Editorial: Shinnecock Nation recognition on horizon
"The Shinnecocks were cheated out of beautiful and valuable land in Southampton 150 years ago by speculators seeking to bring a railroad to the south fork of Long Island. The tribe has protested ever since, and now its luck is finally changing.

Federal recognition of the Shinnecocks as a sovereign nation is on the horizon. The Bureau of Indian Affairs, which dragged its review process on for three decades, has settled an unreasonable-delay lawsuit by agreeing to make a preliminary decision by the end of the year. The odds are high that it will accept the tribe's petition, making formal approval likely by mid-2010.

This recognition would bring a deep satisfaction to the Shinnecock people, an acknowledgment of their nationhood by another nation. Members will be entitled to participate in federal programs that will improve their quality of life, which is in sharp contrast to the wealth of their neighbors.

Among the benefits are eligibility for special Department of Housing and Urban Development mortgages to build and improve homes, the type of financing that is impossible to get for communally owned land. There is also funding for Indian health and educational services, programs that tribes with less documentation have enjoyed for years."

Get the Story:
Federal recognition for Shinnecocks will affect tribe and LI (Newsday 5/30)

Also Today:
Shinnecock Nation Moves One Step Closer To Long-Awaited Recognition (Hamptons.Com 5/31)

Recent Court Decision:
Shinnecock Nation v. Kempthorne (September 30, 2008)

Related Stories:
Shinnecock Nation open to several casino sites (5/29)
Column: Shinnecock Nation nears a milestone (5/28)
Shinnecock Nation ready to negotiate with state (5/28)
BIA agrees to decision on Shinnecock Nation (5/27)
Shinnecock Nation expects recognition decision (4/6)