Maine tribes seek changes to settlement acts
The Maine Tribal-State Work Group met on Wednesday to consider changes to tribal settlement acts.

The Penobscot Nation, the Passamaquoddy Tribe, the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians and the Aroostook Band of Micmac Indians received federal recognition and settled their land claims through special acts of Congress. The tribes say they paid too high a price and lost some of their sovereign rights.

"The Settlement Act doesn’t work because it tries to make us something we are not," said Butch Phillips, a Penobscot elder who sits on the work group, The Bangor Daily News reported. "We are first, last and always Indian tribes, not creatures of the state."

The settlement acts place the tribes, for the most part, under state law. The courts have ruled against the tribes in recent sovereignty disputes.

The work group will meet again and propose changes to the settlement acts by December 5.

Get the Story:
Bangor: Tribes, state to amend acts (The Bangor Daily News 10/4)

Relevant Laws:
Maine Tribal Settlement Acts

Relevant Links:
Maine Indian Tribal-State Commission -

Related Stories:
Maine tribes lose sovereignty in EPA water case (8/9)
Maine sovereignty case headed to Supreme Court (7/9)
Maine tribe loses sovereignty dispute with state (4/18)
EPA allows state jurisdiction over Maine tribal lands (12/3)

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