Thursday, July 28, 2011

Morris Reid, of Civil Rights Abusing Picayune Rancheria OPPOSED to Other Tribe Getting Casino

Morris Reid, on the tribal council of the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians in Coarsegold, near Fresno, said his group was against tribes starting casinos off their reservations.

Doing so would lead to the destruction of the tribe, he said. HIS OWN tribe is self destructing with HIS help.  Picayune has terminated HALF their tribe, over 500 people and are looking to DESTROY MORE.    And he travels 200 miles to Barstow to keep another tribe from benefitting from gaming?

Reid said his tribe, which operates a casino in Coarsegold, is concerned about the trend this casino might start if it is approved.

Reid said the tribe is also concerned about out-of-state operators running Indian casinos. WHY?  Look what's happened with a STATE RUN TRIBE running the show?   Destruction of the tribe, poverty for half their people, violations of civil rights.    Doesn't that make you PROUD Morris?

Read more HERE

Native American Caucus, Who Voted AGAINST Civil Rights For Indians, Looks to Lower Dues

Andrew Masiel Sr has sent out a missive that the Native American Caucus, which famously PAID for people to join the group to vote down a resolution on civil rights, will look to lower it's dues.   Then, they ask for people to join the Democratic Party.  Will they pay for more votes  with the help of Ron Andrade and L.A County?

Does this mean the Democratic Party supports the human and civil rights violations that Andrew Masiel has supported with his tribe, the Pechanga band of Luiseno Indians?   The are the second leading tribe when it comes to disenrollments and violations of due process in CA's Indian Country.

Disenrollment, Banishment and Moratoriums are going to be Andrew Masiel's legacy, along with the dishonoring of their tribal veterans.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Navajo Code Talker Joe Morris Sr. Dies at 85

My weapon was my language," World War II Marine veteran Joe Morris Sr. told a crowd of nearly 200 in a San Bernardino park on Veterans Day in 2004. "We saved a lot of lives."

Morris, one of the Navajo code talkers whose use of their native language in transmitting messages successfully thwarted Japanese code breakers in the Pacific during World War II, died Sunday at the Jerry L. Pettis Memorial VA Medical Center in Loma Linda of complications of a stroke, said his daughter, Colleen Anderson. He was 85.

There are approx 65 of these 'national treasures' left.

Read More about Joe Morris Sr.

Barona Resort Bedbug Lawsuit Tossed For Statute of Limitations

The Chisleys were bitten by bedbugs at the Barona Resort and Casino, Orkin apparently tried to cover up the issue.  YOU should immediately report bedbugs at hotels, and if it's tribal, you should make it public, as tribes would not be required to report it to health departments.    

The Chisleys failed to win a lawsuit against Barona Resort and Casino for bed bug bites experienced during their stay in a guestroom in early August of 2005 after deciding then that now was not the time to find out who was responsible for letting the bugs crawl over and infest their stay bed. Yesterday, July 20, 2011, the California Fourth District Court of Appeals agreed with local Superior Court Judge Yuri Hofmann and let Barona avoid the charges by affirming the lower court's dismissal.

Robert and Gloria did not file the California appeal against Orkin Exterminating Company, Inc. and an employee that did the pest control work at Barona until March 18, 2009, more than 3 years after the bug biting. The "accidental injuries" were the reason for four claims. Negligence was the basic charge.

A statute of limitations in the Civil Code of Procedure cut off the time for a suit filing on the first two claims, including the negligence claim, at 2 years. Another statute limited the time for filing the third and fourth claims to 3 years

Continue reading on Bed bug lawsuit not on time - San Diego Public Policy

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Has the Pechanga Tribe Broken Their Moratorium or Just Tribal Law?

Sources on the Pechanga Reservation in Temecula are saying that there has been a new member added from Sacramento.  This is an interesting twist.   The Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians have had a longstanding moratorium on new members.

We DO know that former Enrollment Committee chair Bobbi LeMere was rewarded for her vote to eliminate an entire family of now 178 members, with her family members being brought in.  A small reward for putting two entire families out of the tribe, totally 25% of the membership.

Current tribal law is for no new members.    Who benefits from getting in a family member?   Did it have anything to do with the termination of PDC execs?

Cherokee Nation Supreme Courts Orders NEW Principal Chief Election

Cherokee Nation Supreme Court justices have ordered for a new principal chief election.

The order will be given to the election commission, who then must turn it over to Chief Chad Smith. It is the chief's responsibility to set a date for the new election.

Will Smith follow the LAW?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Michelle Shining Elk Casting Has Opportunities for Native American Actors

If you are a Native American actor, Michelle Shining Elk Casting is looking for you.  The link is to the Facebook page.

First up in the Michelle Shining Elk casting arena is “The Cherokee Word for Water,” a film based on a segment of the life of the late, and highly regarded female leader in Indian country, Ms. Wilma Mankiller. “The Cherokee Word for Water” is being produced by esteemed Paul Heller, who known best for producing the Academy Award Winning film “My Left Foot,” and being co-produced by Charlie Soap and Wes Studi and slated to begin shooting in September 2011 in Oklahoma

Headshots and Resumes can be sent to:

Indian Gaming Shows NO GROWTH in 2010. Sacramento Region DOWN $200 Million

Tribes promised us help to balance our budgets if we gave them expanded gaming 2 years ago.   Now, they can't even show growth, in fact, 2010 showed a decrease in gaming dollars to the Sacramento region, according to NIGC report released this week.

When will the BILLIONS of dollars CA gaming tribes promised us arrive?  Overall Indian gaming revenues were flat vs. 2009 which ended in a decrease over 2008.

It seems the only tribes benefitting, are those those who eliminated members.   The number of dollars stolen by tribes in CA is nearing the $500 MILLION mark.

See for more information on tribal disenrollments across our country.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Anatomy of Robinson Rancheria Corruption: ELDER ABUSE, denial of civil rights

Elizabeth Larson has the story, first published in 2008

Late last month, the Robinson Rancheria Band of Pomos Citizens Business Council informed several dozen members of its intent to remove their tribal membership, an action taking place not just locally but around California and the nation.

Between 60 and 74 members have reportedly been told they will be removed from the tribe's rolls unless, as a result of a half-hour appeal hearing granted to those who request it, the council chooses to let the members remain.
The appeal hearings to determine the future for these potential disenrollees began this week.

Tribal Chair Tracey Avila said this week that questions surrounding these tribal members and their entitlement to be included among the band's number have been an issue for years, going back to 1990.

This is the largest disenrollment action the tribe has ever taken, she concedes, as the tribe prepares for a January election to determine who will be tribal chair, as well as two other seats.

A June 14 election was decertified, and the tribe's election committee – dominated by Avila's family – has ruled that her challenger for the seat, EJ Crandell – who won the June election – has been disqualified from running.

Crandell and other tribal members, including potential disenrollee Luwana Quitiquit, say the disenrollments are purely political and retaliatory.

The tribe's own enrollment ordinance states that disenrollment is possible on three grounds: the person obtained enrollment by error, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation; they became a fully recognized member of another tribe without relinquishing their Robinson Rancheria membership; the person is a descendant of a disenrollee and doesn't otherwise meet membership requirements.

The ordinance doesn't allow for disenrollment due to adoption, which traditionally has been a common practice among American Indians.
However, the tribal council has passed a resolution to strike the adoption process, which Quitiquit and Crandell say is an ex post facto law, which is prohibited in the tribe's 1980 constitution, just as it is the US Constitution.

If it's truly the case that Robinson's disenrollment is born out of politics and animosity toward rival families, the Robinson band wouldn't be unique. That's because attempts to reduce tribal membership through these types of actions aren't new to Lake County, California or the nation.

On Nov. 10, 2007, 25 members of the Elem Colony were removed from that tribe's rolls, including the last native speaker of the tribe's language. Then-chairman, Ray Brown Sr. acknowledged the move to County News in a previous interview, saying that the move was justified because many of the people were adopted into the tribe and weren't blood relations.

To date, an estimated 2,000 Indians have been disenrolled by 15 California tribes – not including those currently proposed at Robinson, according to John Gomez, president of the American Indian Rights and Resources Organization (AIRRO), a group that focuses on human and civil rights issues.

Bureau of Indian Affairs Deputy Regional Director Dale Risling, based in Sacramento, said “quite a few” tribes are going through disenrollments currently.

He said his agency hears about most of them through the media, and not directly, since they don't usually have a role in settling the disputes because of tribal constitutions. “The ones that we really get are the ones that require our involvement.”
Tony Gonzales, spokesman for the American Indian Movement-West, said gaming tribes decertifying members has become a big problem nationwide as well.

That's because a lot is at stake, with gaming tribes across the nation generating revenues in the realm of $46 billion.
“Unfortunately, in the process to gain more money for themselves, they are decertifying members,” said Gonzales. “The irony, too, is they're adopting non-Indians into their tribes.”

Some blame gaming for disenrollments
In California, Gomez said the vast majority of disenrollments have occurred since the passage of Proposition 5, the Tribal Government Gaming and Economic Self-Sufficiency Act of 1998 that allowed gaming on tribal lands, and Proposition 1A, passed in 2000, allowing tribes to operate slot machines and banked and percentage card games.

He said it's mostly the gaming tribes who carry out reducing membership in this way. “I don't believe it's just about greed. I think it's about greed and retaining political power.”

Gomez was among 200 people disenrolled by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians in 2004. Two years later, as many as 175 more Pechanga tribal members saw their membership disappear. “Both times it just happened prior to regularly scheduled elections for tribal council.”

The Redding Rancheria's first tribal chair, Bob Foreman, and his family – all 76 members – were disenrolled in 2002 after their lineage was questioned. Despite providing DNA samples to prove their ancestry, Foreman – who had been tribal chair for 20 years – was pushed out of the tribe.

Gomez said Foreman, who incidentally was born in Nice, went on to be a founding member of AIRRO.

Foreman died Nov. 19, and Gomez and other AIRRO members are traveling to Redding for his funeral this weekend, at which time they're expected to discuss possible action in response to Robinson's disenrollment move.

He said disenrollments often evolve around election disputes, as in Robinson's case. Similarly, Gomez said the Mooretown Rancheria of Oroville reclassified 30 percent of its membership and denied them voting rights so they couldn't participate in an election planned four days later. “The tribe still counts them as members but they're members without rights.”

Many tribal members will attempt to justify disenrollment actions saying that there is a question about ancestry, but he points out that such questions didn't arise when the tribes were counting members for federal government assistance.

As tribal rolls dwindle, federal funding also can go away, he said. However, the larger gaming tribes can afford to fund their own programs.

Quitiquit and some other tribal members facing disenrollment, many of whom asked that their names not be used at this time due to fear of retribution, said they felt Robinson Rancheria's casino and gaming had given rise to many of their current problems.

Rather than helping Indians get a leg up, they say that gaming is leading to expulsion of tribal members – among them veterans and elders – who may face a life on welfare without the support of their tribal communities.

Some Indian activists have even gone so far as to call disenrollment the “new Indian genocide.”
The problem is such a concern in Indian Country that last year, American Indian Movement activist Dennis Banks said that the Bureau of Indian Affairs needed to intervene to stop the California disenrollments.

A Government Accountability Office report issued last month, titled “Confirmation of Political Appointees: Eliciting Nominees' Views on Management Challenges within Agencies and Across Government,” also recognizes the problem.

The report urged political leaders to ask the following question of nominees for the Secretary of the Interior, which includes the Bureau of Indian Affairs: “Tribal membership disputes and tribal leadership disputes seem to be occurring more and more frequently. What experience do you have in working with tribal leadership and trying to resolve these types of disputes or in trying to prevent them?”

Far-reaching implications for loss of tribal membership
Gomez said AIRRO is seeing the same thing happening around the state – Indians stripped of lawful citizenship and all of the associated rights – from housing to education to health care to jobs.

When membership in a federally recognized tribe is lost, federal help goes away, he said. “It cuts across everything that has to do with their lives.”
The affects aren't just social or economic, but emotional and psychological as well, said Gomez. Being put out of a tribe has serious implications about identity for people who are being told they are no longer Indian.

If Robinson Rancheria goes through with its proposed membership reduction, Quitiquit said the implications could be devastating.

Among the first acts she expects is for disenrolled members to be banished from the rancheria. That would mean leaving their homes; Quitiquit's own family stands to lose two of an estimated 10 homes at stake.

Being cut off from the land also would mean they could be prevented from visiting the graves of their family members at the rancheria's cemetery, said Quitiquit. Gomez said that's happened in other areas.

There would also be a loss of education opportunities and funding, as well as Indian health services,which are critical due to the high number of tribal members suffering from diabetes and chronic diseases, particularly elders.

Those who hold jobs with the tribe also could be fired. She said some of the members in question already have been put on administrative leave from their jobs. A “no gossip” memo also was reportedly issued by Avila to staff, warning that discussion about the disenrollments would result in termination.

Quitiquit, who recently left her job as a cook for a program that provides meals to 24 homebound elders, said 20 of those elders are facing disenrollment. The four who would be left would not be enough to justify continuing the federally funded meals program.

Elders would lose their monthly retirement payments of $400, said Quitiquit. “All the elders are suffering right now because we don't have it.”

All members currently on the disenrollment list have had their payments suspended, including the $300 per capital payment plus a $2,000 Christmas bonus, funded through federal grants and revenues from the tribe's casino on Highway 20.

One elderly woman who is a caretaker for her grandchildren told Quitiquit she won't be able to make ends meet outside of the tribe.

Quitiquit said the tribal council, in its attempt to maintain power, can take these actions under the guise of sovereignty. “Forget about our civil rights.”

In the last election, many people voted for Avila because she said she was not for disenrollment, said Quitiquit. “We were completely fooled.”

She added, “If this is what happens to us, then down the road it's going to happen to the other tribal members they don't like.”

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Anatomy of Pechanga Tribal Corruption: Let's Have a WITCH HUNT started by a LIE

Cousin Luiseno laid out how a "witch hunt" was started by a lie, perpetrated by Yolie McCarter and Basquez Crime Family Members.   The lies were easily disproved which should have halted all disenrollment activity.   Please read.

There were several statements that were stated as "fact" in the letter provided to the enrollment committee. This "information" was said to be enough to start the disenrollment process going.

1). They stated as a "fact" that a search of the public record revealed that Paulina Hunter never lived on the reservation, and that she was not on any of the reservation census records.

This statement is so silly and foolish I don't understand why the enrollment committee even gave it any weight at all. As a search of the public record revealed to the committee that she not only lived on the reservation, but that she was on all the census records until her death, recorded as a Temecula/Pechanga Indian.

2) Also stated as "fact" that public records found no evidence that Paulina Hunter had no Indian ancestry, much less Pechanga Temecula Indian ancestry (they stated that she was some white woman from Ohio) has also been PROVEN as WRONG, not only by certified documents showing her on the Indian census rolls for Temecula Pechanga for many years from 1893 until her death in 1899, but by deposition given by Dolores Tortuga and Jose David Rodriguez in 1915 that they knew her as a member of the tribe. I won't even address that the person THEY hired, they hired not us, also came to the conclusion that she was 100% Temecula/Pechanga Indian.

3). The deposition given by one of the oldest members of the Pechanga tribe Antonio Ashman in 1979 that he knew Paulina Hunter to be a member of the Band should not be taken lightly. As our chairman stated so well in the tribal meeting on June 2005 we should listen to elders when they say something, and when someone as old and respected like Antonio Ashman speaks we should listen (our chairman's own words).

The CPP repeatedly state that it is oral tradition of tribal recognition not written documents (of which we have provided in abundance), they say oral unless the person who gives the oral statement is dead or disagrees with there own stand.

The Hunter Family has been members of the Pechanga Band from its very beginnings, even before they were forced to relocate to the area known as Pechanga. We were members in the Original Temecula Village before the relocation to the area known as Pechanga (this is easily verified from official certified documents on file).   It has only been recently that the Hunter family has been put into question by a very small minority in the tribe.

You might ask me if its a very few why hasn't the rest of the tribe put a stop to it. Well they did try a little over a year ago, in the largest gathering of our tribe in history they voted to STOP the disenrollment of the Hunter Family and to remove the disenrollment process from tribal law. Well this so shocked the small minority who had been trying to wrest control of the tribe from its members that they canceled all meetings for the next few months, and in secret behind closed and locked doors decided to overthrow the Tribes vote and continue with the disenrollment process. Once they had the Hunter family out they now have pretty much insured there control and takeover of the tribe as they further pad tribe membership with those new members whom they secretly enroll who will agree with there agenda.

How can they disenroll the Hunters when there was no disenrollment process in Tribal law? It was almost a year after the Tribe voted to end all disenrollment processes, and remove it from Tribal law that we were disenrolled.

It seems to me that since there was no disenrollment process in Tribal law, and it was voted to make it illegal to disenroll anyone (the disenrollment of the Hunters coming almost a year after this was passed into Tribal law) that this would make there disenrollment ILLEGAL.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Video: Our Sovereignty Is Not For Sale The Struggle for Indian Gaming

An interesting video by Tribal Attorney Tony Cohen documenting the struggle to gain gaming in California. It's primarily testimony before Kevin Gover  then with the BIA.    Please watch.

Notable that Pala created a firestorm by accepting a compact with Pete Wilson. It's obviously one sided, we see nothing from Pala on their accepting of the compact.  The Secretary of Interior approved the compact.

Neither do we see what tribes, under the guise of sovereignty have done to their people: Pechanga, Redding Rancheria, Snoqualmie, Picayune..   The signs of protest say don't send us back to welfare, when in fact, thats JUST WHAT tribes have done to their people.   Mooretown Rancheria is featured as is Santa Rosa.

USING SOVEREIGNTY LIKE A CLUB, to BLUDGEON THE WEAK is not what we thought self-reliance meant. Depriving Indians of their heritage, their education, their livelihood, their health care.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

On Tribal Disenrollments and the Beginning of the End of Sovereignty

This is a repost of my 2008 article:

In the 21st .Century, who would have thought that the Indian Wars would begin anew? This is not the war of racist whites who wanted to move west no matter who was hurt. This time, it's greedy Indians who want more money, no matter which tribal members they hurt. The 21st century Indian War is now Indian vs. Indian. Tribes such as Pechanga of Temecula, Redding Rancheria, Jamul of San Diego, Enterprise Rancheria are violating their members civil rights, eliminating them from tribal rolls and denying them their part of the tribe. And because of California Tribe's use of sovereignty, it can be "we just don't like you" or "we don't believe the evidence" (are you going to believe me or your lying eyes?), In California's Indian Country, wealthy casino tribes are gorging themselves with cash, the fruits of their casino, thanks to laws passed by the citizens of California. Prop 1A and Prop. 5 were passed overwhelmingly, thanks to ads that promised not to expand gaming and to help tribes with self reliance.

To the California populace, this meant that tribes would be able to take care of their own membership. Those living in poverty would be brought forth; non gaming tribes would benefit from a fund that gaming tribes would contribute to. A 'lifting of all boats' if you will. What has happened in that time has in fact helped some tribes. San Manuel of San Bernardino has developed their reservation from dirt poor to one of the wealthiest in the state and tribal members are definitely in the top 1/10th of income earners in California. And they are taking care of their people. Their population is limited, with fewer than 200 members. Morongo of Cabazon is another example of good governing. Sadly, some tribes could not stand to share their good fortune. Visions of more money, or living at San Manuel standards blinded some with greed and envy. The Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians is one such tribe. Blessed with an excellent location near a freeway and with easy access and a growing population, the Pechanga Resort and Casino was successful and thriving. With just over 1,000 adult members, the tribe was, by 2004 able to provide their members with a monthly per capita check of $15,000 and quarterly bonuses. Additionally, the tribe provided health care via Blue Shield, Dental, Eye and extra benefits for elders. Also included was educational assistance including college scholarships for which all was needed was a C average. Even John Kerry and G. W. Bush could have kept a scholarship.
But that wasn't enough for a splinter group of band members, the Concerned Pechanga People. This group of extremists made threatening advances on tribal enrollment committee members, storming offices demanding that people be disenrolled. The disenrollment process was initiated in a Salem-witch-trial like atmosphere. Letters saying, "I think that family should be investigated" and "there is a person from OHIO that had the same name, we think it was their ancestor. Never mind that one of the ancestors under investigation had land on the reservation for well over 100 years, given to them from President McKinley. The process has been recounted in the article from Harpers "A Paper Trail of Tears" detailing the ouster of the family of the original headman of the Pechangas, Pablo Apis. The evidence for Paulina Hunter's family is detailed in "Without a Tribe" an investigative report from KNBC-TV in Los Angeles. The investigation went on for months and as recounted in the piece, Pechanga refused to speak to KNBC until the day before the airing.
Comically, Pechanga had to buy a 30 second spot during February sweeps (a bit more costly) to tell their story. In watching the report, it was clear that Pechanga Chairman Mark Macarro was caught in a lie, and he was called on it by anchor Colleen Williams. The report featured noted anthropologist, Dr. John Johnson, curator of the Natural History Museum in Santa Barbara, and an expert in his field, possibly without equal. What is the significance of Dr. Johnson? Well, the Pechanga tribe hired him to research Paulina Hunter's ancestry. They went for the best and he found the truth about Paulina; she was indeed Pechanga, "100%" he said. Now keep in mind that this gentlemen has worked with California Mission Indians for decades, heavily researching Las Padrones, the historical record of the priests of Mission San Luis Rey (from which Luiseno comes)
Some authors, who are concerned that sovereignty issues outweigh any damage to families of disenrolled, ask the question: Are they violating tribal law or US law, because US law wouldn't apply to a sovereign nation. Well the answer is: They are violating tribal law. Pechanga's constitution requires open enrollment every January with specific requirements for enrollment. There is no blood quantum required; the requirement is lineal descent from an original Pechanga person.
Pechanga has a moratorium in place which has kept new members from joining the tribe. The moratorium is not authorized in the constitution. There was a petition brought forth to the tribe, it was ruled valid and voted upon. The moratorium, unconstitutionally, was passed. The Tribal Council explained that "the people have spoken" and it's now law until repealed. Later, when a petition was brought forth to end all disenrollment, it was ruled valid and voted upon, after the question of the Hunter family's disenrollment process was brought up, Chairman Macarro said, "all means all".
The people voted to end all disenrollments. The will of the people was spoken. Months later, the tribe was sent a letter saying that the Hunter family disenrollment couldn't be stopped by a vote of the people; they had to right to vote on enrollment matters. Okay so the people had a right to STOP new members coming in, but not to stop lifelong members from going out?   I think this answers the question of violations of law.
This is sovereignty that is wielded like a club, to beat down the weak, not for the good of the members, but to their detriment.   These websites and blogs can help answer questions, and there will be more articles like this one

Congressional Panel Looks to Reverse Supreme Court On Land/Trust Issue; Avoids Civil Rights Issues

Legislation seeking to expand the federal government's authority to place land into trust for Indian tribes drew a mixture of praise and criticism Tuesday, as the contentious plan came before a congressional panel.    Read the Press Enterprise story

Supporters argue that action is needed to end unequal treatment of tribes under current law. Opponents say the legislation ignores the concerns of non-Indians -- including Inland Southern California residents -- living near reservations. And, they say, it would pave the way toward unchecked proliferation of Indian gaming operations, particularly in California.

Debate over the U.S. Interior Department's power to take land into trust follows a 2009 U.S. Supreme Court decision that the agency does not have the authority to do so for tribes that were not federally recognized in 1934, when the landmark Indian Reorganization Act was passed.    Do we really want the BIA to have more power?

"This decision creates two classes of Indian tribes -- those that can have land in trust and those that cannot," Rep. Tom Cole told members of the House subcommittee on Indian affairs. "This two-class system is unacceptable."

Cole, R-Okla., authored one of two pending bills that would effectively reverse the Supreme Court and give the Interior Department power to take land into trust for tribes, regardless of when they became federally recognized. His version exempts land in Alaska from that authority, while the other version, introduced by Rep. Dale Kildee, D-Mich., applies to all federally recognized tribes.

Rep. Joe Baca, D-Rialto, (who gets a lot of money from tribes, and who fails to respond to Indians whose rights are violated.) is among 27 co-sponsors of the latter bill.

Broad Interior Department authority to place land into trust ignores concerns held by local communities affected by the expansion of reservations and gaming operations, critics say.

"Congress must deal wholly and fully with the impacts caused in states and local areas populated with communities of non-Indian citizens who will directly and financially suffer the impacts of federally created gaming," said Cheryl Schmit, director of Stand Up For California, a statewide group that focuses on gambling issues.

Supporters of the legislation note that 95 percent of the roughly 2,000 pending requests from tribes to have land taken into trust on their behalf are for non-gaming purposes. Schmit argued that tribes often change their stated plans for land once it is safely in trust, often to further their gaming operations.   WE discuss that issue HERE  where John Macarro said:   , "Once the land is placed in trust, a tribe has complete zoning and planning authority over it and can change land uses just as a county or city can change or update its general plan or zoning designations

Currently, there are 78 tribal groups seeking federal recognition in California, including 11 in the Southern part of the state, Schmit said. Additionally, there are 135 pending requests for land in the state to be placed into trust for recognized tribes.

Locally, the Soboba Band of LuiseƱo Indians is moving forward with a 535-acre project to include a new hotel and parking facility.

San Jacinto resident Jerry Uecker, who was at Tuesday's hearing but did not testify, said he is concerned about what the project will mean for the 1,200 people who live in three small communities adjacent to the land in question.

"The life they'd hoped for is at risk," he said.

In a statement issued Tuesday, Soboba leaders maintained that the project would not lead to expanded gaming, increase crime or hinder access to emergency services to the non-Indian residents in the area.
The proposed legislation would not affect the Riverside County tribe, since it was recognized prior to 1934.

Once land is into trust, tribes, including those like Pechanga, which practices apartheid on their reservation, can do what they want.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

AIRRO Executive Carolyn Lubenau Gives First Person Report of The Violations of Civil Rights in Indian Country

Carolyn Lubenau is a disenrolled member of the Snoqualmie Tribe of Washington State.   We've written about their issues HERE,   HERE  and Here...     Carolyn is on the board of AIRRO, which works to gain civil rights lost to individual Indians in this country.

She's written a piece at that tells HER story and those of the Snoqualmie 9.   Please share this with your friends, these stories must be told.   

Native Americans do not have the full rights of American citizens within their tribal governments. In 1924 the United States Congress passed the Indian Citizenship Act but it did not bestow on Native Americans guaranteed civil rights……just the right to vote in U.S. elections but it wasn’t until 1948 that it was even enforced and even today there are places where Native Americans cannot vote in our nation’s elections.

In 1968 Congress passed the Indian Civil Rights Act but yet again they did not include enforcement and the Act is just a suggestion to the tribe’s to grant civil rights to their citizens. It is not enforceable and the Federal courts say they do not have jurisdiction to hear Indian Civil Rights cases brought to them and deny Native Americans the rights everyone takes for granted.

On their Banishment:

In April of 2008, I and eight other tribal members were illegally banished from the Snoqualmie Tribe. Banishment in our tribe is a permanent exile, a death sentence. Our descendants are erased with us and our entire families punished for events they were hardly aware of. Most people when they hear the term “banished” think of violence, of lifetimes spent breaking the law and repeat offenders of serious crimes. Our banishment can only be described as an illegal, political maneuver.

Prior to the banishment, all nine of us have served on the Tribal Council. Five of the nine banished, including myself, were elected officials serving on the council immediately before the banishments. Three of the banished were our spiritual leaders; one is a minister in the 1910 Indian Shaker Church, the church my late Mother belonged to. One spiritual worker was banished for saying a prayer…..a prayer the tribal chief felt admonished his actions. They charged our minister with treason yet his only “crime” was being related to the five elected officials.


Thank you Carolyn for your support, and for taking the fight public.


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cherokee Supreme Court Orders another Recount. Chad Smith Declares it a Victory

The Tahlequah Daily Press is reporting that the Cherokee Supreme Court has just ordered the recounting, by hand, of all 15,000 ballots cast in the general election. Counting begins at 8:30 a.m. Saturday.

There have been some shenanigans, let's hope they get this right.

Former First Lady Betty Ford's Funeral Today; A Pechanga Connection Through The Hunter Family

The funeral for former First Lady Betty Ford is today in Palm Desert.  She was one of our most beloved First Ladies.

There is a Pechanga connection to Mrs. Ford:  In November 2010, we wrote an appreciation for Mary Ann Poole, a deceased Pechanga Tribal Member, who was posthumously removed from the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians:

In any case, Mary Ann was transferred to Wash DC and I went to Kami Seya, Japan. She spent an interesting year in DC. She worked for the National Security Agency (NSA) in their communications center.

Also, since she was one ofthe service women who had a Top Secret security clearance, (OP: Anyone think the Pechanga Tribal Council could get one? Or the Masiel Crime family?) and was deemed trustworthy, she was asked from time to time to babysit the kids of the "big wigs". She wound up sitting with Gerald Ford's kids on several occasions, a job that she was proud of, especially since he later advanced from just a US Congressman from Michigan to the US Presidency.

Sadly, Pechanga has severed that connection to the former President Gerald R. Ford and his family, by terminating the descendents of Paulina Hunter, whom Pechanga's own hired expert proved was Pechanga.   Pechanga also removed their page honoring their Veterans, because most of their veterans were from the Hunter family...

$100 Million Casino San Pablo: Tribe Says NO RAISES, Health Insurance Cuts for employees.

Casino San Pablo might be drawing all aces these days, but luck may have run out for its workers.

Cocktail waitresses, bartenders, floor walkers and other union members are locked in a contract stalemate with the tribe that owns the booming East Bay gambling hub.

At issue: the 350-member tribe earned over $100 million last year on gaming revenues, yet is refusing raises to its employees, whose average salaries are $9.50 an hour.

"It seems like they're turning their back on us," Isidoro Saravia-Ramos, 58, a dishwasher at the casino for 10 years, said through a translator. "We want the casino to succeed, but we as workers need to succeed, too."

The tribe offered a contract to its 200 union workers in May that included no raises and deep cuts in health insurance and other areas. New employees, for example, would start at 2002 wages and not be eligible for health insurance for a year.

Only four union members voted yes on the contract.

Read more:

Monday, July 11, 2011

Cherokee Court Stops Investigation to Count Envelopes

The Cherokee Nation Supreme Court interrupted its third day of hearing Principal Chief Chad "OUR SLAVES WERE WELL TREATED" Smith’s challenge to the June 25 election results to do a little counting of its own. Apparently, there are MORE ballots than envelopes.

Shortly after Chief-elect Bill John Baker’s team completed its direct examination of Terry Rainey, president of Automated Election Services, the court ordered an examination of the absentee ballots and the corresponding mailing envelopes.

Rainey told the court that comparison would be the best way to establish a base line to determine whether Smith’s allegations of “vanishing votes” are credible.

The envelope count, which according to observers concluded shortly before 9 p.m. Sunday, revealed that 6,166 envelopes were received by the election commission. A counting of the ballots was under way at press time.

Rainey’s comment came in response to the Baker camp’s inquiry about whether there was any evidence that would show the June 30 recount of the ballots cast in the principal chief contest was flawed.

Unofficial returns posted June 26 initially gave Baker an 11-vote lead, but the tribe’s election commission declared incumbent Chief Chad Smith the winner the next day by seven votes. A hand recount June 30 showed Baker beat Smith by 266 votes, 7,613-7,347, but with 251 fewer ballots.

Smith contends the difference in the totals for the initial results and the recount can be traced to the fact that 273 fewer absentee ballots were recorded during the recount. Baker contends those ballots were counted twice election night.

At least one election commissioner said a comparison of the number of envelopes and absentee ballots would help determine whether Smith’s theory of “vanishing votes” is sound.

“I would count the number of ballots and the number of envelopes,” Election Commissioner Martha Calico said in response the court’s inquiry about how to resolve the discrepancy.

The count of those items began about 4 p.m. Sunday. It was conducted behind closed doors at the commission’s offices with only the parties, their lawyers, the justices and election commission officials present. Media representatives were barred from the out-of-court proceedings.

Councilman Chuck Hoskin Jr., a spokesman for the Baker campaign, said the court’s decision to halt the proceedings and count the absentee ballots and envelopes won’t advance Smith’s case.

“The court is curious, but we think the same issues are the same issues — the recount was valid and was done very thoroughly,” Hoskin said. “But we are going to be patient and wait and see what the court has to say


Coyote Valley Tribe Votes to REMOVE Six Tribal Council Members; New Corruption Replaces OLD Corruption

New tribal leaders as corrupt as the OLD tribal leaders?

Seven years after federal law authorities swooped onto the Coyote Valley Reservation in Redwood Valley, seizing computers and documents to support allegations of wrongdoing by the tribal council, the tribe remains in upheaval.

Current tribal leaders, who helped oust the scandal-tainted former council, are now themselves the targets of a coup.

Two weeks ago, the Central California Bureau of Indian Affairs upheld a vote by the tribe's general membership to remove six of the seven council members and the tribal chief.

"They're doing the exact same thing (as the former council). Just not as blatant," said tribal member Correy Alcantra, who is leading the uprising and has been tentatively appointed to the council.

Change is not expected anytime soon. The incumbent council is expected to appeal the BIA decision, starting a process that could take years, Alcantra said.

The tribe's council chairman and its attorney did not return phone calls. Chief Richard Campbell said he doesn't believe the vote to remove him from office is legitimate.

"The way I see it personally, it's all going to die on the vine," he said. Campbell declined to comment further.

Alcantra's complaints against the incumbent council include that at least one member used tribal credit cards for personal use.

Several members of the prior tribal council were indicted on charges that included misuse of tribal and casino funds, but the case fizzled after several years and most of the more serious charges were dropped. By 2008, all that remained were a few charges of failure to pay taxes against two of the tribal leaders.


Friday, July 8, 2011

KNBC Reporter Mary Parks has Fans Looking to Keep Her On at KNBC

In april we reported that KNBC's Mary Parks was let go from the station.  That's distressing in itself as Mary did the interview of the victim of  Pechanga Security Guard Beating and wasn't afraid to ask the difficult questions.

We are pleased to report that there is NOW a Facebook Page looking to keep Mary Parks and you can access it at this LINK .      We need friends and allies to get our word out and since Mary would do the reports on the bad news from Pechanga, that should count for something.    If you are on FB, PLEASE join the fan page.

My understanding is that NBC VP Valari Staab is a decision maker:     Drop her a note.

Will California LOSE Indian Casino Money? If Compacts are Voided, Shouldn't We Allow Gambling in CA?

Schwarzenegger's failed coercion plan to wring dollars from the Rincon Tribe, could lead to California losing Indian Casino dollars.   Tribes will follow Pala's lead and look to renegotiate.    Should this be the time time for California to get into the gaming business?  We could regulate it, tax it and benefit from the dollars the we know tribes are keeping for themselves.

John Myers writes in Capitol Notes:

The final chapter in a fight dating back to the seeds of Rincon's anger in 2005 was written on June 27, when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the state's appeal of a lawsuit won by the tribe. That lawsuit was sparked by the deal former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger offered to renegotiate Rincon's original 1999 casino compact: a percentage of the profits for the general fund.

Rincon successfully argued that such a demand amounted to a tax, something states can't generally assess against tribes under federal law. In particular, the case highlighted the issue of tribal "exclusivity" to Nevada-style casino operations... something Schwarzenegger suggested was worth a cut of the action, but which Rincon argued it already possessed thanks to two voter-approved ballot initiatives.

The real question -- the $364 million question, in fact -- is whether the Rincon decision opens the door for the tribes that did sign those revenue sharing deals to stop sending money to Sacramento.

"I think we need to go in and reevaluate our situation," said Robert Smith, chairman of the Pala Band of Mission Indians near San Diego. In a phone interview on Wednesday, Smith said his tribe pays $18 million a year to the state's general fund and would like Governor Brown to consider changing that agreement.

While exactly how many of the 15 tribes that pay into the general fund are thinking the same thing isn't known, several sources confirm there are others. One that did so on the record is the United Auburn Indian Community in Placer County, according to tribal attorney Howard Dickstein. Dickstein has also represented Pala and is one of the architects of California's original tribal compacts.

"I think tribes that continue to contribute [money] have serious questions," he said in a phone interview. "It's a new ballgame."

With the actions of tribes like Picayune, Enterprise, Redding and Pechanga, can we really trust they want the best for all Californians?   In fact, didn't they swear to us, that their NEGOTIATED compacts with Schwarzenegger were what was BEST for California?    They would help balance our budget from deficits?    How is that working out for us?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The World Series of Poker MAIN EVENT is Underway

It's that time of year again!  The World Series of Poker is underway.   The good news?   Doyle Brunson has changed his mind about playing this year and is in the tournament.

Phil Hellmuth was defeatedn in the Players Championship, missing a chance at his 12th bracelet for the 3rd time this year. 

Good luck to all the players.   Who is your favorite?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

After Schwarzeneggers Incompetent Handling of Gaming Compacts; Pala Tribe Wants to Renegotiate

Arnold Schwarzenegger's legacy will be FAILURE.    Here's more evidence of that from Ed Sifuentes of the NCTIMES:

The Pala Band of Mission Indians in North County says it wants to renegotiate its gambling agreement with the state following the Rincon Band of Mission Indians' court victory last week against the state over casino payments.

Pala, which operates a casino and resort complex on its reservation east of Fallbrook, agreed in 2004 to pay millions into the state's general fund in exchange for more slot machines. The tribe pays about $18 million a year, said Pala Chairman Robert Smith.

The state's general fund is its main pot of money to pay for government operations. The state is partly resnposible for overseeing tribal gambling, which voters legalized

Then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger offered Rincon, which operates a Harrah's-brand hotel and casino near Valley Center, a similar deal but the tribe rejected the offer and sued the state in federal court. Rincon argued the payments amounted to an illegal tax and the courts agreed.

Rincon won the lawsuit last week after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the state's appeal of a lower court's decision.

Smith said Pala wants a new deal based on the court's decision.

"I think the revenue we pay to the state needs to be re-evaluated," Smith said.

The tribe is willing to keep paying but not into the general fund, Smith said. He would prefer that the payments be used to address local problems, such as law enforcement, fire protection and road improvements, the chairman said.

If other tribes follow Pala's lead, the state could lose hundreds of millions in revenue, making its budget woes much worse. Fifteen tribes, including Pala, pay a combined total of $360 million a year into the general fund, according to the state.

Thus far, no other tribes have stepped forward to renegotiate their agreements since last week's court decision. The Viejas Band of Mission Indians in East County, which has an agreement similar to Pala's, said last week that it has no plans to renegotiate.

Read more:

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July to All Original Pechanga's Blog Readers.

Independence Day 2011 marks the 6th year of termination for the Pablo Apish descendents from the Manuela Miranda family and the 5th year for the family of Original Pechanga Allottee Paulina Hunter, who Pechanga's expert proved was indeed Pechanga Indian.  It's been more than a DECADE for Moratorium people. We'd like to wish all readers across the county a very happy 4th of July.

We will continue to fight for our rights as Pechanga people and continue to work for the rights of all disenfranchised Native Americans.    America's independence was not won overnight and this struggle of ours, can't be won overnight either.

We must continue to educate our politicians and our local citizenry at every opportunity.   We've had some successes and success breeds success.   We need more friends and family to get involved and help keep the volume of the injustices perpetrated on Indian people...BY Indan people, mainly the corrupt tribal councils that proceed in stripping civil and human rights from Indian people across our country.

Please HELP us.  How?  By passing this blog along to your friends, by visiting here often and by sharing the link  on your Facebook and MySpace pages.   You can help us be more visible and increased visibility is one way for us to combat the excessive amounts of money that gaming tribes have.    We have already forced Pechanga to spend more money than they ever dreamed and we've shown their lies to Congress, causing them to lose an important water rights issue.    We are currently working on sanctions that the BIA Director Amy Deutschke told our teams were possible.   We expect that to have an effect.  

Happy 4th of July!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Hoopa Valley Tribe: Who Needs that First Amendment Anyway? Shuts Down Newspaper Over Controversial Articles.

The Hoopa Valley Tribal Council chairman shut down the tribe's newspaper through a memo sent Friday afternoon, citing financial issues and disagreement over controversial articles.
The Two Rivers Tribune, the tribe's newspaper for nearly 20 years, is a weekly newspaper distributed throughout Eastern Humboldt. According to the publication, it is the last Native-owned newspaper in California.
According to a copy of the memo sent to the Times-Standard, Tribal Chairman Leonard Masten directed that the newspaper be closed immediately. He said the tribe was losing money by subsidizing the paper, but also pointed to recent controversial articles focused on marijuana issues and an interview with Bruce “Jason” Stallings-Hunsucker, a man wanted for his alleged involvement in the shooting death of a well-respected Willow Creek resident.

Interim Managing Editor Allie Hostler said the memo, which is dated Thursday but was received by the paper around 1:30 p.m. Friday, came as a shock. She disputed the financial issues, citing her audit of the paper's financial records. Furthermore, she said, she's concerned about what this will mean for the paper's advertising contracts, which are active for another six months.

”It's just really disturbing that one man who didn't like our articles can basically take two decades worth of hard work on our part, and just close it,” Hostler said.

Read the rest of the story  HERE

Friday, July 1, 2011

UPDATED: Supreme Court RULES RECOUNT CERTIFICATION STANDS! Cherokee Recount Complete: BILL JOHN BAKER Defeats Chad Smith by 266 votes

UPDATE:  CN Supreme Court has ruled: Thursday night's recount certification stands.

UPDATE:    Officials at CN holding an emergency hearing this morning at the election board. Chief Chad Smith's campaign seeking to de-certify yesterday's recount.  This is after a full hand recount showing his "election" by 7 votes was a sham..... The Tahlequah Daily Press is reporting that all media has been removed by Election Commission Chairman  Roger Johnson.

There seems to be something fishy going on in the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.

First result, Bill John Baker wins, suddenly Chad Smith, the incumbent finds 20 votes to be declared Principal Chief.  A court ordered recount and Bill John Baker wins by 266 votes.     The election commitee has some explaining to do don't you think?

Is their motto,  A LIE IS AS GOOD AS THE TRUTH, if you can pull the wool over their eyes?

A court-ordered recount of last Saturday's principal chief election of the Cherokee Nation indicates challenger Bill John Baker defeated incumbent Chad Smith by 266 votes.   What?  Not 10, not 20  but 266 votes?

Those recount tallies were just certified by the election commission.

The Tahlequah Daily Press will have the full story tomorrow.   They have been terrific in getting the word out