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Tribal leaders condemned using Land Buy Back money to help the Tribal Court. 

At the January 23, 2023 full board meeting, a motion came before the Tribal Executive Board to amend a resolution that would allow the Tribal Court to take over $3 million from the Land Buy Back program. 

“I am deeply concerned about this,” councilman Terry Rattling Thunder said. 

With federal American Rescue Plan Act money the Tribes have been spending, why is this not being used, he asked. Tribal land is recurring income and money set aside to buy more land cannot be used for this, he said. 

Councilman Lawrence Hamilton said the Chief Financial Officers told them they could do this by amending the original resolution. 

Councilwoman Marva Chapman asked if there were other sources of money. This is something needed, but Land Buy Back is not the way. 

The motion was using “$3,789,800 out of the Land Buy Back to offset the cost of the Tribal Court Project, and leaving $621,022 to purchase land from the ARPA Revenue Loss.”

Chairman Floyd Azure said the motion should be sent back to committee.

Tribal Court has been planning a new building for a long time. The new court will be connected to the Tribal Jail, and the Department of Law and Justice will also be moved out there. 

The following are highlights from the full board meeting.



Two of the Tribal Committees have not met in a month.

The Constitutional Reform Committee and the Education Committee have been interrupted because of holidays the past few weeks.

Starting in December 26, 2022, the Constitutional Reform committee and the Education committee did not meet because of the Christmas holiday.

The next meeting of the committees was not held because of the full board meeting on January 9, 2023.

On January 16, 2023, both meetings were not held because the Tribes were closed in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. 



Tribal Enrollment Clerk Twyla Red Eagle brought processed enrollment applications for approval. 

Passed  were 19 Group members, 24 full members, ten name changes, 11 blood degree changes, two relinquishment’s and 16 group with five associate members. 



With a final vote of eight for, none opposed (four not voting) the TEB authorized North American Local LLC to assist local tribal members participating in the Federal Guideline and Affordable Connectivity Program (see separate story).


477 Program

Tribal council members approved of the Tribes applying for the Youth Build Grant (a 477 Program).. 

According to the committee minutes, Sunee Erickson of Work Force Investment, brought in a flier regarding the Youth Build grant that would prepare workers for quality jobs and promote the attainment of skills and knowledge necessary for success in a knowledge-based economy. 

Youth Build is meant to serve young people 16 to 24 years old who left high school with a diploma and have the greatest challenges in finding quality jobs. 

For those not familiar, The 477 Program is a critical program that builds capacity in Indian Country and Alaska Native villages by authorizing tribal governments and tribal organizations to integrate eligible employment, training, and related services programs that support workforce development and, thereby, reduce the high unemployment rates and poverty.



Administrative leave was approved for council members Pat Iron Cloud on January 17-20. 2023; Shannon Martell for January 17-18, 2023; Stacey Summers and Dana Buckles for January 17, 2023.



The council approved of a Tribal Credit Loan Waiver for an employee. 



The Tribes Natural Resources Program was given approval to seek out a federal grant for noxious weed control.

The grant is through the Bureau of Indian Affairs and is provided as part of the Invasive Species Program.

The goal of the grant is to assist the noxious weed component of this program. It provides on-the-ground management and treatment of noxious weeds on trust range lands, and provides financial and technical assistance to Bureau Agencies, Tribes, and Tribal entities to implement weed control projects on trust range lands.

The program also provides and supports weed awareness training and research into biological control, according to the Invasive Species Program website.



A new Home site Lease was approved for Steven V. Smith.

Tribal leaders voted to declare interest and request an appraisal for three separate allotments. One is for land located south of Fort Kipp with 23 owners, another located directly off US Highway 2 north of Fort Kipp with 45 owners, and one for an allotment near Scobey with one owner. 

John D. Anderson and Angeline Cheek were approved for enrolled member home site renewal leases. Cheek’s lease is for 16 acres, and Anderson is for 160 acres.

A non-enrolled member was approved for Larry See. 

The Tribes voted to declare interest and request an appraisal for Annette Linder for 13 undivided tracts. The Tribes are co-owners of this land, minutes state. 

Two large pieces of land were added to Range Unit 31, adding a total of 125 Assets Under Management (AUM’s) at the rate of $16 per AUM.  



Several agreements with various businesses and organizations were approved by the TEB.

The first is renewal of a contract with the B&W Compliance Inc., of California, for consulting services under the SBRRC for $29,809, effective from October 1, 2022, to September 30, 2023.

Another was for a contract with RezKast Media, LLC, for $29,700.



Century Companies Inc., a construction company based in Lewistown, was chosen to fix reservation roads.

Documents state bid the Tribes accepted Century’s bid of $732,792.92 to pave the Fort Kipp BIA road leading to the town. The other part of the bid is to pave the roads of Fort Kipp for $554,532.



The applications of allocations for 2023 was approved by the council.



Tribal leaders approved modifying a resolution that restricted spending for the Veteran’s Affairs Program.

The modification allows access to $140,000 to upgrade three vehicles using funding from ARPA.



A final draft of the Tribes intent to negotiate a new gaming compact with the State of Montana.

The motion is to send the Gaming Compact Negotiation Letter to Montana Governor Greg Gianforte to initiate the gaming compact negotiations, documents state.


Credit Card

The Tribal Council approved paying the Veteran’s Affairs program’s credit card bill for $439.55



To help with the growing epidemic of stray dogs, the TEB approved having the Fort Peck Housing Authority restart their animal control program.

This creates two extra jobs that will need to be filled.



A renewal contract between Spotted Bull Recovery Resource Center and Sweetgrass Psychological Services, PLLC at a cost of $10,000 in consulting fees.


Foster Care

One new kinship license and one regular/emergency license were granted by the TEB. This motion is on behalf of the Foster Homes Licensing Program.



A tribal meat packing plant may be closer to reality.

The motion approves of a proposed site of the modular meat processing plant Task Order 31 with Interstate Engineering Services, according to the motion passed by the TEB.


Tribal Park

Tribal Fish and Game have been working on to finish the half mile long trail.

Funds needed to complete the project is $75,000 to complete the trail, picnic shelter and picnic tables purchased, installation, benches, fencing and the trail-entrance culvert installation.



The Red Bird Woman Center was approved to apply for any and all grants available from the US Department of Justice for Victims of Crime.

About Post Author

Louis H. Montclair

A journalist on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation. Owner of tribaltimesnews.com
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By Louis H. Montclair

A journalist on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation. Owner of tribaltimesnews.com

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