FROM THE ARCHIVE
Judge accommodating schedule for Norton
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2001

Although he has added a new contempt charge for Secretary of Interior Gale Norton, a federal judge today said he would accommodate her schedule, which includes a formal consultation session with tribes over a proposed reorganization of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

With a contempt trial starting Monday, tribal leaders feared Norton would not be able to attend the meeting, which is being held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on December 13. "It wouldn't be good for her not to show up," said Ron Allen, the chairman of the Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe of Washington.

Like a number of other tribal leaders from other parts of the country, Allen is planning to attend the session, the first on a controversial proposal to strip the Bureau of Indian Affairs of its trust responsibilities. Norton wants to hand these core duties to a new Bureau of Indian Trust Assets Management.

Of the meeting, Allen said he expected 500 people to show up to the Hyatt Regency Hotel on 330 Tijeras Street NW. The meeting starts at 9 a.m.

Beyond Albuquerque, Deputy Secretary J. Steven Griles is holding a meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on December 20. It will be held at the Doubletree Hotel on 7901 24th Avenue South.

Tentative dates and locations of additional meetings are as follows:
  • Oklahoma City, Okla., January 3, 2002
  • Rapid City, South Dakota, January 10, 2002
  • Palm Springs, Calif., January 17, 2002
  • Anchorage, Alaska, January 23, 2002
  • Washington, D.C., February 1, 2002
Congress will hold an oversight hearing on trust fund management on February 6, 2002, the House Committee on Resources announced yesterday.

The committee's ranking Democrat, Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va) has criticized Norton for not properly consulting with tribes before offering her overhaul.

Today on Indianz.Com:
Judge orders Interior to cut Internet access (12/6)
Norton delaying trust fund report (12/6)
New: Security contempt charge added (12/6)
Judge holding hearing today (12/6)
Transcript of Dec. 5 trust fund hearing (12/6)

Relevant Links:
Indian Trust, Department of Interior - http://indiantrust.doi.gov
Office of the Special Trustee - http://www.ost.doi.gov
Trust Management Improvement Project - http://www.doi.gov/bia/trust/tmip.htm
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton - http://www.indiantrust.com

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Norton files contempt defense (11/16)
Q&A on BIA Reorganization (11/16)
Developing: BIA stripped of trust duties (11/15)
Interior might need year on new agency (11/15)
Gover: Indian Country now 'weaker' (11/15)

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