LYZ JAAKOLA RECEIVES SALLY AWARD IN
By Luke Taylor, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. PAUL, Minn. – Lyz Jaakola, one of
Classical MPR’s 2013-2014 Class Notes Artists, won a Sally Award for
Education at the 22nd annual event at the Ordway Center for the
Performing Arts in St. Paul, Minn.
She received the award in honor of her
work in raising awareness and appreciation of Native music and
culture throughout Minnesota.
The Sally Awards are described on the
Ordway’s Web site as follows: “Since 1992, the Sally Awards have
honored individuals and institutions that strengthen and enrich our
entire state with their commitment to the arts and arts education.
The awardees’ talents and determination help make Minnesota’s quality
of life excellent and its culture unique and rich.”
The Sally Award is based on the "First
Trust Award" presented in 1986 to Sally Ordway Irvine, whose
initiative, vision and commitment inspired the creation of Ordway
Center for the Performing Arts.
Each winner receives a cash prize.
As one of Classical MPR’s Class Notes
Artists, Jaakola visited a number of schools throughout the state,
teaching children about Ojibwe/Anishinaabe music and culture through
STATE INCLUDES TRIBES FOR REMOTE VOTING
ST. PAUL, Minn. – Four additional
Minnesota counties have agreed to provide satellite election offices
on Indian reservations in Minnesota, according to Bret Healy,
consultant with Four Directions voting rights group.
Cass and Itaska counties will provide
absentee voting and late registration for Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe,
while White Earth Nation will be served by Becker and Mahnomin
Officials in Cass County are looking
forward to implementing their new office for Leech Lake Band of
Ojibwe, according to Auditor/Treasurer Sharon K. Anderson, who runs
elections for the county. “As I sought input from key people prior
to making this decision, I received nothing but positive feedback,”
Healy lauded the county election
officials for their enthusiasm and cooperation and the Minnesota
secretary of state for supporting the effort and helping with
technological assistance where necessary.
FOND DU LAC AND DULUTH CONTINUE SUIT
DULUTH, Minn. – The City of Duluth and
the Fond du Lac Band went back to court on July 28 to argue their
case over the Carter Hotel.
City Attorney Gunnar Johnson says
Duluth filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to stop the band
from putting the Carter Hotel into trust, because that would mean it
would no longer be on Duluth tax rolls.
The city told the court when the Fond
du Lac Band and the City came to a legal agreement in 1986 that
allowed the band to open the Fond Du Luth casino, a clause said no
new property would be put into trust without city consent. Johnson
says the city did not give consent for this move.
Fond du Lac Tribal Chair Karen Diver
has said the band wants to expand the Fond du Luth Casino into the
Carter Hotel which the tribe bought in 2010.
The Band filed motions to dismiss the
complaint and to dismiss the city’s non-abrogation claim, which was
the promise of the parties to not undermine their agreement using
political means. The city alleges the band broke its contract when it
asked the National Indian Gaming Commission to reverse its prior
approval of the casino contracts.
Duluth filed a federal lawsuit against
the Fond du Lac band for its efforts to expand Indian trust land in
FEMA ADDS TWO TRIBES TO DISASTER AID
ST. PAUL, Minn. – The federal
government added 24 Minnesota counties and two tribal governments to
the president’s disaster declaration on Aug. 1.
The Red Lake Band of Chippewa and
Prairie Island Indian Community are now eligible for federal
assistance to address recent flooding.
Altogether, 32 counties and two tribal
governments have been included in the declaration and approved for
federal assistance. In late July, a major disaster declaration was
announced for Chippewa, Freeborn, Jackson, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone,
Renville and Rock Counties.
Six flood-affected counties are still
under review by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, including
Dakota, Hennepin, Lyon, Ramsey, Watonwan and Wright counties.
Under a presidential disaster
declaration, FEMA will fund 75 percent of approved costs. The state
of Minnesota will fund the non-federal share. Eligible work can
include debris removal, emergency services related to the disaster
and repair or replacement of damaged public facilities such as roads,
bridges and recreation areas.
On Aug. 1, the U.S. Department of
Transportation also announced it will give $5 million to repair
Minnesota roads damaged by June’s widespread flooding.
BLANDIN FOUNDATION AWARDS BROADBAND
GRANTS TO LEECH LAKE
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Blandin
Foundation of Grand Rapids announced July 29 that it has awarded six
grants totaling $123,190 that assist rural Minnesota communities in
advancing high-speed Internet access and use in their communities,
including a grant to the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe.
LLBO will begin deployment of a
wireless network across the reservation to provide quality broadband
to tribal members, with support of a $50,000 Blandin Foundation
The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe and the
Blandin Foundation previously were successful with a Feasibility
Study that supports the broadband community project. The Blandin
Grant of $50,000 is the first leveraged funds that will kick start
the Leech Lake Band’s project to provide broadband services
(Internet in the home) first to the communities of Cass Lake and Bena
utilizing towers owned by the Band.
“Broadband will produce increased
access to health and education, spur growth in rural economies,
including ultimately alleviating the hardship of long distance fees
for what should be local dialing in tribal lands,” Sally Fineday,
Leech Lake Telecommunications Company business manager said. “This
innovative partnership with Blandin Foundation means success for the
Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe with its broadband network within its
As part of a five-year build-out plan,
the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe will utilize their five existing towers
plus three casino towers and build eight additional towers to provide
wireless broadband service throughout its tribal lands including
communities like Ball Club, Inger, S Lake, Cut Foot, West Winnie,
Prescott, Oak Point, Sugar Point, Federal Dam, Kego Lake, Mission,
Cass River and Onigum, where broadband services were not previously
available. The towers also will boost mobile service coverage along
major highways throughout the tribal lands.
“Rural leaders know that connected
communities are vibrant communities,” said Dr. Kathleen Annette,
CEO of Blandin Foundation. “We are delighted to see Leech Lake Band
of Ojibwe pull resources together to plan for access to and use of
high-speed Internet so critical to work and life today.”
Since making rural broadband use and
access a focus in 2003, Blandin Foundation has partnered with leaders
in more than 69 communities and 106 organizations across the state to
support sustainable broadband adoption to enhance quality of life and
TREASURE ISLAND ARREST YIELDS 1.5
OUNCES OF METH
WELCH, Minn. – A New Germany, Minn.,
woman was arrested on July 27 at Treasure Island Resort and Casino
with approximately 47 grams of methamphetamine in her purse,
according to a complaint filed in Goodhue County District Court July
Amy Mae Seefeldt, 27, is charged with
felony first-degree drug sale of 10 grams or more of methamphetamine
and felony first-degree possession of 25 grams or more of
methamphetamine, which both carry a maximum sentence of no less than
four years and no more than 40 years’ jail time and a $1 million
Prairie Island tribal police received
information that Seefeldt, who had a felony warrant out for her
arrest, was at Treasure Island Casino, according to the complaint.
Officers approached a woman, who
matched the Driver and Vehicle Services photo for Seefeldt, on the
floor of the casino and when asked if she was Amy Seefeldt she told
officers she was Amy’s sister, Ashley, and didn’t have any
identification card to verify her name, the complaint states.
Seefeldt was informed she was under
arrest and upon a search of her purse officers found three bags of a
crystal-like substance which later tested positive for
methamphetamine, authorities said, along with a black spoon with
Upon intake to the Goodhue County
Adult Detention Center, the intake officer found another bag in
Seefeldt’s purse which tested positive for meth and weighed just
less than one gram, the report states. The total weight of
methamphetamine found in Seefeldt’s purse weighed 47.05 grams,
according to the complaint. The complaint does not list the weights
of the first three bags of methamphetamine.
In 2012, Seefeldt was convicted of
felony fifth-degree drug possession – not small amount of marijuana
in Scott County.
Seefeldt was also charged with giving
a peace officer a false name, a gross misdemeanor which has a maximum
sentence of one year in prison and a $3,000 fine, and possession of
drug paraphernalia, a petty misdemeanor with up to a $300 fine.
RED LAKE AND COUNTY OFFICIALS TO RENEW
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
BEMIDJI, Minn. – Two chairmen were
seated at the Beltrami County Board of Commissioners meeting table on
Aug. 5 for a joint meeting between the two government entities.
Red Lake Tribal Chairman Darrell G.
Seki, Sr. joined Beltrami County Board Chairman Jim Lucachick and was
accompanied by Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians regional
representatives, Tribal Secretary Don Cook, Sr., Hereditary Chief
George King, the band’s administrator and members of New Beginnings.
Oshkiimaajitahdah (New Beginnings) is a skills development department
on the reservation located in Redby.
A project centered around
Oshkiimaajitahdah was the primary focus of the meeting. The
organization and Beltrami County’s Health and Human Services
Department are spearheading a program that will bring a health and
human services presence back to the reservation.
The project, called the Shared Service
and Access Pilot aims to support access to Minnesota Family
Investment Program services in the Red Lake Nation, which is
approximately 30 miles from the county seat of Bemidji. The pilot
will establish a video telepresence to connect people on the Red Lake
reservation with an eligibility intake staffer in an electronic
face-to-face interview. Information could then be faxed directly to
Beltrami County Health and Human Services electronic files.
Programs anticipated to improve under
the project include employment services referral, diversionary work
program eligibility, child care assistance program eligibility, food
support and expedited food support.
The outcome of the Shared Service and
Access Pilot project will be a transition of Red Lake Nation to a
direct relationship with the federal government and the Minnesota
State Department of Human Services. The Beltrami County Health and
Human Services department is assisting with training.
Jerry Loud, director of New
Beginnings, said a trial test for a video conference is scheduled for
Aug. 14. The Red Lake Internet Technology department has already been
testing the video system with the county. Beltrami County
commissioners and the Red Lake Tribal Council plan on holding a
second meeting in Red Lake to address additional concerns shared by
the reservation and county.