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The state of New Jersey is suing the Ford Motor Company for dumping paint sludge and other toxic waste on Ramapough Lenape land for decades beginning in the 1960s.
Tribal members say the contamination is the source of numerous illnesses and even deaths.
CBS News reports the land contains arsenic, chromium, lead, and other toxins even after several clean-up attempts. The waste comes from the Mahweh auto plant that dumped thousands of tons of waste in the forests and mines in the area.
The commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection told CBS the automaker’s actions are the definition of environmental injustice. The state is seeking an undisclosed amount of money.
Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. has reversed a decision to stop flying the Oklahoma state flag at tribal facilities. KOCO-TV news reports Hoskin signed an executive order earlier this month banning the state flag on Cherokee properties. But he changed his mind after council members and citizens objected.
Hoskin originally said putting the Oklahoma flag on par with the tribal flag was inconsistent with tribal sovereignty. He says he’s since been persuaded by concerns that the action could deepen divisions between the tribe and the state.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruling that handed tribes expanded criminal jurisdiction has been the source of disagreements between tribes and Gov. Kevin Stitt (R-OK).
The state of New Mexico has reached a $32 million settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over the 2015 Gold King Mine Spill. Contractors working for the EPA caused the release of thousands of gallons mine drainage into the San Juan and Animas Rivers.
The spill contained acids and toxic heavy metals that disrupted water use including drawdowns for drinking water and agriculture downstream on into the Navajo Nation.
The state filed suit against the federal government in 2016. Officials secured an $11 million settlement from the mining company on behalf of water users in 2021.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D-MI) rejected plans by the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians for an off-reservation casino and resort.
The proposal for the $180 million project has been in the works for more than 14 years. Because it’s not on tribal land, it needs both state and federal approval.
The Interior Department signed off on the plan in December 2020 starting the clock for the state to act.
M-Live.com reports Gov. Whitmer informed the U.S. Department of Interior that she can’t approve the Little River Band project until she knows there’s a decision on the status of the Grand River Band, which would like pursue their own casino if they are granted federal recognition.
The Little River Band already operates a casino in another city.
Gov. Whitmer told Interior she would be willing to reconsider the project once the Grand River Band’s status is decided.
The Peacock Network show “Rutherford Falls” is premiering its second season. The comedy show has a Native storyline supported by a number of Native writers, producers and actors. KLCC’s Brian Bull catches up with Lakota actress Jana Schmieding about what’s in store for the show.
Schmieding plays Reagan Wells, a member of the fictitious Minishonka Tribe and friend to Nathan Rutherford, heir to the town’s colonial legacy. That legacy – and their friendship – was tested last season, but season 2 suggests they’re on to new misadventures.
Reagan: “Adversity makes us stronger.”
Nathan: “No Reag, is this sweater too sexy?”
Reagan: “For what?”
Nathan: “How about a vest?”
Schmieding says with the world-building of “Rutherford Falls” established in season 1, the writers cut loose with season 2.
“It’s a very comedy-forward season. We have things like a Halloween episode, we are doing some goofy stuff. Reagan decides that she wants to apply for a plot of land on her rez, so we see tribal bureaucracy this season, we have a pretendian episode.”
“Rutherford Falls” has won praise for its portrayal of Native Americans, due to its team of Indigenous writers.
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