President Obama signs bill to help Miami Nation revoke old charter

Leaders of the Miami Nation of Oklahoma, from left to right: First Councilperson Donya Williams, Second Councilperson Scott Willard, Chief Doug Lankford, Secretary-Treasurer Sarah Lawson and Second Chief Dustin Olds. Photo from Miami Nation

A bill to help the Miami Nation of Oklahoma resolve a longstanding governance issue has become law.

President Barack Obama signed H.R.533 today. The new law revokes an outdated charter that the tribe never used but which proved nearly impossible to revoke without an act of Congress.

“The corporate charter never served any productive purpose for the Tribe, Chief Douglas Lankford said. “It was an administrative housekeeping decision by our business committee to follow in the footsteps of other tribes who have gone to Congress, as required by this legislation, to ask for this document to be revoked.”

The charter was originally approved in 1940 as part of the Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act. Changing it would have required several steps at the tribal and federal level.

The House passed the bill by a voice vote on June 1. The Senate approved it by unanimous consent on June 24.

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