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LAKEPORT, CALIFORNIA - The Elem Indian Colony of Pomo Indians are asking for public support in attending the hearing in an effort to help protect Rattlesnake Island on Clear Lake, about 125-miles north of San Francisco.
Elem Indian Colony of Pomo Indians
Rattlesnake Island lies a few hundred feet offshore from the Elem Indian Colony, on the eastern end of Clear Lake. It is a burial grounds, village site and ceremonial grounds that has been the spiritual center of the Elem community of Southeastern Pomo for thousands of years.
The Tribe is seeking public support at the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday, from 1:30 - 4:30 pm at 255 Forbes Street, Lakeport, California.
At issue is the final decision in whether or not to complete an Environmental Impact Report for Rattlesnake Island. Closing statements by both parties will be allowed and the Board of Supervisors will go into deliberation and make a final decision on John Nady's appeal of the County Planning Commission decision to complete an Environmental Impact Report, which calls for a focused study of the archaeological and cultural resources located on the Island.
John Nady is a wealthy businessman, who pioneered wireless technology. His company, Nady, Inc. is the source of the wireless microphones of touring singer and musicians in the music industry.
The island is teeming with diverse plant, animal and bird life, including many species that continue to be utilized by the Pomo. Archeologists have identified sites on Rattlesnake Island dating back as far as 14,000 years, some the earliest documented evidence of human occupation in this hemisphere.
The island was stolen from the Pomo in 1877, when it was deeded to settlers as private property in a supposed "clerical error". Ever since that time, the Elem Pomo have been fighting to regain traditional ownership of the land, and to halt various development projects.
In 1970, Pomo people re-occupied Rattlesnake Island to prevent the Boise-Cascade Corporation from building luxury vacation houses on the ancient burial and settlement grounds - they were eventually removed by force. The entire area surrounding the Elem Indian Colony is an extremely toxic Superfund site, the location of an open-pit mercury mine that operated for over a hundred years and continues to contaminate the surrounding area, such that fish cannot be eaten and spring water cannot be consumed.
The Elem Indian Colony of Pomo Indians is a federally recognized tribe.
posted September 6, 2011 8:30 am edt
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