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The Week in Review
ending March 22
Tribal officials testify before Senate Indian Affairs Committee on energy legislation. March 19, 2003. Photo NSM.   Tribal officials testify on energy legislation Photo © NSM.
Want In The Hoop's list of the week's Winners and Losers? Wait no more.

Missed the week's stories? Get a complete listing here.

Reach of Supreme Court rulings debated
It's only been a couple of weeks since the Supreme Court handed down two rulings affecting the trust relationship but Indian Country is already feeling the impact.

Legislation meant to increase tribal control over their own resources could be an early casualty. Tribal and Indian leaders said the bills in question would lessen the federal government's responsibilities over valuable trust assets. Both bills include provisions that limit U.S. liability.

But not everyone says the decisions are negative. Elouise Cobell, the lead plaintiff in a trust lawsuit, says one ruling bolsters the rights of individual Indian beneficiaries.

Get the Story:
Cobell says trust claim bolstered (3/17)
NARF: What's wrong with Indians winning? (3/17)
Pundits got it right, mostly (3/19)
Tribes weigh effects of energy legislation on trust (3/20)
Navajo Nation tussles with new trust 'philosophy' (3/20)
Interior opposes oversight in energy bill (3/20)
Court official urges release of Slonaker testimony (3/20)
Commentary: Supreme Court loses its way on trust (3/20)
DOI doesn't like what NCAI has to say on trust (3/21)
DOJ seeks to limit payment for court officials (3/21)

Tribes could rely on homeland security
Tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians is always a tricky area of Indian law, with tribes almost always ending up on the losing side of the stick.

That almost happened when a federal appeals court considered whether the Fort Peck Tribes of Montana can impose a utility tax on a railroad company. Rather than strike down the tax as unlawful, the court said the tribes can justify it by showing how the company's operation threatens their health, welfare and safety.

Get the Story:
Mont. tribal tax up in the air (3/18)
Mont. tribes have hope on taxation ruling (3/20)

more stories
There's still more to read in the recap of the top stories.


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