Paulina Hunter. To their dismay he answered the questions in his report saying that he was 90% sure (he now says he is 100% sure) that she was a Pechanga Indian. Why the change in percentage you ask? There was a fire at the San Luis Rey Mission that destroyed documents from the time period that is relevant.Then a small group known as the CPP tell us that THEY know who "real" members are, and that documentation means NOTHING. We were even told by one member of the enrollment committee that we were going to be disenrolled no matter WHAT documents we provided. One member even slept throughout our hearing. We were told we could NOT take in writing tools or paper, and could NOT have legal representation, nor given a transcript of the hearings.Just to let those who are unaware of the history, Pechanga was the name of a place not a tribe, our tribe moved to the area known as Pechanga and later established the reservation on that land known as The Pechanga Reservation.

According to Dr Johnson's report:Mateo Quasicac Paulina Hunter's father was born in Pechanga (this was before there was a reservation). In fact he is the only Indian listed in the mission records as being born at Pechanga.

WeRone said...

According to Dr Johnson's report:Mateo Quasicac Paulina Hunter's father was born in Pechanga (this was before there was a reservation). In fact he is the only Indian listed in the mission records as being born at Pechanga.

It would seem that her father being born an Indian at Pechanga makes him a Pechanga Indian even before there was a reservation named Pechanga.Paulina Hunter lived in the original Temecula Indian village (fact supported by signed and witnessed documents from the period). She moved with her tribe when they were evicted to the area known as Pechanga, an area well known to her and her family, as her father was born there. She is listed on each and every census record for the Pechanga reservation from its creation until her death. She was granted a land allotment (listing her as a Pechanga Indian) from the president of the United States in the 1800's. And now over 100 years after her death, some are claming she was some other kind of Indian? You might ponder "if it is a small group, why hasn't the rest of the Tribe tried to put a stop it?" Well we DID in 2005. As a matter of fact in the largest gathering of our Tribe in recorded history, we voted to STOP "ALL" disenrollment which removed the Disenrollment Procedure from Pechanga Tribal Law. This was the largest voter turnout since the inception of the Reservation. The margin was more than 2:1 in favor of removing the procedure.This so shocked the CPP(Corrupt Pechanga People) that has gained control that they stopped ALL tribal meetings for the next few months, and in secret behind closed doors, guarded by armed guards decided to disregard the vote and the will of the people and disenrolled the Hunters regardless of the law. This act resulted in removing 100+ adults from the upcoming political elections, quarterly bonus, and percapita distributions. Those who are left on the Rez live in fear that if they now speak up the same lawless actions will happen to them.

Anonymous said...

Yes Pechanga's Tribal Committees are as corrupt as Pala's. It seems like we are always saying that the existing members live in fear of being disenrolled so they don't do anything to help the members who were disenrolled by standing up and fighting for them. Which is understandable to a point. Yes they are in fear, but many live in that fear as they go on vacations, buy new cars, buy toys, constantly eat out and put it on all display, so, do they really care about those who were disenrolled or do they care about losing their money? Are they almost as guilty as someone who watches another person being violated without stepping in? And when some decent people actually speak up, do the others stand behind them, or do they look the other way and act like nothing happened? The existing members can side-step it all they want but they have gone from innocent bystanders to silenced witnesses, who are slowly becoming guilty by association, the longer they let things continue in this evil manner the more guilty they become. The disenrolled deserve their justice, they belong, probably more than many others who are members, and they have gone through so much heartbreak and harm it is time to end this hate and stand by your brother, put your money to good use and band together to oust your tribes of these ruthless animals you call your leaders.

WeRone said...

They will have to face the TRUTH now while here or when the visit the creator after leaving us. We stand in honor of ALL our relations and will continue to look for ALL the TRUTH tellers nation wide!