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Native Brief: SEATTLE - Third Regional Tribal Consultation on Cobell Trust Land Consolidation Program will take place today. Tribal Leaders from the Northwest Region and Other Regions will attend the event at the Tulalip Resort Casino in Tulalip, Washington.
The Cobell Settlement will address the Federal Government's responsibility for an historical accounting of Individual Indian trust accounts and trust mismanagement claims on behalf of more than 300,000 individual Indians.
The $3.4 billion Cobell settlement was approved by Congress on November 30, 2010 (Claims Resolution Act of 2010) and signed by President Obama on December 8, 2010. A fund of $1.5 billion will be used to compensate class members for their historical accounting, trust administration and asset mismanagement claims.
Deputy Associate Secretary Meghan Conklin at the United States Department of the Interior, and Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Director Michael Black, will attend the third regional government-to-government tribal consultation regarding the Trust Land Consolidation component of the Cobell Settlement.
In addition, to address the continued proliferation of thousands of new trust accounts caused by the "fractionation" of land interests through succeeding generations, the Settlement establishes a $1.9 billion fund for the voluntary buy-back and consolidation of fractionated land interests. The land consolidation program will provide individual American Indians with an opportunity to obtain cash payments for divided land interests and free up the land for the benefit of tribal communities. Up to $60 million of the $1.9 billion will be set aside to provide scholarships for post secondary higher education and vocational training for American Indians and Alaska Natives.
posted September 16, 2011 6:10 am edt
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