Tribal Governments

News & Analysis as of

FERC Meeting Agenda Summary - September 2015

In this issue: • Electric Items • Miscellaneous • Gas Items • Hydro Items • Certificates Below are brief summaries of the agenda items for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s September 17, 2015...more

A Tribal Financial Executive’s Guide to Deferred Per Capita Plans

With the top tax bracket at nearly 40 percent, Indian tribes making substantial per capita distributions are asking what they can do to reduce their members’ tax liabilities. One option to consider is a deferred per capita...more

EPA’s Clean Power Plan: A Regional Analysis

EPA’s recently issued Clean Power Plan (“CPP” or “Plan”) affects every state differently. The Plan has a decidedly nationwide impact—reducing the United States’ power plant greenhouse gas emissions 32 percent by the year...more

Manatt on Health Reform: Weekly Highlights - July 2015 #3

In quick succession, governors in Alaska and Utah announce Medicaid expansions this week; Iowa is transitioning its expansion away from the Marketplace to Medicaid managed care, for now; and, HHS extends its exception to...more

Developer Tips: Top 11 Misperceptions about Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act

Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act - Even experienced project proponents can get caught off guard by common misunderstandings about cultural resources protection laws. One of the most misunderstood...more

Ninth Circuit Holds that Indian Tribes are not “Persons” subject to FCA

In a brief unpublished memorandum opinion released on June 15, 2015, the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court’s dismissal of an FCA claim brought against a tribe, holding that tribes do not fit within the FCA’s...more

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House provides a high-level overview of recent activity at the Maine State House. Still No Budget as Statutory Adjournment Date Nears - As the legislative session ticks toward...more

Bills Propose to Reverse National Labor Relations Board Jurisdictions over Indian Tribal Governments

The National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) was enacted by Congress in 1935. The Act, also known as the Wagner Act after its champion, New York Senator Robert F. Wagner, passed the Senate in May 1935, the House in June 1935,...more

Senate Holds Hearing on ESA Reform Bills

On May 6, 2015, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing on several Endangered Species Act (ESA) reform bills, including at least three that are similar to bills introduced in 2014 in the House of...more

Tribes in Arizona May Have Opportunity to Participate in State’s Implementation Plan for the EPA Clean Power Plan

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed into law SB 1007, which authorizes the state to include tribes in any state plan to implement the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2)...more

CFPB and Navajo Nation Partner in UDAAP Action Against Companies Involved in Alleged Tax Refund Scheme

On April 14, the CFPB along with the Navajo Nation jointly announced an enforcement action against two companies and their respective owners (Defendants) for running an alleged tax-refund scheme, marking the CFPB’s “first...more

Gaming Legal News: Volume 8, Number 8

The Dance Known as “Texas Two Step” - The two-step is a partner dance, consisting of a “leader” (traditionally a man) and a “follower” (traditionally a woman). The leader determines the movements and patterns of the...more

IRS Issues Notice Addressing Impact of the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act of 2014 on Existing IRS Guidance

On April 16, 2015, the IRS released Notice 2015-34 clarifying the effect of the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act of 2014, Pub. L. No. 113-168, 128 Stat. 1883 (2014) (the “Act”), which added new Section 139E to the...more

DOE Announces Third Round Of START Program

On February 25, 2015, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced the third round of Strategic Technical Assistance Response Team (START) Renewable Energy Project Development Assistance that provides tribal governments and...more

Gaming Legal News - Volume 8 Number 1: Idaho Tribes And Community Leaders Seek To Limit "Instant Racing" Gaming Machines

A popular and profitable form of gaming has sparked a controversy in Idaho between the state’s Indian tribes and horse racetracks. "Instant Racing" video slot machines replay the last seconds of horse races run in the past,...more

OMB and Federal Agencies Publish Final Rule on Grants and Cooperative Agreements

On December 19, 2014, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and 28 federal agencies published in the Federal Register a consolidated interim final rule to implement OMB’s December 2013 final guidance on...more

U.S. Attorney General States Principles for Working With Tribes

On Friday, December 12, 2014, the Office of the Attorney General issued a notice setting forth principles for the AG and Department of Justice to work with federally recognized Indian tribes. Highlights of these principles...more

Does The DBO’s Draft Tribal Consultation Policy Violate the Public Records Act?

Three years ago, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. issued Executive Order B-10-11. Among other things, Governor Brown ordered: that it is the policy of this Administration that every state agency and department...more

Tribes Should Beware of Dissent in High Court Ruling, Lawyers Say

Native American tribes shouldn’t celebrate too heartily after a victory at the U.S. Supreme Court by the Bay Mills Indian Community, Oklahoma lawyers said. Tribal lawyers Michael McBride III with Crowe & Dunlevy and...more

Proposition 48: A North Fork in the Road for Tribal Casinos

Continuing our series on the 2014 California election ballot, we now turn to Proposition 48, the Referendum on Indian Gaming Compacts. If voters approve the referendum November 4th, Native American tribes may be able...more

Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act: New Law Supersedes IRS Guidance - H.R. 3043 Allows Tribes More Latitude in Social Programs

On Sept. 26, 2014, President Obama signed into law a measure that excludes from taxable income various general welfare payments to members of Indian tribes. One of the last pieces of legislation agreed upon by the...more

Second Circuit Issues Decision in Payday-Loan Regulatory Case

In a clash of competing sovereigns’ interests, the Second Circuit recently upheld, for now, the authority of the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) to regulate online payday loans made by Indian tribal lenders to...more

New Law Requires Formal Consultation with Native American Tribes During CEQA Process

Agencies Must, Upon Request, Consult With Tribes About “Tribal Cultural Resources” - Assembly Bill 52, signed yesterday by Gov. Jerry Brown, seeks to protect a new class of resources under CEQA: “tribal cultural...more

Negotiating with a Tribe or Tribal Entity: Practical Tips for Franchisors

Indian gaming has exploded in the more than twenty-five years since Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA). According to the 2014 Casino City’s Indian Gaming Industry Report, Indian tribes received $28.1...more

Supreme Court Affirms in Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community: Don’t Roll the Dice with Tribal Sovereign Immunity

The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community is a reminder to a broad range of entities, including energy companies, financial service providers, and state and local governments, that...more

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