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News stories tagged with "land-claim"

Pataki, Mohawks Sign Land Claim Deal

Governor Pataki and the Akwesasne Mohawks yesterday formally signed an agreement to settle the 23 year-old Mohawk land claim in St. Lawrence and Franklin Counties. David Sommerstein has details.  Go to full article

Mohawks Proceed on Land Claim Deal

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe was awaiting word last night on a request to stay the 22-year old Mohawk land claim court case. The request comes after the traditional government in Akwesasne failed to approve a proposed settlement of the lawsuit, but it did throw its support behind two other tribal councils to pursue the deal. David Sommerstein explains.  Go to full article

Sorting Out Land Claim, Casino Deals

In the past month, Governor Pataki has announced four deals with native tribes to resolve land claims and build casino resorts in the Catskills. Three of those agreements are with tribes from outside New York. A fifth casino deal could pop up if the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe approves a proposed land claim settlement. The deals push the number of casino plans beyond the number approved by the legislature. The Governor wants the legislature to accommodate the new plans. Martha Foley talks with David Sommerstein to sort it all out.  Go to full article

Locals Speak Out Against Land Claim Deal

The St. Lawrence County legislature is expected to oppose a proposed settlement of the 22-year old Mohawk land claim. Legislators complain they weren't consulted before the deal was made public. At a finance committee meeting last night, lawmakers put off taking formal action against the deal. According to the Watertown Daily Times, the full Board will consider a resolution and a list of concerns about the settlement on Monday.
The agreement between three Mohawk councils and Governor Pataki still must be approved by tribal members by referendum on November 27th. The leaders of towns in St. Lawrence and Franklin counties that would be affected by the settlement are also speaking out. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Mohawks, State Reach Tentative Land Claims Deal

The three tribal councils that govern the Akwesasne Mohawk reservation near Massena yesterday announced a proposed settlement with New York State to end the 22 year-old Mohawk land claim. The councils represent the American, Canadian, and traditional constituencies in Akwesasne.
Under the deal, the state and federal governments would pay the Mohawks $100 million to compensate for land in St. Lawrence and Franklin Counties taken illegally in the early 1800s. The tribe would get Long Sault and Croil Islands on the St. Lawrence River, a 215 acre parcel on Massena Point, and the right to buy more than 13,000 acres of land within the claim area from willing sellers. The Mohawks would also get low-cost power, free SUNY tuition, and aboriginal hunting and fishing rights. Non-native towns would share a $10 million fund to compensate for lost tax revenues.
The agreement will now go before the Mohawk community for a referendum on November 27th. In a prepared statement, a spokesman for Governor Pataki said he was "encouraged by the good faith efforts being made by all sides to resolve this long-standing, historic dispute."
The proposed settlement is different from a deal reached last year by a previous tribal council in several key ways. David Sommerstein spoke yesterday with Chief Jim Ransom of the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe.  Go to full article

Disecting the Cayuga Land Claim & Casino Deal

Last week Governor Pataki and the Cayuga Nation, based in the Finger Lakes region, announced an agreement in principle on land claims and a casino in the Catskills. New York would pay the Cayugas $247.9 million to settle its decades old land claim lawsuit. The money would come from the state's share of gaming revenues from a casino resort the Cayugas would build in the Catskills. The Cayugas could then use that money to buy up to 10,000 acres of land. The deal would also establish tax parity between Cayuga-owned gas and tobacco stores and non-native stores. The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe, near Massena, signed a similar pact just over a year ago. But a tribal referendum killed the deal. David Sommerstein spoke with Jon Parmenter, a history professor at Cornell University and an expert in Iroquois history and politics. He says there are important differences between the Mohawk and Cayuga situations.  Go to full article

Iroquois Gather to Protest Casino Deals

Members of all six nations of the Iroquois Confederacy will gather tomorrow for the first time in decades. They plan to criticize casino and land claim deals pending in New York and the tribal councils that negotiated them. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Relief, Mistrust Among Mohawk Neighbors

The announcement of a landmark deal between Governor Pataki and the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe is starting to sink in amongst the tribe's neighbors. The agreement addresses tax parity and casino issues. But in the areas around the Akwesasne reservation near Massena, the big news is a proposed settlement to the Mohawks' claim that New York illegally took 15,000 acres of land in the 18th century. Today non-native residents own that land near the St. Lawrence River in northern St. Lawrence and Franklin counties. As David Sommerstein reports, some people are taking things in stride; others with trepidation.  Go to full article

Chief Alma Ransom on Historic Deal with State

David Sommerstein talks with Mohawk Chief Alma Ransom about why she signed the historic, but controversial, memorandum of understanding with Governor Pataki.  Go to full article

Pataki, Mohawks Reach Landmark Deal

Governor Pataki and the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe yesterday broke a two decades old impasse when they signed an agreement to settle the tribe's land claims in St. Lawrence and Franklin counties. The deal also addresses tobacco and gas sales to non-natives and a Mohawk-owned casino in the Catskills. David Sommerstein has more.  Go to full article

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