Red Lake Nation wants state to fire conservation officer

The Red Lake Nation wants the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to fire a conservation officer who said he was going to trespass on the reservation in order to start a court fight.

Greg Spaulding wrote a letter to chairman Floyd Jourdain Jr. that questioned the tribe's ownership and jurisdiction over Red Lake. He said his research indicates that the state owns all of the waters within the reservation.

Spaulding wrote his letter as a private citizen but his employment at the DNR is being called in question. Jourdain says he should be fired because his views differ from the state's position that the tribe owns Lower Red Lake and 60 percent of Upper Red Lake.

DNR Commissioner Gene Merriam said he will investigate. Merriam previously stumbled when he called treaties and fishing rights a system of "apartheid" in a speech to an anti-Indian group in April 2003.

Get the Story:
Letter questions control of Red Lake (The Minneapolis Star Tribune 5/21)

Relevant Links:
Red Lake Net News -
Red Lake Nation -
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources -

Related Stories:
Red Lake Nation celebrates revival of walleye (5/12)
Red Lake Nation prepares to open lake for fishing (03/24)
Minn. official called treaty rights 'apartheid' (5/13)