Eastern Cherokee youth push for change in gaming per capita

Youth from the Junaluska Leadership Council present their per capita proposal to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Council on May 31, 2016. Photo from Facebook

Young members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians have convinced the North Carolina tribe to change its gaming per capita policy.

After hearing from the Junaluska Leadership Council, the council accepted the youth's proposal to stagger per capita payments for minors, The Smoky Mountain News reported. Instead of receiving a lump sum upon turning 18, young members will receive payments at ages 18, 21 and 25, the paper said.

The change brings an economic benefit to youth because they will no longer be hit with a huge tax bill after receiving the lump sum. For members turning 18 this year, the paper said they will pay more than $40,000 on their windfall of $130,000.

By staggering the payments, the youth will see an additional $109,000 over time, according to the paper.

The issue was debated during a budget session of the tribal council on May 31. The youth originally sought four payments but compromised on three.

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Staggered payments for Cherokee Minors’ Fund (The Cherokee One Feather 6/30)

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