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DEADLINE PASSES FOR CITY TO APPEAL
DULUTH, Minn. – A 30 day deadline passed
for Duluth to file an appeal regarding the federal decision to allow
the Carter Hotel to be put into trust by the Fond du Lac Band.
The tribe bought the Carter Hotel in
2010, and later began the application to move the land into trust.
The city alleged the band broke its contract when it requested to put
the land into trust without first talking to the city.
However, a federal judge ruled on Dec.
22 that the band was legally allowed to that.
Duluth attorneys had said they might
appeal that decision, but the deadline to do that was Jan. 21.
FOND DU LAC TRIBAL COUNCIL VOTES TO
CONTINUE SMOKING AT CASINOS
CLOQUET, Minn. – The Fond du Lac tribal
council voted on Jan. 22 to ban smoking within their offices. More
details will be added to the band’s smoke-free policy, including no
smoking inside tribally-owned government offices and businesses
starting Feb. 15.
However, this smoking ban does not
include the Black Bear or Fond–du–Luth casinos. The Fond du Lac
tribe is located in Cloquet, but it owns and operate the Fond–du–Luth
Casino and the Carter Hotel building, in Duluth.
There has been a push for casinos
across the country to ban smoking, even in Wisconsin. According to a
survey conducted by the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council of
Wisconsin, a smoke-free policy at casinos would not reduce tribal
casino patronage, but actually increase it. The survey found that
over 75 percent of casino patrons are non–smokers.
As the Fond du Lac Band expresses its
interest in the health of the community, that may signal a shift by
looking at all non-smoking options, including casinos possibly in the
TAX LIENS FILED AGAINST LOWER BRULE
LOWER BRULE, S.D. – The chairman of
the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe may owe the Internal Revenue Service
hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid taxes, according to public
The IRS has filed tax liens on
Chairman Michael Jandreau and his property that total more than
$664,000 since 1994. That amount could include unpaid taxes as well
as interest and penalties.
Jandreau, who has presided over the
tribe for more than 30 years, is at the center of a report issued
last week by Human Rights Watch. The report, which followed a
two-year investigation by the international nonprofit, concluded that
$25 million in federal funds is missing. That money was supposed to
have paid for social services and other essential programs on the
The report blames the tribe's
leadership, including Jandreau and some former and current tribal
council members, for overseeing a government that hides basic
information from the public. That information includes financial
reports, salaries of public officials, resolutions of the tribal
council, minutes of council meetings, audits and more. In a
statement, the chairman denied the report's conclusions as
The tax liens raise questions about
the sources of Jandreau's income and its origins. Marshall Matz, a
lawyer representing the tribe, addressed the issue in a statement.
"There was a dispute over 'sovereignty' and its impact on tax
deductions," Matz said. "The dispute has been resolved and
the lien is being satisfied."
The liens were filed with the register
of deeds in Lyman County. The first lien was filed for taxes in 1994
and the final one for taxes in 2010. Between 1994 and 2010, the IRS
filed liens against Jandreau and his now deceased wife, totaling
The taxes in question relate to
Jandreau's Form 1040, which is the federal individual income tax
return. Although other taxes could be involved, the common taxes
arising out of a Form 1040 would be individual income tax and
self-employment tax, experts say.
The earliest liens, from 1994 to 1997,
might have been released because the last day to refile already has
passed. The other liens have refiling dates between this year and
2022. It isn't clear how Jandreau amassed the tax liabilities. Human
Rights Watch estimated that tribal council salaries were about
$81,000 per year, but as chairman, Jandreau probably makes more.