KNBA - KBC

land into trust

Monday (Aug. 15), Alaska Attorney General Jahna Lindemuth announced she will drop an appeal in a case involving increased tribal jurisdiction through placement of tribal lands into trust.

Trust status transfers title to those lands to the federal government, and protects the land from taxation or seizure for debt. It gives tribes greater jurisdiction and access to federal funding. Trust lands include reservations. They’re a long-standing and common feature of land management for lower 48 tribes.

By Emily Files, KHNS - Haines

A Haines tribe is calling a recent decision by a U.S. Court of Appeals a “historic victory.” The Chilkoot Indian Association was among five plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging what is known as the “Alaska exception” – which prohibited Alaska tribes from placing their lands into federal trust. After years of litigation, including an appeal from the state, the federal court sided with the tribes. Alaska tribes can now petition for sovereignty over their lands.

ANWR also on Governor's list of topics to discuss with Presidnet

Gov. Bill Walker said he plans to emphasize the importance of the state being able to develop its resources during President Barack Obama's upcoming visit to Alaska.

Walker told reporters he anticipates some one-on-one time with Obama and plans to raise  the issue of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge with Obama.

Governor Bill Walker’s administration opposes tribes taking “land into trust.”

Monday the Alaska Department of Law filed a brief appealing court rulings in the Akiachak vs Jewell, Secretary of the Department of Interior lawsuit, which was first filed in 2006 by five Alaska tribes and an individual.

Sovereignty over tribal lands the subject of Gov. Walker meetings in rural Alaska

In 2006 tribes sued the federal government over the right to transfer tribal lands into federal ownership, or trust status, which would give tribes wider control over laws and management of lands, while restricting the power of the state. Trust status also has tax implications. The state of Alaska argued Alaskan tribal rights to apply to put land into trust were extinguished by the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971.

State's request for a delay is an attempt to find a political fix, according to tribes' attorney

Governor Bill Walker’s administration is seeking a delay in a long-running tribal sovereignty case, saying it wants to form a working group to explore policy issues and potential alternatives to continued litigation. But the tribes’ attorney says the state’s request for a delay is just a ploy to get around its loss in court.

Alaskan tribes allowed to exercise same rights as lower 48 tribes

Tribes in Alaska are celebrating a decision that allows them to apply to have lands placed into trust status with the federal government. The Department of Interior issued regulations settling a long-running dispute between Interior, the state of Alaska, and tribes over an interpretation of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971 (ANCSA).