indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439
Dynamic Homes
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Delvin Cree: Cobell brings millions to Turtle Mountain members
Friday, December 14, 2012
Filed Under: Cobell | Opinion
More on: delvin cree, elouise cobell, north dakota, tmbci
 
Elouise Cobell, the lead plaintiff of the Cobell v Salazar class action lawsuit would be a happy woman today, knowing beneficiaries in the case will finally be receiving compensation for the mismanagement of individual Indian money (IIM) accounts held in trust by the federal government.

Though payments will not be close to what beneficiaries are owed, many will accept what is being offered. A total of 350,000 beneficiaries will be compensated and will share in the $3.4 billion settlement.

A woman with extraordinary leadership, Cobell battled the government for 15 years before she passed away late last year from cancer. In a case that was filed in 1996, she fought on behalf of individual Indians who have lost royalties due to oil and gas, farming, timber and other activities on their trust lands.

A settlement in the case was announced in December 2009. A $3.4 billion dollar deal was made but opposition in Congress slowed the historical case to a halt. One concern among class members during this time frame was that many have died waiting for Cobell to be settled. As many as 12,000 beneficiaries died before seeing their share of the settlement.

A year later, in December 2010, Congress finally approved the settlement. As the case moved forward through court proceedings a few appeals would be filed by beneficiaries, bringing the settlement to another standing point. The individual appeals would later be thrown out and the case continued to move towards distribution. After the many hurdles in the case, a judge recently ordered payments to 350,000 beneficiaries.

According to the Cobell web site, the settlement will include payouts to two groups of class members:
1) Historical Accounting Class members - Had an open individual Indian money account (IIM) anytime between Oct. 25, 1994 and Sept. 30, 2009.
2) Trust Administration Class members - Had an IIM account recorded in currently available data in federal government systems anytime from approximately 1985 to Sept 30, 2009.

Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians
As the Cobell settlement moves ahead, members of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa have been waiting eagerly as it inches toward the distribution process. Many have interest on fractionated allotments in the state of Montana, northern South Dakota and other areas across North Dakota.

According to David Smith, a member of the Cobell legal team, 350,000 beneficiaries will share in the Cobell Settlement. Of that, 15,441 Turtle Mountain tribal members will benefit from the $1,000 Historical Accounting Class payment with a dollar amount totaling $15.441 million.

The Trust Administration Class payment which will come at a later date. That payment will be paid out to 25,421 from Turtle Mountain. Beneficiaries in the Trust Administration Class will be paid $800 -- plus a share of the balance of settlement funds based on the activity on their trust lands. The total amount is estimated to be around $26.8 million.

Smith also stated there are Historical Accounting Class members whose "whereabouts are unknown and have no contact information. The Cobell web site noted that 40,000 are shown as "whereabouts unknown" and another 10,000 have no contact information in records furnished by the Department of the Interior.

In further information provided by Smith, he said it was important for beneficiaries of the Historical Accounting Class who are not receiving statements on their IIM account to file a Claim before March 1, 2013, a deadline set by the court.

More information is available by calling 2 toll free numbers. 1-800-961-6109 or 1-866-383-6554 or going to the Cobell site www.indiantrust.com. The mailing address is:

Indian Trust Settlement
P.O. Box 9577
Dublin, OH 43017-4877

Delvin Cree is a freelance journalist. He is a daily contributor to indianz.com and Indian Country Today Media Network, both national news sources for Indian Country.


Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:

Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Author brings Lakota heritage to stewardship (4/27)
Lakota Country Times: Cobell scholarship fund being put to use (4/27)
Steve Russell: Same-sex marriage back before Supreme Court (4/27)
Terese Mailhot: The epidemic of early death on the reservation (4/27)
Jean-Luc Pierite: School makes bad choice with fake headdress (4/27)
Peter d'Errico: Pope fails to address genocide of Native peoples (4/27)
Editorial: States need help dealing with newly recognized tribes (4/27)
Senate panel takes up bill to halt Tohono O'odham Nation casino (4/27)
Small Alturas Rancheria runs casino but can't get agree on much (4/27)
White House to host first-ever Native youth conference on July 9 (4/24)
Native Sun News: Northern Cheyenne Tribe fires casino manager (4/24)
Lakota Country Times: Timothy Standing Soldier passes on at 54 (4/24)
Mark Trahant: Invest in our Native youth for long-term success (4/24)
James Giago Davies: True believerism and comic book solutions (4/24)
Brandon Ecoffey: Oglala Sioux Tribe must act on legal marijuana (4/24)
Ed Rice: Cleveland team comes up with excuse for racist mascot (4/24)
White House Blog: Recognizing tribal Climate Action Champions (4/24)
House subcommittee looks at poor conditions at Indian schools (4/24)
Navajo actress was put in darker makeup for Adam Sandler film (4/24)
Eastern Cherokee group plans lawsuit over tribal council raises (4/24)
Column: Commission takes on truth and reconciliation in Maine (4/24)
Senate votes to confirm Loretta Lynch as next attorney general (4/24)
ICT interview with confirmed NIGC Chairman Jonodev Chaudhuri (4/24)
Dave Palermo: Tribes in California assert right to Internet poker (4/24)
Pokagon Band casino remains a concern for Indiana lawmakers (4/24)
Pojoaque Pueblo places casino manager on administrative leave (4/24)
White Earth Nation promotes tribal members in casino positions (4/24)
Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux student vies for Miss Indian World (4/23)
Lakota Country Times: Tribal citizens named to education board (4/23)
Ivan Star: Struggling with the warrior heritage in Indian Country (4/23)
Dana Lone Elk: Lakota people still carry on fight of Crazy Horse (4/23)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee passes bill to renew NAHASDA (4/23)
BIA faces fire over latest reforms to federal recognition process (4/23)
Opinion: First Lady brings truth with remarks about Native youth (4/23)
Incoming leader of Navajo Nation stresses importance of youth (4/23)
Native actors storm off set of Adam Sandler film in New Mexico (4/23)
Marijuana seen as new frontier in tribal economic development (4/23)
Senate approves anti-trafficking measure with tribal provisions (4/23)
Interview with Gyasi Ross about spoken word release Isskootsik (4/23)
Blackfeet Nation launches campaign to ban drilling at sacred site (4/23)
Cherokee Nation celebrates births of first calves from bison herd (4/23)
Burns Paiute Tribe investigates fire that destroyed two bulidings (4/23)
Kaibab Paiute Tribe welcomes designation as 1st dark sky nation (4/23)
University of Minnesota sees surge in Native student enrollment (4/23)
Editorial: Minnesota tribes work together to address treaty rights (4/23)
Editorial: Maine governor fails to treat sovereign tribes as equals (4/23)
Brazil to host inaugural World Indigenous Games this September (4/23)
Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation probes woman's death at casino (4/23)
Tohono O'odham Nation vows defense for off-reservation casino (4/23)
Seminole Tribe talks with lawmakers about Class III casino deal (4/23)
Editorial: State needs assurances from Quapaw Tribe on gaming (4/23)
Native Sun News: Tribes take DOI to task over grizzly bear policy (4/22)
Native Sun News: Lakota rodeo legend Howard Hunter passes on (4/22)
Bill John Baker: Cherokee Nation language programs are working (4/22)
White House Blog: Improving the lives of Native American youth (4/22)
more headlines...


Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.