Native Americans

Northwest Fire Season Stretches Tribal Resources Thin

Oct 4, 2012
Inciweb

Fire crews are pushing back against a new blaze near Omak, Wash. The 5,000-acre wildfire on the Colville Indian Reservation has already destroyed two homes and forced other residents to evacuate. The Northwest’s busy fire season has taken a toll on tribal lands this year.

Columbia River Indian tribes are opposing a ballot measure that would ban commercial gillnet fishing in Oregon. Reporting for EarthFix, Courtney Flatt has more.

Gas station owners in Washington have won the right to proceed with a lawsuit against the state. They’re challenging the policy of gas tax refunds to Native American tribes who operate their own gas stations. Olympia Correspondent Austin Jenkins has more on the implications.

An audience of thousands is expected at the port of Olympia this Sunday to witness the conclusion of the annual Northwest Indian canoe journey.

Franz Jantzen / supremecourt.gov

Northwest tribes stand to receive big payments from the federal government after a U.S. Supreme Court decision Monday. Here’s the upshot of the ruling: the government has to uphold contracts with American Indian tribes, even if Congress shortchanges those deals.

A California American Indian tribe Tuesday asked federal regulators to order the removal of four dams on the Klamath River. The tribe says a restoration plan for the river is stalled. Amelia Templeton reports.

Oregon Bans American Indian Sports Mascots In Schools

May 17, 2012
Photo Credit: Colin Fogarty / Northwest News Network

Native American-themed sports mascots will no longer be allowed in Oregon public schools. That's the decision Thursday by the state Board of Education. The vote was 5 to 1.

Photo by Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

Since the 1970s, U.S. policy toward American Indian tribes has been to encourage economic independence. Tribal casinos are probably the most visible symbol of that policy. These days, tribes are diversifying into other businesses. In 2005, the Chehalis Indian tribe in southwest Washington partnered with a Wisconsin-based water park chain to build a destination resort. The state of Washington, in turn, granted the project tax exempt status. But now, correspondent Austin Jenkins has obtained internal state documents that question whether Great Wolf Lodge really is a tribal entity and eligible for favorable tax treatment.

Photo by Chris Lehman / Northwest News Network

Fifteen Oregon schools may have to change their sports imagery soon. A state panel could vote later this month [May 17] on whether to ban Native American-themed mascots. The proposal faces resistance, as Salem Correspondent Chris Lehman found on a visit to the Willamette Valley town of Molalla.

This fall, Denise Everhart's son will become the fifth generation in his family to attend Molalla High School. He plans to play football.

Everhart: "He will be on the field as an Indian."

Photo credit: U.S. Dept. of Justice. / U.S. Dept. of Justice.

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho -- A landmark settlement announced this week between the federal government and American Indian tribes is expected to have long-term effects beyond the $1 billion in the agreement. Nine Northwest tribes are part of the deal: Coeur d’Alene, Nez Perce, Shoshone-Bannock, Colville, Spokane, Tulalip, Makah, Nooksack, Swinomish.

Pages