Tribe won't reveal plans for settlement funds

Use of $18 million is considered confidential

Print Article

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe is not revealing how it will use $18 million it just received from a federal settlement over mismanagement of tribal money and trust lands, said the tribe's legislative director on Wednesday.

"The tribe considers its use of the settlement proceeds as confidential," Helo Hancock said, confirming that the tribal council made that decision.

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe received the funds about a month ago, Hancock said, as part of the federal government's settlement of tribal trust claims with 41 tribes.

The U.S. government announced this April it would pay tribes more than $1 billion for failing to adequately oversee the finances of tribal lands the federal government manages in trusts.

Hancock said that has included failing to transfer funds to the tribes from mineral leases and timber harvest on tribal property.

It is unknown where those dollars went, Hancock said.

"It's important that people understand, this is like a reimbursement for tribal dollars that were lost, that came up missing over decades of mismanagement," Hancock said.

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe wasn't appropriately compensated in the past for agricultural and timber interests on its trust land that was managed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, he said.

There's no way to know if the settlement covers what the tribes should have collected, Hancock noted.

"It's difficult to say, was this the exact amount, that makes everything whole?" he said. "No, but it's definitely a step in the right direction."

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe has about 2,200 enrolled members, Hancock said. He confirmed a study that showed the tribe has a $309 million economic impact a year on the region.

About 25 percent of the tribe's 345,000 reservation acres are trust land, Hancock said.

The Nez Perce Tribe in North Idaho also collected $33.7 million earlier this month as part of the settlement, according to the Associated Press.

The tribe has announced that $3 million will go to the Native American Rights Fund, and the rest will be distributed to individual tribal members.

Each of the 3,500 members will receive roughly $8,600.

Coeur d'Alene Tribe Chairman Chief Allan was invited to speak at the White House in April about the settlement, which Hancock lauded as a great honor.

"At some point you have to try to wrap these things up and start moving forward," Hancock said.

Print Article

Read More Local News

The search for Roberta Sunday

June 23, 2017 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press COEUR d'ALENE — Robert Martin's platoon was sent to check out an enemy bunker complex that had been hit with heavy airstrikes. He heard a coughing sound. "In this one bunker I found three dead ...

Comments

Read More

Putting children first

June 23, 2017 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press COEUR d’ALENE — Nearly 200 elementary-age children in the Lakeland School District come to school with growling tummies on Monday mornings. But the Rathdrum Lions Club Foundation, with a generous do...

Comments

Read More

Travel broadens horizons ... and you

June 23, 2017 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press For the record, I never knew Augustine of Hippo personally. Fair enough, I may have celebrated a few birthdays and there’s now a bit of gray in my beard — but this man lived in the fifth century. O...

Comments

Read More

Grills get an upgrade at North Idaho College beach

June 23, 2017 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press Looking for a place to barbecue near Coeur d’Alene’s waterfront? There are some brand-new grills at North Idaho College’s beach area ready for the public to use. A total of 36 cooking grills are...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 664-8176
215 N. Second St
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814

©2017 The Coeur d'Alene Press Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X