Narragansett Tribe bill generates opposition

A seemingly non-controversial bill to dissolve a corporation that was used to convey land to the Narragansett Tribe has run into high-level opposition in Rhode Island.

The Narragansett Indian Land Management Corporation was created by the state to hold land for the tribe pending federal recognition. The land came as the result of a land claim settlement that was eventually ratified by Congress.

The corporation no longer exists but Gov. Donald Carcieri (R), attorney general Patrick C. Lynch and the town of Charlestown are raising objections to its elimination. They claim the corporation protects state interests in tribal property and preserves state and town jurisdiction on the reservation.

The tribe argues that the Congressional act contains the same protections the state is worried about. The law subjects the settlement lands of the tribe to state civil and criminal jurisdiction.

Separately, a federal appeals court has ruled that lands taken into trust outside of the settlement are not subject to state law. The state is seeking a rehearing before the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals.

Get the Story:
Opponents: Bill strips law from Indian land (The Providence Journal 5/3)

Relevant Links:
Narragansett Tribe -

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