Miccosukee Tribe removes Chairman Colley Billie from office

Miccosukee Tribe Chairman Colley Billie speaks at the Interior Department in Washington, D.C. June 1, 2015. Photo by Andrew Bahl for Indianz.Com

Members of the Miccosukee Tribe of Florida removed Chairman Colley Billie from office last Thursday.

A petition accused Billie of financial mismanagement, The Miami Herald reported. Tribal members said he removed $82 million from a reserve account tied to an ongoing taxation dispute. They also blamed him for declining gaming revenues.

“Colley Billie has failed to perform the duties of chairman and protect the resources and follow the ordinances and laws of the tribe,” the petition quoted by the Herald stated.

Prior to his removal, Billie had been trying to prevent the Internal Revenue Service from obtaining documents about the tribe's per capita payments. The tribe and its members could be on the hook for more than $1.1 billion in taxes, penalties and interest, the Herald reported, citing documents from a state court lawsuit.

As part of a federal case, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in June rejected Billie's claim of sovereign immunity and ordered him to comply with an IRS summons. Since he's now out of office, he presumably can't be held accountable for failing to turn over the documents requested by the IRS.

Get the Story:
Miccosukee Tribe ousts leader over $1 billion tax dispute with IRS (The Miami Herald 11/11)

11th Circuit Decision:
US v. Billie (June 1, 2015)

Related Stories
Appeals court opens leader of Miccosukee Tribe to IRS summons (06/02)
Miccosukee Tribe fires attorney after being hit with huge fine (05/12)
Miccosukee Tribe wins decision in dispute over fees paid to court (01/27)
Federal judge hits Miccosukee Tribe lawyer with $1M in sanctions (01/16)
Judge delays contempt decision for chairman of Miccosukee Tribe (12/23)
Chair of Miccosukee Tribes faces contempt over dispute with IRS (12/09)
Widower must pay $72K to Miccosukee Tribe after losing appeal (10/15)
Miccosukee Tribe reclaims nearly $5M in wrongful death case (09/25)
Court won't make Miccosukee Tribe pay $4.1M in wrongful death (07/03)
Judge threatens chairman of Miccosukee Tribe with daily fines (11/05)
Miccosukee Tribe asked to pay $3.2M for wrongful death case (06/21)
IRS requests contempt order for chairman of Miccosukee Tribe (10/31)
Attorneys for Miccosukee Tribe facing ethics investigations (04/06)
Miccosukee Tribe accuses another law firm of taking millions (4/3)
Judge accused of bias after making 'peace pipe' comments (03/27)
Miccosukee Tribe puts dollar figure on per capita back taxes (2/13)

Join the Conversation