sota on-line masthead

Picture Picks of the Week

Don't miss out -- Click here
View the best pictures from this week's Sota
In full color!

  Obituaries Editorials Editor's column Education
Trading post

Volume 46 Issue No. 35

Anpetu Iyamni, Sept. 2, 2015

Inside this Edition –

Highlights of last week’s milestone “Dakotah Language Revitalization and Appreciation Day,” release of new Dakotah Language Dictionary

Tribal Elderly Board calls for a follow-up public Meth Forum Wednesday, Sept. 16th at the Community Center

SWO launches 1,000 Days Initiative Pregnancy Health Survey

GPTCHB receives CDC colorectal screening agreement

Revisiting ICWA reform: What’s it mean to the SWO Tribe?

SWO Fall Festival in the Park, Saturday, Sept. 12th; NAMMY-winning Bluedog Blues Band to perform to support SWO Mni Wiconi

Next week: SWO Youth Wacipi photo highlights, Heipa Pow Wow

Deadline for receipt of copy is Friday noon

Milestone in preserving Dakotah Language –

Dakotah Language Revitalization and Appreciation Day held last week

Much-needed new Dakotah dictionary released

Oyate gathered last Thursday at the SWO Tribal administration building to recognize achievements being made in preservation of the Dakotah Language. Seeing Tammy DeCoteau, and knowing how much of her heart and soul has gone into directing the language projects over the past 13 years … and others, the treasured elders especially … made it a deeply moving event.

SWO Tribal Chairman Bruce Renville and SD Governor Dennis Daugaard each approved proclamations declaring last Thursday, August 27, 2015 "Dakotah Language Revitalization and Appreciation Day."

In conjunction with the proclamation, the SWO Dakotah Language Institute released its recently completed English to Dakotah dictionary.

Copies were distributed last week and are available at the Dakota Language Institute: phone 605-698-8302 or by mail at SWO Dakotah Language Institute, PO Box 509, Agency Village, SD 57262.

SWO Tribal Chairman Renville read the proclamation and gave remarks about this important step in preservation of the Dakotah Language.

Former Tribal Chairman Robert Shepherd was presented with the first copy of the dictionary, in gratitude for his support for the project.

The dictionary was completely funded by the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, done from start to finish by enrolled SWO members. And it is published in-house by SWO Publishing.

Honoring was held for the treasured elders who have made the dictionary possible, the backbone of the entire movement to save the Dakotah Language.

This was a particularly moving ceremony, for many who began this project’s journey have made their own personal journey into the spirit world.

And, statistics shared show that about there were about 100 fluent Dakotah speakers among the Oyate only a decade ago. Today, that number stands at 60 or fewer. The need is critical, and pidamiya to all the elders and facilitators engaged in this effort to preserve the language.

Without the Dakotah Language and Culture, how can future generations understand what it means to be Dakota Oyate?

The elders present for the honoring are: Solomon “Harvey” Quinn; Gordon Redday; Orsen Bernard; Spencer Wanna; Marvin Hisgun; Danny Seaboy; David Seaboy; Clifford Canku; Delbert Pumpkinseed; Beatrice Biddell; Phyllis Roberts; Marcella Haug; Celine Buckanaga; Olivia Eastman; Edwina Bernard; Caroline Black Thunder; Della Eastman; and Lillian Owen, who along with her sister, Teresa Peters, participated in recordings at Sisseton Wahpeton College.

And those who have made their spirit journey, recognized for direct and indirect support are: V. June Renville; Clara Eagle; Melvina LaBatte; Edward R. Williams Jr.; Wayne “PeeWee” Eastman; Dayton Seaboy; and Florestine “Tina” White.

Student interns who helped with data entry over the summer months, recognized at the event, are: Demi DuMarce; Joshua Max; Michelle Wanna; Dionne Crawford Lake; Tristan Eastman; Kardsten Squirrel Coat; Wahca Ackerman.

Dakota Language Institute staff: Tammy DeCoteau, Program Director; Jodi Eastman, Graphic Designer; Eric DuMarce, Dictionary Project Manager.

Here are photo highlights of the honoring of treasured elders and community feed, which was held after the morning ceremony. Also, there were stands displaying arts and crafts, and providing information about Tribal programs.

Public Forum on Meth Wednesday, Sept. 16 at SWO Community Center

The SWO Tribal Elderly Board will host a community meth forum Wednesday, September 16, 2015 from 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. at the Community Center, Agency Village, SD.

This is a follow-up to a similar forum held at the Tribal Elderly Nutrition Center June 30th.

Consensus of many elders who turned out for the first forum was that strong action is needed to stop what they see as an “epidemic” of meth use and abuse and its consequences.

Those consequences include making life less safe for them in their own homes and communities.

The Elderly went before Tribal Council on August 4, 2015 with a request to banish meth dealers from the Tribe.

Council listened and passed the resolution, making banishment a consequence for drug dealers convicted of a felony.

Here is an excerpt from the resolution:

WHEREAS the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate is a treaty tribe and has according to the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Constitution, the authority to promulgate and enforce ordinances governing the conduct of Persons of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate and

WHEREAS, THE Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Council, pursuant to the amended Constitution of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Art. VII Sec 1 (a) is empowered to negotiate with Federal, State, and local governments and others on behalf of the Oyate, and

WHEREAS, the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate pursuant to the amended Constitution of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate, Art. VII Sec. 1 (h) is empowered to promote and protect the health, education and general welfare of the members of the Oyate, and

WHEREAS, the trafficking and use of methamphetamine on the Lake Traverse Reservation has skyrocketed, and

WHEREAS, the increased drug use has resulted in increased domestic abuse/violence, child abuse/neglect, assault and property crime, and

WHEREAS, without focused, purposeful action by the people of the Lake Traverse Reservation, the social costs of drug trafficking and use will spiral out of control,

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, any individual 18 years or older convicted in Tribal, State or Federal Court of dealing, distributing, manufacturing, or trafficking methamphetamine or any narcotic drug, including any substance containing opium, heroin, isonipecalne, amidone, isoamidone, ketoemidone, lysergic acid, diethylamide, coca leaves, any opiate or any compound or derivative of a controlled substance will be immediately excluded and banished according to the customary laws of Oceti Sakowin: and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Council hereby enacts the customary and uwritten laws, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Code will be amended with provisions that impose the penalty of banishment, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Chairman and Secretary of the Oyate are hereby authorized and instructed to sin this resolution for and behalf of the Sisseton Wapeton Oyate.


In passing the banishment resolution, the SWO Tribe joins sister tribes Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Sioux Tribes that have called for a similar solution for ending the meth epidemic on the reservations in South Dakota and North Dakota.

The measure, which may seem extreme, is being undertaken in step with Dakota tradition: according to the SWO resolution, banishment is being used “according to the customary laws of Oceti Sakowin.”

In announcing the September 16th forum, the Elderly Board specifically requests the presence of the following officials or representatives: Judge B.J. Jones, Karen Gangle, Judicial, SWO Legal, Capt. Gary Gaikowski/Tribal Law Enforcement, and Tribal Council.

All interested persons are encouraged to attend.

 “Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow”

By CD Floro

Sota Editor

Hats off! Or, perhaps, hats on would be a more appropriate phrase . . . for Myles Jones, new CEO for the Woodrow W. Keeble Memorial Health Care Center.

Myles issued a challenge to the IHS Employee Association to raise $2,000 in 33 days.

The funds will be used for Breast Cancer research.

And if successful, he would have Ms. Kayla Russell, representing the employees, shave his head bald.

Well, guess what!

The challenge has been met and Myles’ hair was scheduled to go off this Monday, August 31st.

Watch for pictures – before and after – in next week’s edition of the Sota.

And remember it’s all for a great cause, supporting the battle against Breast Cancer. It is a battle that affects all families.

Revisiting ICWA reform: What’s it mean to the SWO Tribe?

By CD Floro

Sota Editor

Just as the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) revision, the effective reform of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in South Dakota was applauded across Indian country. The ICWA reform came in a federal court ruling against the state of SD, which had been violating rights of Indian parents and tribes in how children were taken away.

Our Sota pages hailed the changes as great news for the Lake Traverse Reservation.

Below we re-publish our ICWA article from the April 8th, 2015 Sota.

What we would like to know, is how many children have the SWO Tribe saved from state placement into institutions or non-Indian foster/adoptive homes. How many.

There is gayapi that at least two have been turned away by the Tribe. We are hoping this is untrue.

But since the tribes have been given authority to prevent the disastrous disruption of lives – including the Mette scandal that supports grounds that Marty Jackley ought to be removed (and charged in court from crimes) – we want to see that the Tribe is faithfully exercising this right and responsibility.

The Tribe allocates resources for a wide variety of needs. Where is oversight into how those resources are helping the ones suffering the most -- children from dysfunction and addiction?

Can someone provide the statistics for us?

Federal Court rules for Indian families in ACLU lawsuit

Judge Viken: “Indian children, parents and tribes deserve better.”

Rapid City, SD – March 31, 2015 – In a sweeping victory for Indian families, a federal court has ordered South Dakota officials to stop violating the rights of Indian parents and tribes in state child custody proceedings on several grounds.

The ruling stems from a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union and Rapid City attorney Dana Hanna on behalf of two South Dakota Indian tribes – the Oglala Sioux Tribe and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe – and Indian parents who suffered the loss of their children at the hands of the state.

The lawsuit in part charges that Indian children are being removed from their homes in hearings that lasted as little as 60 seconds, and that parents have no chance to present evidence. In a 45-page ruling issued late yesterday, Chief Judge Jeffrey L. Viken wrote that "Indian children, parents and tribes deserve better," agreed with all seven of the ACLU's claims, and ordered the state to:

Provide parents with adequate notice prior to emergency removal hearings

Allow parents to testify at those hearings and present evidence

Appoint attorneys to assist parents in these removal proceedings

Allow parents to cross-examine the state’s witnesses in the hearings

Require state courts to base their decisions on evidence presented during these hearings.

The court also found that the state violated the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), a federal law designed to ensure the security and integrity of Indian tribes and families. The law is intended "to curb the alarmingly high rate of removal of Indian children from Indian parents."

"Indian children are being removed from their homes without giving parents and tribes any valid chance to respond. These reckless practices have led to enormous suffering by Indian children and their parents, and the unnecessary breakup of Indian families. This important ruling should help keep this from happening in the future," said Stephen Pevar, an attorney with the ACLU's Racial Justice Program. "We are very grateful that Judge Viken is putting an end to years of violations of basic rights."

The defendants are State Judge Jeff Davis, Pennington County Prosecutor Mark Vargo, State Director of the Department of Social Services (DSS) Lynne Valenti, and Pennington County DSS employee Luann Van Hunnik.

"All praise and honor should be given to those tribes and to the Lakota parents who have fought for the rights of all Indian people in this historic legal victory," said co-counsel Dana Hanna.

The lawsuit, Oglala Sioux Tribe v. Van Hunnik, was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of South Dakota in Rapid City.

The ruling is at:

The press statement is at:

More information is at:

(Editor’s note: With recent revelations about SD Attorney General Marty Jackley’s role in wrongful removal of Indian children from their homes, he should be removed from office and charged along with others for their brand of “human trafficking” … trafficking of Indian children!)

SWO Fall Festival will be held next Saturday, Sept. 12 at Memorial Park

There may be no Arts in the Park this year, but several programs have come together to co-host a SWO Fall Festival instead. Date is next Saturday, September 12, and the place is SWO Memorial Park at Sisseton (former Tekakwitha grounds).

The SWO Tribal Extension Program is bringing back its annual fair. Purpose is to recognize the many families that take pride in gardening, canning and otherwise preserving food in traditional ways.

With more and more awareness on the unhealthy food products the Oyate, and everyone really, is exposed to, growing your own food must be supported.

And it is here on the Lake Traverse Reservation.

One great model program is Kunsi’s Garden at Enemy Swim Day School.

And you can find individual families taking their land away from wasicu farmers who rent it to plant genetically modified (GMO) crops and overuse poisons to control weeds and pests. Practices that add to the destruction of the soil and pollute ground and water here on the Reservation and downstream.

And the gardeners.

And families practicing traditional animal husbandry.

Registration of produce will begin at 9:00 a.m.

The SWO Youth Department and Aliive Roberts County, following a summer of extraordinary opportunities for young people on the Lake Traverse Reservation, have lined up a great set of activities. Many are geared for the kids, others for families.

Here are highlights:

*Horseshoe tournament.

*3 on 3.




*BBQ/Chili Cook-off.

*Painting in the Park.

*Color Run.

*Horse Parade.

*Knocker Ball.

The sponsoring organizations have given permission for Mni Wiconi to bring the Oyate’s own NAMMY-winning Bluedog Blues Band to perform. Bluedog will help raise awareness for environmental issues, including having the Tribe assert its water rights. Mni Wiconi is a voice of the Oyate calling for a halt to wholesale draining of the Tribe’s aquifers and pollution of the ground and water.

There will be an informational booth on the grounds near the stage. Posters will be sold for a donation of $1 or more each. Proceeds will go toward helping pay for water testing in a certified lab.

Bluedog Blues Band will perform at 12:00 noon and again at 2:00 p.m. Prairie Winds will perform at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m.

There may also be some jamming with all the musicians of both Oyate bands!

Anyone interested in being a vendor, contact Rainee at 605-698-8353 or Cost is $10.

Information about any of the other activities, contact: Derrick McCauley at 605-698-3911 or or Dustina Gill at For information about Mni Wiconi contact Chuck Floro at 605-938-4452 or

Education Dept. awards grants to support tribally controlled colleges, universities

Sisseton Wahpeton College to receive $500,000

Washington, DC – August 28, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Education today announced the award of more than $50.4 million in new grants to support American Indian Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities in a dozen states. Under the Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities Program, the formula-based grants will help eligible higher education institutions increase their self-sufficiency by providing funds to strengthen their academic quality, management and overall fiscal stability.

“Tribal institutions serve a valuable role for American Indian students,” said William Mendoza, executive director, White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education. “As accredited institutions, tribal colleges are unique. In addition to functioning in a similar fashion to community colleges or small, public four-year schools, they support the preservation and revitalization of Native languages and serve other cultural needs of their students. They deliver instruction in culturally appropriate ways, thereby promoting tribal culture and academic achievement.”

To qualify for funding, institutions must meet the federal definition of the term “tribally controlled college or university.” That is, they must be formally controlled, or have been formally sanctioned or chartered by the governing body of an Indian tribe or tribes. No more than one institution shall be recognized with respect to any individual tribe.

The Obama Administration is committed to expanding educational opportunities and improving educational outcomes for American Indian and Alaskan Native children. As demonstrated by President Obama’s Executive Order on Improving American Indian and Alaska Native Educational Opportunities and Strengthening Tribal Colleges and Universities, the Administration continues to work to improve the programs available at tribal colleges so that Native students are well prepared to compete for the high-skilled, quality jobs of today and tomorrow. Last year, the President announced the launch of Generation Indigenous (Gen I), a Native youth initiative focused on removing the barriers that stand between Native youth and their opportunities to succeed.

South Dakota

SD Kyle Oglala Lakota College $1,510,470

SD Mission Sinte Gleska University $969,950

SD Sisseton Sisseton Wahpeton College $500,000

North Dakota

ND Fort Totten Cankdeska Cikana Community College $500,000

ND New Town Fort Berthold Community College $500,000

ND Fort Yates Sitting Bull College $598,822

ND Belcourt Turtle Mountain Community College $936,542

ND Bismarck United Tribes Technical College $795,110

Funding to build capacity of tribal education departments, promote tribal control of BIE schools

Washington, DC – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn has announced that $1.75 million in funding is being made available to tribes through two Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) initiatives: The Sovereignty in Indian Education (SIE) Enhancement Program and the Tribal Education Department (TED) Grant Program. These programs assist federally recognized tribes with building their tribal education departments and promoting tribal control of their schools.

“Tribes have the best perspective on what their children need to learn and how the schools that serve their communities can become successful,” Washburn said. “I want to thank Congress for providing the funding that ensures tribes will be able to assume total control over BIE-funded schools and guide their children’s cultural and academic learning.”

The SIE enhancement and TED grant programs were established based on a recommendation contained in the Blueprint for Reform – a report that was created with help from tribal governments and key federal and tribal officials – and are in the second round of funding. The program funds fulfill a recommendation in the Blueprint for Reform for BIE to support tribal nations in their efforts to: restructure schools’ governance, assume control over BIE-funded schools, and develop curriculum that is both academically rigorous and culturally relevant to their students.

“When the Blueprint for Reform was released in 2014, the BIE set out a vision for tribal nations and BIE-funded schools that is grounded in high academic standards and tribal culture, language and history. The TED and SIE funding will support and prepare tribes to operate successful schools and shape what their students are learning. Today, this funding announcement moves us one step closer to our goal of allowing tribes to truly structure how they envision what education should look like,” said BIE Director Dr. Charles M. “Monty” Roessel.

The purpose of SIE enhancement funds is to support the tribes’ capacity to manage and operate tribally controlled schools as defined by the Tribally Controlled Schools Act of 1988. These funds support the development of a school-reform plan to improve educational outcomes for students and improve efficiencies in the operation of BIE-funded schools within a reservation. Tribes must have at least one BIE-funded school to be eligible.

SIE enhancement funding range from $100,000 to $200,000 per fiscal year depending on the number of schools involved, student enrollment, the complexity of creating a new tribally managed school system, and the tribe’s technical approach. In year 1 of the program, SIE will support tribes in the research and design of their tribally managed school systems. Year 2 funds, the implementation year, are awarded based on tribe’s approved support of the tribally managed school system plan. These enhancements will provide funds for tribes to:

· Research and define its adequate yearly progress (AYP);

· Develop an implementation plan that will reform a tribe’s current organizational structure towards an expert and independent TED that supports schools and students; and

· Cover the execution of the implementation plan with identified staffing, projected timelines, proposed budgets and activities.

The TED grant program provides funds for tribes and their TEDs for projects defined by the Education Amendments Act of 1978. These funds support the development and operation of TEDs to advance educational outcomes for students and improve the efficiency and effectiveness in the management of BIE-funded schools.

· TED grants will range from $25,000 to $150,000 per fiscal year, for three years or depending on the project, number of educational programs impacted, project design, and expected outcomes. Subject to the availability of appropriated funds, grants will be provided for three years and, depending on performance, may be renewed for additional two-year terms. Grant funds will support program goals for the following areas that promote tribal education capacity-building;

· To provide for the development and enforcement of tribal educational codes, including tribal educational policies and tribal standards applicable to curriculum, personnel, students, facilities and support programs;

· To facilitate tribal control in all matters relating to the education of Indian children on reservations and on former reservations in Oklahoma; and

· To provide for the development of coordinated educational programs on reservations and on former reservations in Oklahoma by encouraging tribal administrative support of all BIE-funded educational programs, as well as encouraging tribal cooperation and coordination with entities carrying out all educational programs receiving financial support from other federal agencies, state agencies or private entities.

Eligible tribal governments may apply for SIE and TED funding by responding to the relevant Request for Proposals (RFPs) notices published in the Federal Register. To view them, visit:

Both SIE and TED grant proposals must be submitted no later than 4:00 p.m. EDT on Monday, September 21, 2015.

In addition to today’s funding announcement, the BIE will hold pre-grant training workshops for SIE and TED applicants. Further information on these programs and pre-grant training workshops can be found on the SIE (

TED ( websites.


The Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs oversees the BIE, which operates the federal school system for American Indian and Alaska Native children from the federally recognized tribes. The BIE director is directly responsible for implementing federal education programs and laws in 183 elementary and secondary day and boarding schools on 64 reservations in 23 states serving over 48,000 students. Of these, 59 are BIE-operated and 124 are tribally operated under Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act contracts or Tribally Controlled Schools Act grants. The BIE also funds or operates off-reservation boarding schools and peripheral dormitories near reservations for tribal students attending public schools.

More than $300,000 for Sex Offender registration, monitoring in ND

Bismarck, ND – August 28, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced $333,000 in federal funding to assist the North Dakota Attorney General’s office in registering sex offenders and keeping North Dakotans safe.

“Our state will be able to use these funds to more quickly register and monitor those who pose a threat to our safety – and that’s good news for North Dakota,” said Heitkamp. “As North Dakota’s Attorney General and now as a U.S. Senator, I’ve fought to keep North Dakota strong and safe, especially as our state grows and changes. I’ll keep fighting to make sure North Dakota remains a great place to live, work, and raise a family.”

The U.S. Department of Justice awarded the grant to the North Dakota Attorney General’s office for sentencing, monitoring, apprehending, registering, and tracking sex offenders. The federal funds will be used to guarantee timely registration of sex offenders by the use of electronic submission, reducing local law enforcement staff time spent on registration. The grant will also improve the verification process, the timeliness of additional sex offender information sent in by mail, and the capabilities of record retrieval for all sex offender registration information.

Heitkamp today also announced $19,000 in funds through the Justice Department for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe to prevent and control crime.

Heitkamp has made public safety and human trafficking top priorities in her Strong & Safe Communities Initiative, and focused on crime reduction and public safety during her time as North Dakota’s Attorney General as well.

To witness North Dakota’s crime challenges firsthand, Heitkamp rode along with the U.S. Marshal on the Fort Berthold Reservation in April, as law enforcement checked in on sex offenders. Heitkamp has also met with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and others to discuss human trafficking, and successfully pushed a bipartisan bill fighting human trafficking through the Senate in April.

Throughout the year, as part of her Strong & Safe Communities Initiative, Heitkamp has been meeting with North Dakotans to hear their feedback about new challenges from the state’s rapid growth, including the increases in digital challenges, movement of crude oil on the rails, human trafficking, drug-related crimes, as well as other issues. Through her discussions across the state, as well as with her Strong & Safe Communities Task Force, Heitkamp is working to make sure the safety of North Dakota families and communities is a top priority.

Approval of Rural Water Project needed step in improving access to clean drinking water in ND

Bismarck, ND – August 21, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today released the following statement on the decision of the Bureau of Reclamation approving of a treatment method for the Northwest Area Water Supply (NAWS) Project to improve access to clean drinking water in rural areas across northwestern North Dakota.

A vocal advocate for improved access to water supplies in rural areas, Heitkamp has long been pressing for the completion of the studies on the NAWS project. Construction on the project – which is part of the federal government’s longstanding commitment to provide greater access to Lake Sakakawea as a water source – began in 2002 to increase the availability of reliable clean drinking water in northwest North Dakota, including Ward County and the Minot region. The project has been delayed due to legal challenges from the state of Missouri and the Province of Manitoba.

Just two months ago, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed Heitkamp’s bipartisan legislation to make sure small towns and rural areas have the technical assistance and training they need to help protect and improve their water supplies.

“After several years and study after study, rural communities across the northwestern part of our state are a step closer to getting improved access to clean drinking water that they deserve,” said Heitkamp. “Providing each town across North Dakota with reliable sources of clean drinking water is a core part of keeping our statewide community connected – that’s why I’ve been calling for years for the strongest plan to do that across the state. After years of delay, today’s federal approval, which I’ve been pressing for, will make sure we can continue moving forward with this project.”

Heitkamp has long worked to foster relationships encouraging increased resources and assistance for rural areas. In November, Heitkamp met with Rural Utilities Service (RUS) Acting Administrator Jasper Schneider to discuss the need for targeted investments, like water infrastructure, in rural communities across the nation. On the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, Heitkamp serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Subcommittee on Rural Development and Energy – which oversees RUS.

The 2014 Farm Bill, which Heitkamp played a leading role in crafting, places a strong emphasis on supporting rural development projects. The bill authorizes programs that help upgrade and improve rural water systems, invest in expanding rural high-speed Internet, provide loans to consumers to improve energy efficiency through the new Rural Energy Savings Program, and reauthorize several other existing programs that are critical to supporting economic and community development in rural America.

DOJ program to enhance tribal access to national crime info databases

Tribal Access Program (TAP) will improve flow of critical data

Washington, DC – August 19, 2015 – The Department of Justice is launching an initial phase of the Tribal Access Program for National Crime Information (TAP) to provide federally-recognized tribes access to national crime information databases for both civil and criminal purposes. TAP will allow tribes to more effectively serve and protect their communities by ensuring the exchange of critical data.

This initial phase of TAP was announced today in a meeting with tribes held during the 2015 Department of Justice/FBI Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division Tribal Conference in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

“Federal criminal databases hold critical information that can solve crimes, and keep police officers and communities safe,” said Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates. “The Tribal Access Program is a step forward to providing tribes the access they need to protect their communities, keep guns from falling into the wrong hands, assist victims and prevent domestic and sexual violence. Empowering tribal law enforcement with information strengthens public safety and is a key element in our ongoing strategy to build safe and healthy communities in Indian country. ”

“The FBI is pleased to participate in this initiative,” said Executive Assistant Director Amy Hess of the FBI’s Science and Technology Branch. “This will be a positive step for the tribal agencies to receive valuable criminal information and also for those same tribal agencies to submit criminal information at the national level. Through this partnership, information becomes richer and communities can become safer.”

TAP will support tribes in analyzing their needs for national crime information and help provide appropriate solutions, including a-state-of-the-art biometric/biographic computer workstation with capabilities to process finger and palm prints, take mugshots and submit records to national databases, as well as the ability to access CJIS systems for criminal and civil purposes through the Department of Justice. TAP will also provide specialized training and assistance for participating tribes.

While in the Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 Congress required the Attorney General to ensure that tribal officials that meet applicable requirements be permitted access to national crime information databases, the ability of tribes to fully participate in national criminal justice information sharing via state networks has been dependent upon various regulations, statutes and policies of the states in which a tribe’s land is located. Therefore, improving access for tribal law enforcement to federal criminal information databases has been a departmental focus for several years. In 2010, the department instituted two pilot projects, one biometric and one biographic, to improve informational access for tribes. The biographic pilot continues to serve more than 20 tribal law enforcement agencies.

Departments of Justice and Interior Working Group

In 2014, the Departments of Justice and the Interior (DOI) formed a working group to assess the impact of the pilots and identify long-term sustainable solutions that address both criminal and civil needs of tribes. The outcome of this collaboration was the TAP, as well as an additional program announced today by the DOI’s Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) that provides tribes with national crime information prior to making child placement decisions in emergency circumstances. Under the BIA program, social service agencies of federally recognized tribes will be able to view criminal history information accessed through BIA’s Office of Justice Services who will conduct name-based checks in situations where parents are unable to care for their children.

“Giving tribal government programs access to national crime databases through DOJ’s Tribal Access Program for National Crime Information is a tremendous step forward towards increasing public safety in Indian Country,” said Assistant Secretary Kevin K. Washburn for Indian Affairs at the Department of the Interior. “The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services’ Purpose Code X program provides a much-needed tool for tribal social service agencies when they must find safe homes to place children during temporary emergency situations.”

In the initial phase of the TAP program, the biometric/biographic workstations will be deployed to up to 10 federally-recognized tribes who will provide user feedback. This phase will focus on assisting tribes that have law enforcement agencies, while in the future the department will seek to address needs of the remaining tribes and find a long-term solution. The department will continue to work with Congress for additional funding to more broadly deploy the program.

The Department of Justice’s Chief Information Officer manages TAP.

“It is our hope that TAP can minimize the national crime information gap and drive a deeper and more meaningful collaboration between the federal, state, local and tribal criminal justice communities,” said Chief Information Officer Joseph F. Klimavicz for the department.

For more information on TAP, visit ><.

For more information about the Justice Department’s work on tribal justice and public safety issues, visit: ><.

For more information about the Department of the Interior Bureau of Indian Affairs, visit ><

New program to assist Tribal Social Services Agencies in placing Children in Safe Homes

Washington, DC – August 19, 2015 Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced a new Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Office of Justice Services (BIA-OJS) program to assist federally recognized tribal social services agencies seeking to place children in safe homes.

“The BIA-OJS Purpose Code X Program will provide tribal social service agencies with the information they need to protect the children they place into care in emergency situations when parents are unable to provide for their welfare,” Washburn said. “This program provides BIA law enforcement personnel with the ability to provide our social service agency partners with much-needed information to help to make sure children requiring emergency placements will be placed in safe homes.”

The BIA-OJS Purpose Code X Program arose out of a 2014 working group formed by the Departments of Justice (DOJ) and the Interior (DOI) to identify sustainable solutions that provide tribes access to national crime information that addresses criminal and civil needs of tribes. The outcome of this collaboration was the BIA-OJS Purpose Code X Program and DOJ Tribal Access Program for National Crime Information (TAP) TAP will allow tribes to more effectively serve and protect their communities by ensuring the exchange of critical data.

Under the BIA-OJS Purpose Code X Program, BIA-OJS dispatch centers will be available to provide 24-hour access to criminal history records, so name-based checks can be done immediately. Protocols for operating under the new program are being developed by BIA-OJS and will be tested by a select number of tribes prior to a nationwide implementation of the program.

BIA-OJS obtained authorization to perform these name-based checks from the National Crime Prevention and Privacy Compact Council, an organization which has the legal authority to promulgate rules and procedures governing the exchange of criminal records for non-criminal justice purposes.

“The BIA Office of Justice Services and DOJ’s Office of Tribal Justice have made collaboration on improving tribal access to information a high priority over the last year, and I am grateful to the Compact Council for approving our request so quickly,” said BIA OJS Deputy Director Darren A. Cruzan.

OJS has also worked to improve tribal reporting to the Uniform Crime Report system and encouraged tribal participation in the National Data Exchange (NDEx) system.

All of these efforts underscore the importance of the exchange of information between law enforcement agencies to achieving public safety in all jurisdictions, including Indian Country.

The BIA-OJS’s mission is to address public safety concerns in Indian Country by funding law enforcement, correctional departments and tribal court services to the nation’s federally recognized tribes. It also coordinates emergency preparedness support on federal Indian lands by working cooperatively with other federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies throughout Indian Country. The BIA-OJS operates the Indian Police Academy in Artesia, N.M., which provides training and professional development to BIA and tribal law enforcement personnel.

Visit for more information about OJS and its work.

For more information on TAP, visit

Venture Communications annual meeting

Highmore, S.D. – Venture Communications Cooperative, a Highmore based communications company, will hold its 58th annual meeting of the membership on Wednesday, September 16, 2015 at 6:45 PM at the Hyde County Memorial Auditorium in Highmore, SD.

A complimentary meal will be served beginning at 5:30 PM. The meeting will follow at 6:45 PM.

Items on the agenda for the business meeting include comments from the board president and the general manager of the cooperative.

Door prizes will be handed out during registration and prize drawings including the grand prize drawing for an iPad and 6 months of internet service including WiFi will be held after the business meeting.

Venture Communications Cooperative members are encouraged to attend. Venture Communications provides telecommunications services, digital video TV services, Internet services and wireless cellular service in Central and Northeast South Dakota.

Infrastructure investments: Building blocks for a healthy economy

By Rep. Kristi Noem

August 28, 2015

There’s hardly anything our family consumes that isn’t somehow impacted by rail. From the food we eat to products we use in our homes, the reliability of our nation’s railways is critical. In South Dakota, that importance is even more prominent. Nearly every commodity we produce is exported and shipped via rail. Disruptions or delays have an immediate and costly impact, as we saw early last year. If our infrastructure crumbles, so does our economy.

Earlier this month, I met with the Rapid City, Pierre, and Eastern Railroad (RCP&E), which covers 670 miles of track stretching from Minnesota to Wyoming and running straight through the middle of South Dakota. Railroads like RCP&E along with the state government are making meaningful investments to help avoid the backlogs that occurred last year. I’m optimistic it’s been enough to ensure our rails can run smoothly and on time this year, but as is true for our nation’s roads and bridges, continued investments are necessary.

With nearly every farmer, rancher, and consumer relying on a well-maintained rail infrastructure, investments here should be a national priority. It’s one of the reasons why I’ve been supportive of offering tax incentives to those willing to devote financial resources to improving our railroads.

One such incentive is the Short Line Tax Credit, which helps smaller railroads. If you are investing in our railroads, you are creating jobs; you are increasing the speed of commerce; you are making products more affordable for hardworking families across the country. The federal government has a responsibility to make those investments easier and offering tax credits like this helps accomplish that.

I am proud to have co-sponsored legislation in the House to extend this credit through 2016 and because it has broad bipartisan support, I’m hopeful we can see it enacted soon.

I’ve also encouraged the U.S. Department of Transportation to use existing grants to make greater investments in South Dakota, as so many of our nation’s commodities are shipped out of our state. Moving wheat, soybeans, and corn more efficiently in South Dakota will reap countless benefits for consumers throughout the entire country. It’s worth the investment.

For more than a century, rail has connected our coasts and enabled American commerce to thrive. Still today, it remains one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways to ship our goods, moving 40 percent of our nation’s intercity freight traffic and bringing one-third of U.S. exports to port.

Together with investments in roads and bridges, investments in our railroads help enable commerce to happen. They are the building blocks of a healthy economy and a requirement for sustainable economic growth.

Funding to combat Drug Trafficking, support Victims Assistance programs

Bismarck, ND – August 27, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced nearly $450,000 in federal funding to combat the growing threat of crime and drug trafficking in North Dakota and support services for victims of violent crimes through the North Dakota Office of the Attorney General.

 Specifically, these federal funds will be used to support narcotics enforcement task forces that are working to combat the large increase in narcotics and prescription drug use, trafficking, distribution and clandestine manufacturing. These funds will also support victims services including court assistance, support, shelter, protection order preparation, relocating, children’s medical and forensic examinations, and advocacy.

 “As North Dakota’s former Attorney General, I understand the unique law enforcement challenges facing our state, and the need to make sure North Dakota’s families and communities are safe,” said Heitkamp. ”North Dakota’s rapidly growing population has put a strain on law enforcement across our state and resulted in an increase of drug-related crimes. Through my Strong & Safe Communities Initiative and by bringing the current and former Drug Czars to North Dakota over the past few years, I’ve been working to make sure we address these challenges head on, and these federal funds continue those efforts. With these federal funds, local law enforcement will have increased resources to investigate substance trafficking, as well as provide critical support for victims and their families through court assistance and drug treatment programs.”

 Since serving as North Dakota’s Attorney General, Heitkamp has played a leading role in supporting and protecting North Dakota communities. Last August, Heitkamp joined the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s (ONDCP) Director Michael Botticelli in Minot to announce a new national strategy to combat drug crime and trafficking across the country, with a particular focus on addressing growing drug problems in North Dakota and reducing the cross-border flow of drugs between the U.S. and Canada. This announcement was made after Heitkamp brought former ONDCP Director R. Gil Kerlikowske to North Dakota in July 2013 to meet with local law enforcement and tribal officials about the major increase in drug crimes in the oil patch which is spreading to other areas. Just four months after that visit, ONDCP announced a series of steps to help reduce drug crime and abuse in the Bakken, including naming Williams County as a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, making it eligible for more federal funds.

 In January 2013, Heitkamp welcomed news that a special prosecutor will be placed in western North Dakota to help fight drug-related crimes in the state’s oil patch. And in June 2013, Heitkamp brought Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) – then-Chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs – to North Dakota to meet with Border Patrol agents, local sheriffs, tribal law enforcement and other officials and hear firsthand about the security and law enforcement challenges facing North Dakota as the state’s population has boomed. To help address the unique law enforcement challenges in Indian Country, Heitkamp also brought together leaders from the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa in March 2013, focusing specifically on drug abuse and trafficking on the reservation.

 Additionally, Heitkamp has been working to address North Dakota’s growing substance abuse challenges through her Strong & Safe Communities Initiative. Heitkamp’s Strong & Safe Communities Initiative focuses on emerging challenges facing the state by bringing a greater focus to keeping North Dakota communities strong and families safe in their homes.

Entries invited for UTTC Parade of Champions

Bismarck, ND – UTN – United Tribes invites all groups and organizations to enter the “Parade of Champions,” set for Saturday, September 12 in Bismarck. “Parade of Champions” is part of the annual United Tribes Technical College Powwow and features a moving display of American Indian culture. Any group or organization is welcome to participate in the parade. Cash awards are offered for winning entries.

The 2015 parade theme is: “Strengthening Communities.” Staging begins at 7:45 a.m. in the east parking lot of the State Capitol grounds, the Highway Dept. lot. The parade begins at 9:30 a.m.

Earlier this year, a new route was adopted for parades in Bismarck: Stage and start at the State Capitol and proceed down 6th Street to Avenue A; west on Avenue A to 4th Street; north on 4th Street to the west side of the Capitol; and east onto the Capitol grounds to return to the Highway Dept. parking lot.

More info or to register Dale Pletan, 701-221-1422. The 46th Annual United Tribes Technical College Powwow begins September 10 on the college campus in south Bismarck.

People from any and all backgrounds are welcome to attend and share the traditions of one of North Dakota’s premier cultural events.

Approval of tribal land leasing regs under HEARTH Act

Action brings to 22 number of federally recognized tribal governments with authority to approve, manage leases on their trust lands without BIA approval

Washington, DC – August 25, 2015 – In keeping with President Obama’s commitment to empowering tribal nations and strengthening their economies, Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that he has approved land leasing regulations from the Makah Indian Tribe and the Squaxin Island Tribe in Washington State pursuant to the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (or HEARTH) Act.

“As more tribes see the possibilities of using their lands that the HEARTH Act has made available to them, the Department will be able to further support their goals of meeting their communities’ needs and achieving economic self-sufficiency,” Washburn said. “I congratulate the leadership of the Makah Indian Tribe and the Squaxin Island Tribe on this success as they continue working for the greater economic good of all their peoples.”

The Assistant Secretary’s action authorizes the two tribes to enter into land leases without having to obtain approval by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA): Neah Bay-based Makah Indian Tribe for residential, business, wind and solar development, and other authorized purposes, and the Squaxin Island Tribe, headquartered in Shelton, Wash., for business.

“The Makah Tribal Council is looking forward to implementing the HEARTH Act. We will now be able to efficiently streamline the approval of leases that are of the utmost importance to our tribal development priorities,” said Makah Indian Tribe Chairman Timothy J. Greene Sr. “This exercise of sovereignty will encourage investment and economic development throughout our community.”

“It’s great to see leasing approval back with the Tribe,” said Squaxin Island Tribe Chairman David Lopeman. “I’m hopeful this new tool will help the Squaxin Island Tribe benefit the region with new jobs and opportunities.”

The HEARTH Act restores the authority of federally recognized tribes to develop and implement their own laws governing the long-term leasing of Indian lands for residential, business, renewable energy, and other purposes. Upon one-time approval of their regulations by the Department of the Interior, tribes then have the authority to process land leases without BIA approval, thereby greatly expediting leasing approval for homes and small businesses in Indian Country.

In addition, the principles supporting the federal preemption of state law in the field of Indian leasing and the taxation of lease-related interests and activities applies with equal force to leases entered into under tribal leasing regulations approved by the federal government pursuant to the HEARTH Act.

In accordance with Section 5 of the Indian Reorganization Act (25 U.S.C. 465) and the Department’s regulations governing the surface leasing of trust and restricted Indian land, permanent improvements, leasehold or possessory interests, and activities on land leased under DOI-approved HEARTH Act tribal leasing regulations are subject to tribal, not state and local, taxation.

As the HEARTH Act was intended to afford tribes the flexibility to adapt lease terms to suit their business and cultural needs and to enable them to approve leases quickly and efficiently, assessment of state and local taxes would obstruct these express federal policies of supporting tribal economic development and self-determination as well as threaten tribal interests in effective tribal government, economic self-sufficiency and territorial autonomy.

With their new authority, the two tribes, whose reservations include fractionated lands, may now consider what uses they may wish to pursue with regards to fractional interests in trust land that were repurchased and restored to them by the Department under the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations. The Buy-Back Program, which was established by the historic Cobell Settlement, represents a federal policy initiative to restore tribal homelands in support of tribal sovereignty and self-government to the maximum extent possible on tribal trust lands. The fractional interests received by the Makah Indian Tribe and the Squaxin Island Tribe are equivalent to approximately 64 acres and 155 acres, respectively.

The Assistant Secretary’s action brings to 22 the number of federally recognized tribes whose land leasing regulations have been approved by the Department under the HEARTH Act. The tribes with approved leasing regulations are:

· Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, Calif. (Business)

· Pueblo of Sandia, N.M. (Business)

· Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, Mich. (Residential)

· Ak-Chin Indian Community, Ariz. (Business)

· Santa Rosa Band of Cahuilla Indians, Calif. (Business)

· Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Okla. (Business)

· Ewiiaapaayp Band of Kumeyaay Indians, Calif. (Business)

· Kaw Nation, Okla. (Business)

· Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe, Washington State (Business)

· Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians, Calif. (Business)

· Wichita and Affiliated Tribes, Okla. (Business)

· Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut (Business)

· Navajo Nation General Leasing Regulations, Ariz., N.M. and Utah

· Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Calif. (Business)

· Seminole Tribe of Florida (Individual Business and Residential Ordinances)

· Cowlitz Indian Tribe, Washington State (Business)

· Oneida Indian Nation, N.Y. (Business)

· Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin (Business, Residential and Agricultural Codes)

· Absentee-Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma (Business)

· Rincon Band of Luiseno Mission Indians, Calif. (Business)

· Makah Indian Tribe, Wash. (Residential, Business, Renewable Energy)

· Squaxin Island Tribe, Wash. (Business)

Both the Absentee-Shawnee Tribe’s and the Rincon Band of Luiseno Mission Indians’ regulations were approved in June 2015.

Congress passed the HEARTH Act with overwhelming bipartisan support, and it was signed by President Obama on July 30, 2012.


The Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs oversees the BIA, which is headed by a director who is responsible for managing day-to-day operations through four offices – Indian Services, Justice Services, Trust Services, and Field Operations. These offices directly administer or fund tribally based infrastructure, law enforcement, social services, tribal governance, natural and energy resources, and trust land and resources management programs for the nation’s federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribes through 12 regional offices and 81 agencies.

President Obama speaks out about clean energy

Las Vegas, Nevada – August 25, 2015 – Remarks by the President at the National Clean Energy Summit at Mandalay Bay Resort Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much.   Thank you, everybody. Please, please, have a seat. We're all about saving energy here.  Sit down.

Hello, Las Vegas!   It’s good to be back on the road after spending a little downtime with my family -- recharging my own batteries, so to speak. And it is great to join you at this clean energy summit to see the work that you’re all doing on what I consider to be one of the most important issues not just of our time, but of any time.

I want to thank Mandalay Bay and MGM’s chairman, Jim Murren, for hosting us today. I want to thank my dear friend, your outstanding Senator, Harry Reid, for holding this summit -- and for keeping us focused on this challenge. I want to thank him, by the way, for his strong statement over the weekend in support of a deal that is going to make sure that Iran does not get a nuclear weapon, which is a top priority of my administration.   And Harry’s leadership matters. It sends a message that Congress should support this historic diplomatic breakthrough, and not block it over the objections of most of the world. It reflects the best of American foreign policy. We don't rely on bluster or bravado; we focus on strong, principled diplomacy that prevents Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon -- and showing once again to the entire world what American leadership really means.

Now, we’re here today because we believe that no challenge poses a greater threat to our future than climate change. It’s something that I’d spoken at length about a few weeks ago; it’s something that I’ll speak about at length next week when I travel throughout Alaska.

But we’re also here because we hold another belief, and that is we are deeply optimistic about American ingenuity. We think we can do good and do well at the same time. We believe we have the power, the dynamism, the creativity to solve a big problem while keeping the engines of the American economy moving.

Six and a half years ago, I took office after decades in which our addiction to fossil fuels and foreign oil perennially threatened our planet and our national security. And together, we’ve begun to change that -- a lot of people in this room working with us. Yes, we’ve become the world’s number-one producer of oil and natural gas, but we've also become a major player in clean energy. And these advances have helped to grow our economy and created a steady stream of well-paying jobs. They’ve also helped us reduce the dangerous emissions that contribute to climate change. And we’ve done it in three big ways.

First of all, we’re wasting less energy. We’ve set new fuel economy standards on cars and trucks, new efficiency standards on appliances like refrigerators and dishwashers -- and these advances are already saving folks money at the pump; it's saving money on their electricity bills. And steps like these also mean that factories and businesses aren’t just paying for energy, they’re getting paid not to waste energy. The economy as a whole is producing a lot more using less energy. And we’re also using less dirty energy.

Earlier this month, I unveiled our Clean Power Plan -- the first set of nationwide standards to end the limitless dumping of carbon pollution from our power plants, the single most important step America has ever taken to combat climate change. The Clean Power Plan is also going to accelerate the third way that we’re cutting emissions, creating jobs, saving folks money -- and that’s by generating more clean energy.

When I took office, I pledged to double our production of wind and solar by the end of my first term. We met that goal ahead of schedule.   As Harry just mentioned, six years ago, the Recovery Act marked the single biggest investment in clean energy in our history. And by the way, what we did was not revolutionary. We did what the federal government has always done -- we invested in promising new technologies to spur private sector investment and innovation all across the country.

Today, there are thousands of renewable energy projects employing tens of thousands of Americans all across the country. Right here in Nevada, for example, renewable energy generation has increased 180 percent since I took office. Today, America is number one in wind power, generating three times as much wind energy as we did in 2008. There are now more than 500 wind manufacturers across 43 states supplying the wind industry -- an industry that supports more than 50,000 jobs and supplies enough energy to power 16 million homes.

Some states have made even greater strides. Last year, for example, Iowa generated nearly 30 percent of its electricity from the wind. And if we keep investing in wind, rather than making shortsighted cuts or chasing mindless austerity, wind could provide as much as 35 percent of America’s electricity and supply renewable power in all 50 states by the year 2050. 

As well as we're doing in wind, we're making even more progress on solar.   I notice you got a lot of sun around here.  America generates 20 times as much solar power as we did in 2008 -- 20 times. Last year was solar’s biggest year ever. Prices fell by 10 percent; installations climbed by 30 percent. Every three minutes, another home or business in America goes solar. Every three weeks, we install as much solar capacity as we did in all of 2008. And the world’s largest solar installation came online last year, with 9 million solar panels generating enough electricity to power more than 100,000 homes with clean, renewable energy -- not in Germany, not in China, not in Saudi Arabia -- right here in the United States of America.

In fact, over the past six years, the federal government has approved 34 commercial-scale solar projects and the transmission infrastructure that goes with them on public lands across the West. We approved one new project just today in California that will ultimately power another 100,000-plus homes. And right here in Las Vegas, we’ve cut the time it takes to permit solar projects in half.

And one of the reasons we’ve done this is not just because it’s good for the environment and good for the overall economy -- it takes workers to install all this new capacity. And that’s why, last year, the solar industry added jobs 10 times faster than the rest of the economy. Solar has helped a lot of construction workers find work while Congress was dragging its feet on funding infrastructure projects. In fact, the solar industry now employs twice as many Americans as mining coal.   We’re helping more veterans find work with our Solar Ready Vets Program, with a goal of training 75,000 solar workers who have been veterans by 2020. That is a goal we can achieve.

So federal investments have helped support all this innovation, and now is not the time to pull back on those investments. Now is not the time to insist on massive cuts to the investments in R&D that help drive our economy, including the hundreds of millions of dollars in cuts that many Republicans want to take from these successful, job-creating clean energy programs. It’s thanks in part to these investments that there are already places across the country where clean power from the sun is finally cheaper than conventional power from your utility -- power often generated by burning coal or gas.

And it’s impossible to overstate what this means. For decades, we’ve been told that it doesn’t make economic sense to switch to renewable energy. Today, that’s no longer true.   And you don’t have to take my word for it. Many of our biggest businesses are backing up that fact. Walmart has the most installed on-site solar capacity of any company in America. They’re not in the business of giving away money.  Google is the largest corporate buyer of renewable energy in the world; companies like Apple and Costco close behind. They’re not doing this just out of altruism. They’re doing it because it means big cost savings. And that can mean big things for local communities.

I’ll just give you one example. Google plans to retrofit the site of a retired coal plant in Alabama into a data hub run entirely on renewable energy. Recently, they created a new online tool that lets you plug in your address to see if solar power is the smart choice for you.

So if you care about climate change, the very fact that companies realize clean energy and energy efficiency are not only cost-effective but cost-saving should give you a big jolt of hope.

The point is America is making incredible progress on this issue. And that’s one of the reasons why I recently committed this country to getting 20 percent of our energy from renewables beyond hydroelectric power by 2030.   And, by the way, when we do smart things in America, that wakes up the world. So Brazil’s President joined me for that announcement, committed her country to the same goal. But to meet that goal, we have to triple where we are today. So I’m here to give you hope, but not complacency.

The private sector is increasingly all in. Cities and states are increasingly doing their part. Just today, 15 cities from Seattle to Chicago to New York are joining 19 cities that have already pledged to reduce emissions and invest in climate resilience. Leaders in California are aiming to generate 50 percent of their electricity from renewables by 2030 -- 50 percent -- while cutting carbon pollution from oil by 50 percent.

And as long as I’m President, the federal government is going to do its part beyond the investments that we’ve already made to promote this issue. So last month, we announced a new initiative to make it easier for businesses and low-income households to install low-cost solar. Today, we’re announcing new public- and private- sector commitments that will add new solar capacity on more than 40 military bases.   And that’s an investment that will create jobs, save taxpayer dollars and reduce emissions.

The Department of Energy is announcing a new push to deploy innovative “distributed energy” resources like micro-grids or rooftop solar with battery storage, and will offer loan guarantees for projects like these. And we’re going to make it even easier for individual homeowners to put solar panels on their roof with no upfront cost. So specifically, we’re going to take steps to expand the use of a tool we call PACE, which helps you pay for solar panels through the future savings on your energy bills.

So we’re taking steps that allow more Americans to join this revolution with no money down. You don’t have to share my passion for fighting climate change. A lot of Americans are going solar and becoming more energy efficient not because they’re tree huggers -- although trees, you know, are important -- just want you to know -- but because they’re cost-cutters. They like saving money. And I’m all for a consumer saving money, because that means they can spend it on other stuff. Solar isn’t just for the green crowd anymore -- it’s for the green eyeshade crowd, too.

Now, we’ve still got a lot of work to do and significant obstacles remain. And obviously, all of you know that very well. For all the promise of solar, it’s still a small share of our economy in energy mix -- less than 1 percent. Wind makes up almost 5 percent. But here’s the thing: Solar made up almost one-third of all new generating capacity last year. Wind power made up another 20 percent. So we see the trend lines. We see where technology is taking us. We see where consumers want to go. And that, let’s be honest, has some big fossil fuel interests pretty nervous -- to the point where they’re trying to fight renewable energy.

Now, it’s one thing if you’re consistent in being free market. It’s another thing when you’re free market until it’s solar that’s working and people want to buy, and suddenly you’re not for it anymore.  That’s a problem.

There’s a big shift going underway that goes beyond simply putting solar panels on your home. Yes, the number of homes with rooftop solar has grown from fewer than 20,000 to about 600,000 over the past decade or so. More than 80 percent of that capacity was added in the past four years. But the real revolution going on here is that people are beginning to realize they can take more control over their own energy -- what they use, how much, when.

For decades, our energy system basically worked one way: Utilities generated power, usually by burning fossil fuels. They ran lines into the home or business. We paid for it. It wasn’t a real exciting business, there wasn’t a lot of innovation. We didn’t think about it much in our daily lives -- until the energy bill came in the mail. And the economy grew under that model, at a time when we were less worried about dependence on foreign fuels, and at a time when we were less conscious about the impacts it was having on the environment.

But in just a few short years, that’s begun to change in a profound way. Six years ago, smart meters were pretty rare. Today, 60 million consumers have access to detailed information about how much energy we use, how we use it, when we use it. So we can use that information to change our habits, use energy more efficiently, save more money without a whole lot of sacrifice. We can control our thermostats from our smartphones. New appliances and smart devices can tell when energy prices are cheapest, and do laundry, or wash the dishes, or charge our car at those times.

We’ve got windows and building materials that can actually generate power. And we can even tell our utility company that we want our homes powered by renewable energy, or we can call up a contractor and put solar panels on our roof by the weekend -- and that empowers us not only to generate affordable clean energy, but to store it in battery packs, or sell it back to the grid.

That’s power. That’s the future. That's happening right now. It’s an American energy revolution that’s like evolving from the telegraph to the smartphone in less than a decade. It's happening fast.

Now, the good news is some utilities recognize this; they see what’s happening. They’re adapting their business model to seize the opportunities of this emerging energy reality. We have to lift up some of those success stories and the innovations that are taking place.

So San Antonio’s municipal utility is standing up its own rooftop solar program. Southern Company is partnering with Nest and Tesla on power storage so we can use renewable energy better. Oklahoma Gas and Electric is empowering its customers to enroll in smart metering that uses electricity when it’s cheaper, not when it’s most expensive.

But while change this fast presents new opportunities, it is invariably going to create resistance from some fossil fuel interests who want to protect the old, outdated status quo. And there are some legitimate issues around how does a new distributed system work, and folks have some costs and how do we deal with those things, and those are important for us to address. But when you start seeing massive lobbying efforts backed by fossil fuel interests, or conservative think tanks, or the Koch brothers pushing for new laws to roll back renewable energy standards or prevent new clean energy businesses from succeeding -- that's a problem. That's not the American way. That's not progress. That's not innovation. That’s rent seeking and trying to protect old ways of doing business and standing in the way of the future.

I mean, think about this. Ordinarily, these are groups that tout themselves as champions of the free market. If you start talking to them about providing health care for folks who don't have health insurance, they’re going crazy -- “this is socialism, this is going to destroy America.” But in this situation, they’re trying to undermine competition in the marketplace, and choke off consumer choice, and threaten an industry that’s churning out new jobs at a fast pace.   And that has the potential to hurt a lot of communities -- and set back America’s leadership in fighting climate change. They’re even fighting to protect billions of dollars of taxpayer dollars in corporate welfare each year that's going to fossil fuel companies.

Now, what’s interesting is that their actions have conjured up some pretty strange bedfellows. In some states, we got Green Party and Tea Party teaming up to protect our freedom to choose clean energy. It is rare that the Tea Party leaders and I are on the same side of an issue.  I agree with them here.   And just because I agree with them, I don't want them to change their minds now.  I promise there are all kinds of other things you can whoop me.

But this is important, and they are absolutely right on this fight. This is not, and should not be, a Republican-versus-Democratic issue.   This should be an issue that can bring everybody together.   If you're a progressive, you should care about this. If you're a libertarian, you should care about this. If you just want to save some money, you should care about it. And if you care about the future of our children and grandchildren, you should care about it.

So here, and across the country, this is about whether big polluters control the system, or whether consumers have freedom to choose cleaner, cheaper, more efficient energy; whether we protect old ways of doing business even when they’re not efficient, or we dream up new business models that bring new technologies into our homes and businesses, and new jobs into our communities. This is about the past versus the future. And America believes in the future.

And to make that future a reality, we got to have everybody -- utilities, entrepreneurs, workers, businesses, consumers, energy regulators, tree huggers, Tea Partiers -- everybody has got to seize the opportunities before us.

There is something big happening in America right now. For the first time, we can actually see what our clean energy future looks like. And, yes, the closer we get to this future, the opposition will fight even harder to keep things the way they’ve been. Folks will get louder in some of the backlash, and they’ll put out press releases suggesting that somehow this is bad for America. We can't pay attention to that. Folks whose interests or ideologies run counter to where we need to go, we've got to be able to politely, but firmly say, sorry, we're moving forward.

And anybody who suggests that moving to a clean energy economy is going to somehow cripple our economy, or lead to fewer jobs, if they hold up snowballs in February as if that somehow disproves decades of scientific data -- (laughter) -- if they suggest that we've got to set our sights lower and do less or delay action because we can't figure this stuff out -- I just want everybody to remember, we've heard these arguments before. We have engaged in this debate many times before. It's taken different forms, but this is an age-old debate in America. It's a debate between the folks who say, “no, we can't,” and the folks who say, “yes, we can.”   Between those who fear the future and those who are eager to seize the future.

And although sometimes there are some growing pains, America always comes down on the side of the future. We’ve always been a people who reach -- proudly and boldly and unafraid -- for that more promising future. We refuse to surrender the hope of a clean energy future to those who fear it and fight it, and sometimes provide misinformation about it.

Because the naysayers always underestimate what the American people are capable of. We prove that every day. All across this country, right now, you’ve got once-dusty plains and rundown buildings that are now solar fields and rooftop arrays. All across this country, right now, once-shuttered factories are humming, retraining workers to build wind turbines -- technology that we’re not just importing now, now we’re making it here and we’re exporting it -- technology made in America.   All across this country, once-darkened plants are now full of rehired autoworkers manufacturing some of the world’s most energy-efficient cars -- cars that make you proud to be an American.

This generation of Americans is hammering into place the high-tech foundations of a clean energy age. It’s the same people who first harnessed the power of the atom, the power of the sun; the same spirit of people who connected the continent by road and by rail, who connected the world through our science and our imaginations; the same people who set foot on the Moon, and put a rover on Mars, and probes the farthest reaches of our solar system.

That’s what Americans do. We can do anything. And you guys are proving it every single day, and I’m going to be right there beside you. Congratulations.

God bless you. God bless this country we love. Thank you.

$2 million in funding for Fargo flood protection

Washington, DC – August 25, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced $2 million in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding to improve flood protection in Fargo.

“Flooding touches every corner of our state, but protections like this can help shield communities from the worst impacts of flooding in the future,” said Heitkamp. “These federal funds will shore up Fargo’s defenses and help the city make needed improvements. In the Senate, I’ll continue pushing for kind of long-term solutions North Dakota needs to be safe from flooding.”

The FEMA grant is in response to May 2011 flooding, and will fund sanitary sewer system improvements at the waste water treatment plant within the City of Fargo. The proposed activity will provide wet weather flow relief for the Broadway Interceptor and minimize the risk of sanitary sewer backup into public and private property during wet weather conditions, according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Heitkamp is a longtime advocate for increased and permanent flood protections in North Dakota.

Earlier this month Heitkamp announced nearly $6 in federal funding to construct a floodwall and make infrastructure improvements to protect the City of Minot’s Water Treatment Plant during high water events. In June 2014, President Obama signed into law the bipartisan bill Heitkamp pushed for – the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) – which supports water infrastructure projects in North Dakota including permanent flood protection for more than 200,000 residents in Fargo and surrounding area through the Fargo-Moorhead Diversion project.

Editorials –

Sota editorial –

Not givin’ my name,

but this time ain’t the same

By CD Floro


Wanted to kill myself a lot

but chickened, not like

some, would

only cut, first

the arms

but people saw

and what’s

always worst


got hauled off

learned since


only one gets

in trouble for

tellin’ is my

own self

since when my own –

but never’ve named him

and won’t, but anyways

ev’ry time was me

got punished

nobody who’d done

any hurtin’ on me

come to lock it all in

don’t tell nothin’

learned to hide it


cuttin’ was a way

wanted to know

could I still

feel pain

so numb all

the time,

be layin’ there

wonder can I still

feel? ‘n cut

needed to do

it cause

deserved it

‘n then the meth

wow oh geeze high

‘n higher, took

me outa here, but

couldn’t get ‘nough

easy though, just

put out for more

I’d find a guy

who loved me

that’s the best

of livin’, would

keep me, buy

cool things, but

got me doin’ it

all over

makin’ money


in cities

then he was

gone, found

somebody else

‘n I’d got hurt,

beat up, near

died couple a times

but through it all

was one person

come to mean

somethin’ a

counselor lady, who

cared, didn’t have that

fake face smile bullshit

others have

can tell hey I’m here

for you but ain’t really

listenin’ cause don’t

want to mess up

their own self with my

messed up head

years passed on

but went back

last Tuesday

said hey, I’m doin’

good now, bad days

are done ain’t doin’ meth

no more, hugged her

said if it weren’t for you

I’d be gone, long gone

made her cry, we both

did, lots a tears

we wiped away

same’s back years ago

she was helpin’

when it was the worst

gotta a new guy

now, ‘n I’m an adult

and w’ere gonna

have a baby

and yeah

ain’t usin’

ain’t usin’

meth no more


Brief editorial comments from the editor’s desk –

On and Off the Lake Traverse Reservation

What a major milestone event – last week’s Dakotah Language Revitalization and Appreciation Day!

It was so moving to see our Oyate treasured elders honored for having helped create a much-needed new Dakotah dictionary. But it was a time for tears, as so many who helped make this happen have gone on their spiritual journeys. They will not be forgotten, nor their part in this major project. This project, this dictionary, will help continue the tradition, the language that they and those who remain with us, worked so hard to protect.

Please see our photo highlights elsewhere in this Sota.

And note that the Dakotah dictionaries are on sale through the SWO Dakotah Language Institute.


We’d like to send out Wopida Tanka to Oyate who have listened to members of our SWO Mni Wiconi working group who have been attending your District meetings.

The message of what’s been draining Oyate water and polluting the ground and water is one we are all very passionate about, and we are grateful to you for having us come.

Tribal Council also. We have met informally several times, and you should know that they too are concerned about how the problems have been worsening at a frightening rate.

Part of the story is, perhaps a major point, is that the predicted “water wars of the future” are really not in the future at all. They are here.

And the aquifers of the Lake Traverse Reservation, your water Oyate, are a prime target.

Again, wopida tanka.

We have gotten support from the three Districts we visited last week – Big Coulee, Enemy Swim and Lake Traverse. We plan to bring the proposed resolution to the other four Districts during your September meetings.

For those who have not seen it yet, here it is:

To All Seven Districts of the Lake Traverse Reservation

Proposed resolution for your consideration to act upon and send to the SWO Tribal Council with your District Council member:

We direct our District Council member to acknowledge and support efforts of the SWO Mni Wiconi grassroots organization:

1. To support the SWO Mni Wiconi in its mission to assist the Tribe in asserting control over all surface and ground waters in and adjoining the Lake Traverse Reservation as a treaty right, including the water in its aquifers extending beyond the boundaries of the Reservation. This is to be done in cooperation with non-Indian individuals and organizations on and off the Reservation working to preserve the water and environment.

2. To incorporate as an entity of the SWO Tribe in order to qualify for grant assistance and to facilitate collaboration with Tribal programs which have overlapping responsibilities in areas including environment, natural resources, health, agriculture, and cultural preservation.

3. To host a well-publicized informative/educational meeting to share with the Oyate about how their water rights are being violated and what action is needed, with the international/treaty rights attorney present for questions and answers.

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the SWO Mni Wiconi.


Our own NAMMY-winning Oyate Bluedog Blues Band will be performing at the SWO Fall Festival Saturday afternoon and evening at Memorial Park in Sisseton Saturday, September 12th. Bluedog will share the stage with the longtime favorite SWO sobriety band Prairie Winds.

Plans are for Bluedog to do a show at 12:00 noon and another at 2:00 p.m., with Prairie Winds performing at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m. But this schedule is subject to any number of changes at this point.

Bluedog is coming to help the SWO Mni Wiconi volunteers increase awareness for supporting the Tribe’s assertion of its treaty rights over how much water gets drained out of its aquifers and stopping the documented explosion of toxic waste polluting its surface and ground waters.

Clean and ample water is a right not only for tribal people but for everyone!

Stop buy our stand and learn more about rights to your water resources, Oyate. And consider purchasing one of our posters for a donation of $1 or more. Proceeds will be used to have water samples tested in a certified lab for our attorney.


Please read our editorial poem in this week’s Sota, it’s dear to our heart.

Also, after reading, consider asking your District Council represent a couple of questions.

We wrote a rough draft of that poem on Friday, August 28.

Ask, please, on that day, how many mental health counselors were available to handle juvenile cases that day?

Consider that in 2013 there were caseloads of 279 girls and about 40 boys, according to General Council reports.

Now, again on Monday, August 31st as this newspaper goes to print, ask again.

How many mental health counselors are on the front lines now to manage cases and answer crisis calls?

We have a serious problem concerning allocation of resources, don’t we?


Elder's Meditation:

"The devastated earth, the air, water, the extinct species of mankind, animalkind, and plantkind, the drugs, suicides, family separations - these are all the result of false ceremonies." -- Barney Bush, SHAWNEE

All life is a ceremony. Every act is a ceremony creating a result in our lives. Every ceremony we do always brings results to our lives. If we do bad medicine to others, we do bad medicine to ourselves. If we keep on doing bad ceremonies, we will eventually destroy ourselves. Any time we live our lives out of harmony, we are doing bad ceremonies. Any time we treat anything with disrespect whether it is another human being or a plant or an animal, we are performing bad ceremonies. These ceremonies not only have an effect on ourselves but will simultaneously affect everything. We need to use our power well, only do good ceremonies.

My Creator, teach me only good ceremonies. Teach me ceremonies that accomplish good for all the people. Good ceremonies cause good results. Teach me ceremonies that are helpful.


Words to consider (or, perhaps not!):

Some have been thought brave because they were afraid to run away. Thomas Fuller (1608 - 1661)

The best way to predict the future is to invent it. Alan Kay

The nation behaves well if it treats the natural resources as assets which it must turn over to the next generation increased, and not impaired, in value. Theodore Roosevelt (1858 - 1919), Speech before the Colorado Live Stock Association, Denver, Colorado, August 19, 1910

The great tragedy of Science - the slaying of a beautiful hypothesis by an ugly fact. Thomas H. Huxley (1825 - 1895)

We are so accustomed to disguise ourselves to others that in the end we become disguised to ourselves. Francois de La Rochefoucauld (1613 - 1680)

I will never be an old man. To me, old age is always 15 years older than I am. Bernard M. Baruch (1870 - 1965)

When a man is wrapped up in himself, he makes a pretty small package. John Ruskin (1819 - 1900)


The Sota is always looking for news of the Oyate.

If you have information and/or photos of newsworthy happenings in your family or community, please consider sharing with your Sota staff.

For submission deadlines and other information, see below:

Except for holidays copy to be considered for publication – news, advertising, editorial opinion letters, etc. – is to be submitted to: Sota, P.O. Box 5, Wilmot, SD 57279 by 10:00 a.m. on Thursday. FAX and e-mail submissions will be accepted until 12:00 noon on Friday (with the exception of letters to the editor/open letters to the Oyate, or “opinion” letters, which must be received by 10:00 a.m. Thursday).

If you are writing an opinion letter, please note that it must be signed and the author’s name will appear in print. Letters must not contain libel and must be brief, ideally 500 words or less. Letters may be edited for content. Omissions will be identified with periods . . . editor’s explanations will be provided in [brackets]. Readers who want access to unedited versions will need to contact the authors.

Earlier receipt of copy is always appreciated. So, if you are aware of a date or message that needs to be publicized or advertised, please let us know about it in advance of the weekly deadline.

The preferred way to submit typed articles and ads, art and photos, is by e-mail.

The editor can be reached at the following e-mail address:

For more information, leave a message on the Sota production office voicemail (605) 938-4452, or send a fax to the 24-hour dedicated line (605) 938-4676.

-- CDF

Obituaries –

Services held last week for Louise Jones

Funeral Service for Louise B. Jones, Iyan Win “ Strong Woman” 88 of Sisseton, SD were held on Tuesday afternoon, August 25, 2015 at the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Community Center, Agency Village, SD with the Rev. Fr. Charles Chan, John Cloud III and the Episcopal Lay Readers officiating.

Pianists were Billy Kohl and Kay Bursheim.

Pallbearers were Jarrod Lee, Nate Johnson, Kingsmill Johnson, Felix Johnson Jr., James Shindlebower, Mark Shindlebower, Jarrod Appenay, Patrick Deutsch Jr., John DuMarce, Samples German Jr. and Michael Wakeman.

Honorary pallbearers were Deborah J Hill, Alvina Hayes, Joan Renville, Darlene King, Donna Bursheim, Marvel Bursheim, Debbie Jones, Nita Kirk, Beverly Wakeman and Felix Johnson Sr.

Interment is in the St. Mary’s Episcopal Cemetery, Agency Village, SD.

There were wake services Sunday at Cahill Funeral Chapel and Monday at the Community Center.

The Cahill Funeral Chapel was in charge of arrangements.

Louise was born on February 10, 1927 in rural Peever, SD to David and Grace (Robertson) Renville.

She attended Old Agency Day School and graduated from Flandreau Indian High School. Louise worked in Hastings, NE making ammunition during World War II. Louise was united in marriage to Kingsmill Jones on February 14, 1949 in Wheaton, MN. They made their home in Sisseton until 1954 when they moved to Redwood Falls, MN in 1961. They then moved to Flandreau until 1976 at which time they moved to Sisseton SD. Louise’s working years were spent working for the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Flandreau and Wahpeton at the Indian Boarding Schools. Louise loved to play bingo, bowling, playing cards, penny annie, softball and cleaning fish and wild game. Louise was a caregiver to many and raised many children. Louise passed away at the Tekakwitha Living Center on Sunday, August 23, 2015.

Louise is survived by her children Juanita (Rudy) Jones of Sisseton, SD; Karen (Ed) Coddington of East Grand Forks, MN; Eleanor Kirk of Sisseton, SD; Barbara Kirk of Sisseton, SD; brothers Harvey (Ramona) Renville Sr. of Agency Village, SD; Charlie (Joan) Renville of Agency Village, SD; 20 grandchildren; 53 great-grandchildren, and 27 great-great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and three sons, Ronald, John, and Raymond Jones; two brothers Edward and Clifford Renville; eight sisters Gladys, Faith, Rachel Renville, Gustie Redearth, Violet Barse, Marcelaine Kirk, Juanita Shindlebower, and Eleraine Miller.

Services held for Solomon J. Hill

Solomon James "Jim" Hill II, age 56, passed away Sunday August 23, 2015 from an aggressive form of colon cancer. He was in the comfort of his own home while surrounded by his family and friends. He is now at peace and no longer in pain.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Solomon and Louis Hill.

Survivors include his sister, Sarina (Dan) Harter; brother, David; sons, Solomon and Vincent; nephews, Ryan, Justin, and Derek; niece, Christa; longtime friend, Judy, "Spirit" brother, Robin (Peggy) Monnin; as well as numerous cousins, aunts, uncles, and countless friends.

Jim was born on March 5, 1959 at Coulee Dam, WA.

Upon graduating from University High School in 1978, he volunteered as a fire fighter and worked as a part-time EMT before being employed as a commercial painter for most of his life.

He was proud to be an enrolled member of the Colville Confederated Tribes and Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate. He was an avid advocate for his tribes and various Native American and environmental causes.

Jim lived his life the way he wanted. His hobbies included listening to the Grateful Dead, The Who, and The Beatles, riding his motorcycle, and fishing at Buffalo Lake on the Colville Indian Reservation.

He was known as a "free spirit" and a hippie with a kind soul, who loved the environment and animals, especially cats. He left behind his "Kitty Kitty" who was holding his hand as the time neared.

He had a loving heart and would do anything for anyone in need. He would give anyone the shirt off his back and give you his last dollar, even though he didn't have much for himself.

As a gift to Jim, he would love that you would do an unexpected act of kindness for someone or an unsuspecting soul.

A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held at 3 o'clock, Thursday September 3rd at the Pines Mausoleum at 12216 E. 16th.

Immediately following will be the burial, at South Pines Cemetery located at 32nd and Highway 27, a luncheon will take place afterwards at Spokane Valley Nazarene Church, 15515 E. 20th, Spokane Valley.

Everyone is welcome.

Notice of editorial policy

(Editor’s note: The following comes from the editor’s column and the Sota “deadlines and policies” statement published weekly in the Sota.)

Copy to be considered for publication – news, advertising, editorial opinion letters, etc. – are to be submitted to: Sota, P.O. Box 5, Wilmot, SD 57279 by 10:00 a.m. on Thursday. FAX and e-mail submissions will be accepted until 12:00 noon on Friday (with the exception of letters to the editor/Open letter to the Oyate, or “opinion” letters, which must be received no later than 10:00 a.m. Thursday).

If you are writing an opinion letter, please note that it must be signed and the author’s name will appear in print. Letters must not contain libel or offensive language and must be brief, 500 words or less. Letters may be edited for content. Omissions will be identified with periods . . . editor’s explanations will be provided in [brackets]. Readers who want access to unedited versions will need to contact the authors.

Three injured, one seriously, in crash near Walcott, ND

Forum News Service – August 29, 2015 – Three people were injured in a motorcycle crash Saturday afternoon a mile north of here on Richland County Road 26, according to the North Dakota Highway Patrol.

Lawrence Quien, 72, of Fergus Falls, Minn., was maneuvering his motorcycle through a curve when he drifted off the edge of the road. He drove his motorcycle back onto the road before losing control, sliding across both lanes and striking another motorcycle ridden by Weston Quinn, 43, of Sisseton, S.D., and Nichole Peterson, 34, of Fergus Falls.

All three riders were thrown from their motorcycles. Quien and Quinn were transported to Fargo hospitals by ambulance. Peterson, who was seriously injured, was air-lifted from the scene and transported to a Fargo hospital.

Quinn and Peterson were wearing helmets; Quien was not.

The crash remains under investigation by the patrol.

SWO attorney named to NARF Board of Directors

Kurt BlueDog, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, has been named to the Board of Directors of the Native American Rights Fund.

Kurt BlueDog has been in the active practice of federal Indian law for nearly 40 years almost exclusively on behalf of Indian tribal governments.  Kurt was born and raised on the Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Indian Reservation in South Dakota.  After he graduated from the University of South Dakota in 1972, he served as a commissioned officer in the Army paratroopers.  He graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Law in 1977 and is a member of the State Bars of Minnesota and Wisconsin, several tribal courts, the United States Supreme Court, and numerous federal, district, and appellate courts.

Early on in his legal career, Kurt worked for the Native American Rights Fund (NARF) in Boulder, Colorado, as a staff attorney for approximately seven years.  His experience at NARF involved extensive litigation experience in the areas of Indian education, economic development, tribal sovereignty, American Indian religious freedom, land rights, tribal recognition, corrections, and housing.  Currently in his private practice, he is involved in litigation, administrative, and legislative activity representing tribal concerns.  The emphasis of his practice has been in the area of tribal commercial law, corporate law, gaming, and economic development.  He has represented many tribes over the years, to include service as General Counsel to the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and the Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Tribe (his tribe) for over twenty years.

Kurt has served as an adjunct professor teaching federal Indian law at William Mitchell College of Law and the Hamline University School of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Additionally, he has served as the Chief Judge for the Fond du Lac Chippewa Tribal Court for 10 years and the Prairie Island Sioux Tribal Court for 11 years.  For the past 15 years, he has served part-time as the Chief Judge for the Lower Sioux Indian Community.

In addition to his legal work, Kurt has served on numerous boards and is currently serving on the Minnesota Historical Society Executive Board.  He has served on the Executive Committee at the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) for over twenty years.  He was recently named the Best Lawyer in the field of Native American law for the Minneapolis area.  For the past fifteen years, Kurt has been rated “AV Preeminent,” the highest possible peer review rating in legal ability and ethical standards by the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory.

About NARF

As part of the war on poverty launched in the mid-1960s under the Office of Economic Opportunity, government funded legal services programs were established around the country to provide legal services to poor and disadvantaged people. Many of these programs were located on or near Indian reservations. As these programs began working with their Indian clients, a common realization soon developed among them that Indians had special legal problems which were, for the most part, governed and controlled by a specialized and little-known area of the law known as “Indian Law” — a complex body of law composed of hundreds of Indian treaties and court decisions, and thousands of federal Indian statutes, regulations and administrative rulings. As legal services contended with this area of Indian law, they became more aware of its relevance and applicability to the problems of their Indian clients. This was especially so for legal services located on reservations where the presence of trust land, tribal resources and tribal government institutions necessarily involved the most basic tenets of Indian law. Soon, legal services lawyers became involved in various matters with national implications, and it was clear to those working in legal services and to others working for Indian rights that cases involving major national issues of Indian law needed to be handled with the greatest consideration. The idea began to form that a national organization was needed, staffed by Indian advocates with experience and expertise in Indian law and sufficiently funded in order that important Indian cases were not lost or abandoned for lack of funds.

In 1970 with funding from the Ford Foundation, California Indian Legal Services — one of the federally-funded legal services programs serving California Indians – implemented a pilot project to provide legal services to Indians on a national level. That project became known as the Native American Rights Fund (NARF).

One year later, the Native American Rights Fund separated from California Indian Legal Services and relocated to Boulder, Colorado where it is more centrally located. NARF incorporated separately with an all-Indian Board of Directors, and in a few short years, the Native American Rights Fund grew from a three-lawyer staff to a firm of forty full-time staff members, with fifteen attorneys. That same year, with start-up funding from the Carnegie Corporation, NARF established the National Indian Law Library now located at NARF’s main office in Boulder.

Poem by Harry O’

If the Lord wills

By: Harry 0'

"Look at me and be saved, all you ends of the Earth! For I am God, and there is no other." Isa 45:22

John 1:1 & 14, Romans 11:36, I Cor. 8:6, Col. 1:13-18


Father, thank you for sending your only begotten son,

Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior and what he has done;

We'd be lost if He hadn't died for our iniquity,

But sadly even those with eyes still cannot true see.

Isa 9:6-7, Isa.52:13 - 53:12, John 10:15-18, John 10:30


I was always so grateful to see that first glimpse of light,

In the early morning when I still had a little sight;

But since that blessed sight I had, has slowly slipped away,

Through His gifts I seek to teach and comfort other today

I car. 10:24, Eph. 4:7-8, Col. 3:12-17, James 1:17


A question was asked of me which many others asked too,

And I am so sorry I had no good answer for you;

I'm growing in His word yet I have much to learn you see,

And my friend while on Earth much will remain a mystery.

I Car. 8:3, II Cor 4:16, Gal 6:3, Romans 11:33


For who can truly say why bad things happen in this world,

One thing for certain though our enemies darts have been hurled;

He know His time is short so he out there to deceive,

In this country He's already deceived some I do believe.

Gen. 18:20, Gen. 19:24, 1 Cor. 6:9, I Cor. 10:11, II Tim. 2:24-6, I Peter 5:6-10


But with Christ living in our heart He'll be our strength you see,

And with the Shield of Faith we can ward off the enemy;

Which doesn't mean that we're free of tribulations my friends,

But stay faithful for we'll have peace when this stricken world ends.

John 16:33, Eph. 5:10-14, Col. 1:27, I John 4:4


But you must invite him in and please do not hesitate,

For were He to come tonight, tomorrow will be too late;

And we'll soon leave this fallen world for our new home my friend,

Where there is no death, tears or pain and all abuse will end.

Mark 13, Acts 4:12, I Test. 4: 13-18, Rev. 21:1-7


Now I'm not perfect so apt stumble now and then,

And when I have sinned I'll confess it and move on again;

Hell is a real place so we should thank God heaven is too,

Which is why my tahansi I've tried so hard to reach you.

Isa. 14:9-11, John 14:1-3, I John 1:7-10, I Tes. 2:19, I Phil 3:13-14


Those of old made flesh offerings for they thought that was the way,

But most likely they hadn't heard of Christ as we have today;

But if you choose to follow that old path and will not return,

At least for your loved ones souls open the scriptures and learn,

Proverbs 24:11-12, Matthew 18: 10-14, Luke 15:10, Acts 17:30-31


Yes I once was lost and lived a self-centered life my friend,

But now I live for Christ and brought that life to an end;

Now my heart's desire is to rescue those whom I love,

So that when he does return we will all be found above.

II Cor 5:15, Romans 6:23, James 5:19-20


Some of you may not even know me but I still had to try,

For God loves you so much not willing that nay should die;

Now my friends should you sense his call do make the right choice,

Ana'gopgan, listen, it could just be a still a small voice.

I Kings 19:11-12, I Tim. 2:3-4, II Peter 3:9, Rev. 3:20


None of us know of the day when the Lord will call us home,

So I've done my best to reach those who still doubt, in this poem;

And I may never know who has truly heard me today,

But if the Lord wills, I'll see you when he takes us away.


"Do not marvel at this, for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear his voice, and come forth, those have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation."

Navigating the federal government

By Rep. Kristi Noem

August 14, 2015

Every day, South Dakotans need to interact directly with dozens of federal agencies. Maybe you receive health care through the Veterans Administration or Medicare. Perhaps your family is looking to grow through an international adoption, which requires coordination with the U.S. State Department. Maybe you receive benefits from the Social Security Administration or operate your family business with a loan from the Small Business Administration or have a CRP contract with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. At some point or another, most of us will have to deal with a government agency. While we hope it goes smoothly and that they serve you with the respect you deserve, we know it unfortunately doesn’t always turn out that way.

The federal government can be a very difficult, complicated, and confusing organization to navigate. But that’s where my office can help. We call it “casework” and I believe it’s one of the most important functions of a congressional office.

Many times, we can help you with a single phone call. Perhaps you’re simply not sure which agency or division you should contact. We can help you figure that out quickly. We can also help you find exactly who to talk to within an agency to save you time and frustration.

Sometimes, the cases can be more complicated than that, however, and we are here to help you in those scenarios as well. If you can’t get an answer from a federal agency or if you feel you’ve been treated unfairly, we can make a formal inquiry or request information on your behalf. While we cannot guarantee a favorable outcome, we will do our best to help ensure you receive a fair and timely response. This is our way of ensuring the federal government remembers who it is accountable to – and that’s you.

Last year alone, we helped more than 500 constituents navigate federal agencies through our casework. Please know our door is always open to help. If you need immediate assistance, please visit my website at or call my office at 605-878-2868.

I’m incredibly grateful to be able to serve you in this way, so please don’t hesitate to contact my office if you need help.


By Shay Dirtseller

Dear Shay,

My grandson has been getting in trouble since he was a young kid because of gangs. What he and others like him fail to recognize is that we are Native American! I am so tired of hearing these young men and women talking like they are black and imitating these "gangster" lifestyles. It isn't cool and it is embarrassing seeing them call each other the "N word" and talking in slang.

Even as old as some of these ones are they still go around claiming gang affiliations and the ones I have always heard about are E.R.S, some kind of Crip gang and Native Latin kings. NATIVE AMERICANS ARE NOT LATIN for one thing, East river "Skins" are supposedly a Native gang around this area as well but what do they do besides bring shame on our people? As for these "crips" that come from the blacks in inner cities, half of these "gang members" have never been off the reservation to even be saying they lived a "Street life"!

How do I tell my grandson and others like him that it is time to grow up because when he goes to jail none of his "homies" are there for him, his family is and none of them put food on the tables or clothes on anyone’s backs, we do. All they are good for is bringing shame and embarrassment to our people. Young people need to WAKE UP AND GROW UP!

From Reality Check.

Dear Reality Check,

Thank you very much for this topic it hasn't actually come up which is shocking but I know where you are coming from.

As a kid everyone makes mistakes and some do turn to gangs because they want that sense of belonging while others join gangs because deep down they are actually scared, weak and want to finally feel strong/feared. There are many other reasons why kids join gangs but I am not a psychologist and I cannot comment on what drives others to join gangs.

As for the second statement, I agree. I will admit as a youngster growing up in Colorado I hung around with my group of friends from my neighborhood and made bad choices. But after the births of my children I turned my life around. Some of us do grow up and start making good choice because we have seen what that kind of life really brings. It's not glamorous and fun like they see in the movies. It's sad and in that life I have lost friends and people I truly cared about to gang violence and prison. I have seen things I never thought I would see in my life. As you said most of these "gangsters" have never seen the reality of the life they are claiming and most of them should be thankful that they never have.

Furthermore, I wish there was a way to make them wake up and see that this life is not the way but some of them never will. It is a sad truth that these adult parents are allowing their children to see them still act this way but even that doesn't wake them up. Gangs may not be the big issue it once was but it is still an issue that plagues our reservation.

Finally, all you can do is say exactly what you said to me, to your grandson. Tell him to actually think about all the times his "homies" have truly been there to help him out. What have they really done for him and his family besides land him in jail or be there to get him involved in some type of trouble. But more so. Ask him who was really "down" for him when he was locked up, his "homies" or his Family?

And say a prayer for all the ones who are lost so that they may finally find their way and realize that that lifestyle is not a life at all.

Respectfully, Shay.

SWO’s first 1,000 Days Initiative Pregnancy Health Survey is underway

Lifetime wellness is rooted in the first year of life beginning during the weeks before conception.

Parents of newborns will have an opportunity to participate in a survey that will help the SWO’s First 1,000 Days Initiative better understand why some babies are born healthier than others. Parents of the babies born during April & May of this year will receive mail from our partner, South Dakota State University. The first letter is a “heads up” about the survey. The second is the actual survey booklet. Moms and dads are also encouraged to complete their individual surveys online, using their unique identifier number that will be mailed to them. The letters to parents of the newborns born in June will also be in the mail soon. Dads and moms are invited to participate when baby is two to six months old, because the survey also asks questions about what happens during the early weeks of life.

 This is the first-ever survey like this done on the Lake Traverse Reservation, although all the Healthy Start projects in South Dakota did a similar survey in 2007, South Dakota did a State-wide survey last year, and six other Tribes in our region did one last year. This is the first time EVER that fathers have been surveyed! The survey instrument was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 1987 and is currently used in 40 states plus New York City. None of them have ever surveyed fathers, so Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate will be the first.

 South Dakota State University is an ideal partner for this project, because they have all the infrastructure in place. They conducted the State-wide survey last year and are working with the other Tribes. They have the facilities to keep the information confidential and secure, and they will do the data analysis at that end.

 Upon receipt of the survey, each mom and each dad will receive a $20 gift card to thank them for the help they are providing to this Initiative.

Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board receives 5-year CDC agreement

Rapid City, SD (August 11, 2015) – The Great Plains Tribal Chairmen's Health Board was awarded a cooperative agreement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to increase colorectal cancer screening rates within 18 tribes in a four state region - South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Iowa.

The first year funding for the cooperative agreement is $732,400 and the project period is from June 29, 2015 to June 29, 2020. These funds will support increasing the rates of Colorectal Cancer Screening in our tribal communities.

In the United States, Northern Plains American Indian men and women have the highest and second highest cancer incidence rate among all American Indian/Alaskan Native population groups. The same individuals are also at higher risk of developing cancer than non-Hispanic whites and have disproportionate cancer disparities.

The Great Plains Colorectal Cancer Screening Initiative (GPCCSI) will maintain and increase strategies to reduce the age-adjusted annual rate of cancer mortality, decrease the colorectal cancer death rate, increase the rate of provider to patient counseling and increase colorectal cancer screening among AI/AN in the Great Plains region.

The initiative will address CRC screening with activities in partnerships and program coordination, priority evidence based interventions and community-clinical linkages with the NPAI.

The Department of Health and Human Services awards grants through a competitive application and review process.

To learn more about this new initiative, please contact Richard Mousseau at or by phone at 605-721-1922 ext. 110.

About the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen's Health Board (GPTCHB)

Established in 1986, the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen's Health Board (GPTCHB) is an organization representing the 18 tribal communities in the four-state region of South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa. Through public health practices and the formation of tribal partnerships, we work to improve the health of the American Indian peoples we serve by providing public health support and health care advocacy. Serving as a liaison between the Great Plains Tribes and the various Health and Human Services divisions including the Great Plains Area Indian Health Service, GPTCHB works to reduce public health disparities and improve the health and wellness of the American Indian peoples who are members of the 18 Great Plains tribal nations and communities. To learn more visit, or call us at 605-721-1922.

Bill to address ND’s Behavioral, Mental Health challenges

Bismarck, ND – August 25, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced bipartisan legislation she helped introduce that would address mental health challenges in North Dakota by bolstering state and local programs.

As North Dakota has faced increased mental health challenges as there have been more instances of drug abuse and domestic violence, Heitkamp’s bipartisan Mental Health Awareness and Improvement Act would seek solutions to help address mental and behavioral health challenges. The bill would provide increased support for suicide prevention and intervention programs, boost training teachers and school personnel to identify and better understand mental illness, and help children recover from traumatic events.

“Almost everywhere I go in North Dakota the issue of behavioral and mental health comes up – whether it’s addressing depression, supporting children exposed to trauma, helping those struggling with addiction, or preventing suicide,” said Heitkamp. “That’s why I have been working with folks at the local, state and federal levels to make sure communities have the tools they need to deliver behavioral and mental health services. The bipartisan bill I helped introduce would play a critical role in addressing North Dakota’s challenges and helping make sure that all North Dakotans have the support they need to succeed.”

During debate of the Senate No Child Left Behind reform legislation, Heitkamp worked with both sides of the aisle to restore critical access to mental health integration resources for schools in North Dakota and across the country – including those on tribal lands. The activities would provide support for suicide, bullying, and violence prevention, as well as mental health and trauma resources, so schools have the opportunity to work with health systems and higher education to provide effective conflict resolutions and healthy learning environments for students and families.

In September 2014, Heitkamp launched her Strong & Safe Communities Initiative to help address some of the emerging safety challenges facing the state by bringing a greater focus to keeping North Dakota's communities strong and families safe in their homes. One of the key focuses of Heitkamp’s Strong & Safe Communities Initiative is to work with community leaders and advocates to address the state’s behavioral and mental health challenges. Heitkamp has also been working to reduce the effects of traumatic stress and provide mental health support among young people – particularly in Native communities, where rates of youth suicide are staggering.

The value of family love

By Richard P. Holm MD

I appreciate how the old prayer goes, "Bless the food before us, the family beside us, and the love between us..."

Our youngest son Preston recently had a break-in at his home. They took his computer with his pictures and all the songs he created. They also got away with my old film-dependent camera which was full of undeveloped pictures he had taken. He decried that it wasn't the loss of the computer or the camera; it was the loss of memories and ideas contained within. He was discouraged that he dreamt he caught them breaking into his house and ended up choking them and hitting them with a baseball bat.

It brought back the memory of advice one of my patients gave me one day, "If you want to destroy your enemy, make them hate." I know how self-destructive hate can be. In that sense, the thieves got my son twice, once for the robbery and once for the deep anger they instilled in his heart.

Almost once a year I watch a family self-destruct as children of a dying parent return from afar to criticize the choices that the local family had made, often demanding more aggressive care when the parent is nearing end and it is time to let go.

I have seen lawyers at the bedside of a borderline-competent patient working a change in the will, giving more land to one child than another, resulting in the blackest of disharmony between kids that had grown up together as family, and who will never speak to each other again.

I have seen widows and widowers remarry and find joy once again after the sad death of a spouse, only to have children selfishly scrambling for the spoils of the inheritance, leaving someone in the equation without their fair share. Truly there is nothing more heart-breaking than to see such destructiveness among family members.

But this does not always happen. In fact, more often than not, the death bed of a parent brings great moments of joy. I remember one family in particular surrounded their dying Mother with harmonious hymns in that hospital room as they had the family reunion that hadn't occurred in many years. Families most often come together around a dying parent or sibling joyously sharing family memories, while supporting and loving the one leaving.

Preston found a way to let go of the loss and anger following the robbery and moved on to new equipment and better creativity.


It isn't the material stuff in front of us; it is the family beside us, and the love between us. To hear more from Dr. Holm, watch his TV show, On Call with the Prairie Doc, every Thursday at 7pm CT on South Dakota Public Broadcasting and his website, Dr. Rick Holm wrote this Prairie Doc Perspective for On Call with the Prairie Doc, a weekly program where medical professionals discuss health concerns for the general public. On Call with the Prairie Doc is produced by the Healing Words Foundation in association with the South Dakota State University journalism department and airs Thursdays on South Dakota Public Broadcasting Television at 7 p.m. Central, 6 p.m. Mountain, and streams live at

Youth, school activities highlights –

Education watch on the Lake Traverse Reservation

FACE adults undertaking independent study projects

Submitted by Renee Kwasniewski

ESDS Adult Learning Center Instructor

Enemy Swim Day School FACE adults are developing independent study projects this month.

Independent study time in the afternoon allows adult to develop their interests. It is also the time when GED and basic computer studies are incorporated into the day as well as career exploration.

Last week with fresh produce abundant the group worked together to make salsa. When the sampling was done each student was encouraged to take some home to share with family.

For more information about center based and home based FACE or the Adult Learning Center contact us at 947-4605 ext 3080 or

Youth to gather during United Tribes Summit

Bismarck, ND – UTN – A well-recognized speaker, fitness trainer and businessman is scheduled to lead the Great Plains Tribal Youth Summit Wednesday and Thursday, September 9-10 in Bismarck. James W. Anderson will facilitate a gathering of young Native people that parallels two days of the United Tribes Tribal Leader’s Summit at the Bismarck Event Center. Anderson is one of the top Native entrepreneurs in the country. He is a member of the Lac Courte Orielles Band of Ojibwe and the son of restauranteur “Famous Dave” Anderson. He is considered one of the leading authorities on peak performance and personal development. He co-created and founded the LifeSkills Center for Leadership and Business Leadership based in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, one of the nation’s top personal development training companies. His books include: “Yesterday’s Wisdom, Today’s Success,” and “Recipes for Success” and “Report Cards to Paychecks,” two books he co-authored with his father. He has twice been named one of the 40 outstanding Native Americans in Business under age 40 by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development. Anderson is a runner, proud husband and father who believes in giving back to the Native community. He has shared his principles for leadership and success with high school and college age youth throughout the U.S. and Canada. Anderson will facilitated the youth summit by leading discussions on a range of topics, including economic development in tribal communities, education, public safety, healthcare and culture. The youth summit will conclude with students presenting their thoughts and ideas to the Tribal Leader’s Summit in a position paper. For more information please contact Wes Long Feather, 701-255-3285 x 1721,

Powwow Youth Day is Friday, Sept. 11 at UTTC

Bismarck, ND – UTN – School classes and youth groups are invited to Youth Day at the United Tribes Technical College Powwow, beginning at 10 a.m. on Friday, September 11 on the college campus. Youth Day features tribal music and dance, cultural presentations and audience participation. Included will be exhibitions of youth and adult dancing and demonstrations of tribal drumming techniques. All school groups are invited as part of organized outings. There is no admission fee for students, teachers or escorts. Youth Day events take place east of the college administration building on Sisseton Road. Young people are invited to dance in the powwow arena following the 1 p.m. grand entry. Groups may bring lunch or purchase lunch from a variety of vendors in the powwow food court. Teachers are encouraged to register in advance by contacting coordinator Erik Cutler 701-221-1769,

Athletic events challenge and entertain during United Tribes Week

Bismarck, ND (UTN) – The 46th Annual United Tribes Technical College Powwow is clearly the main event of United Tribes Week in Bismarck September 8 to 13. But it isn’t the only activity that promises lively entertainment for thousands of guests and spectators who descend upon the capitol city. A slate of athletic events, featuring tribal and non-tribal athletes, are open to the public, either to compete-in or watch.

The “Home of the Champions” Powwow Basketball Tournament takes place Sept. 11-13 at the United Tribes gym for high school boys and girls. Eight teams in each division engage in pool play and a tournament. Trophies and plaques are awarded, along with a T-shirt. Contact Pete Conway 701-221-1362, and Kia Herbel 701-221-1365,

The Diamond Legends Softball Tournament is set for Sept. 11-13 at the Clem Kelly softball complex in south Bismarck. Three divisions of double-elimination action are on tap: All-Native teams for men and women; a mixed division with Native and non-Native men and women teams; and a men’s fast-pitch tourney. A special highlight is a home-run hitting contest for men and women. Contact Steve Shepherd 701-221-1537,, or visit

The United Tribes golf tournament, titled “Teeing Off for Academic Success,” is slated for a 12 noon start on Friday, September 11 at Apple Creek Country Club, east of Bismarck. This is a benefit event, open to all participants, with proceeds going to UTTC student scholarships. Limited to 144 golfers using the four-person scramble format. Prizes and awards at a concluding dinner. Contact Hunter Berg 701-221-1361,, or Sam Azure 701-221-1305,

The THUNDERBIRD Powwow Run, a 10K and 5K run/walk hosted for runners and walkers of all ages, gets underway at 8 a. m. on Saturday, Sept. 12. Races start and finish at the college’s Science and Technology Building on the south campus off University Drive at Burleigh Avenue. Also includes a kids fun run.

Healthy refreshments provided. Medals awarded. Everyone welcome!

Proceeds benefit United Tribes Strengthening Lifestyles programs. Register early to guarantee at T-shirt. Contact Brienna Schwab 701-255-3285 x 1367, On-site and online registration:

Federal funding for Sitting Bull College

Bismarck, ND – August 10, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced $220,000 in federal funding for Sitting Bull College in Fort Yates to increase academic services, and assist students with basic college requirements and successful completion of postsecondary education.

“North Dakota’s institutions of higher education should be equipped with resources that offer our students opportunities for academic development and improvement,” said Heitkamp. “These federal funds will play a role in making these opportunities more accessible while preparing students for successful futures.”

The funding is authorized by the U.S. Department of Education as part of the TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) Program.

Money prep for prospective parents

By Nathaniel Sillin


It costs parents an average of $245,340 to raise a child from birth to age 18.

That figure from the U.S. Agriculture Department is just one reason why prospective parents are advised to consider parallel financial planning for child-based expenses and retirement. The key is to start doing it as early as possible – in a December 2012 article in The New Republic, adults are starting families later than previous generations. In short, savings needs for childcare, college and retirement seem on a tighter collision course than ever.

For prospective couples or single parents, any discussion of family should begin with the pros and cons of starting a family in terms of personal, lifestyle and career success. In short, the question "Do we want kids?" should come before "Can we afford kids?"

Once family goals are settled, it's wise to evaluate where current finances stand. While many couples have a thorough money talk ( before they wed, it works for family planning, too. Couples and single parents will benefit from complete financial transparency before pregnancy, adoption proceedings or fertility treatment starts.

Utilize qualified financial and tax advice to fit specific circumstances. Consult trusted family and friends for referrals to qualified financial planning and tax experts. Also check current tax rules for how to handle and potentially deduct certain costs related to adoption or fertility treatments.

Research thoroughly and bookmark resources online. The IRS website ( continually updates its summary of tax issues for parents which can guide overall planning. New authors and bloggers emerge daily on virtually every aspect of parenting; friends, relatives and colleagues can also provide resources.

For prospective parents who are employed, it is a good idea to evaluate benefits well ahead of a pregnancy, fertilization procedures or adoption. Depending on specific circumstances, employees should review health and general benefits for routine and emergency medical coverage, medical leave policy and extras like child care benefits. Couples should compare their coverage to determine who has the best family coverage overall.

Start planning for childcare expenses as soon as possible. Full- or part-time childcare services for working parents can be surprisingly expensive and difficult to obtain depending on location. In 2015, the White House reported that the average cost of full-time care for an infant was about $10,000 a year, and a 2014 Boston Globe ( report noted state-by-state estimates that were significantly higher. For peace of mind and affordability, it is advisable to tackle the childcare issue as early as possible. Prospective parents might also speak with a qualified tax advisor about whether it is more advantageous to claim the Child and Dependent Care Credit on their taxes or pay childcare expenses from a Flexible Spending Account at work.

Loved ones can also lend financial assistance to a new family in a variety of ways. Affordable basics include general parenting advice, as-needed babysitting services and sharing coupons and hand-me-downs like clothing, toys and unneeded child-related equipment in good condition. For those willing to lend financial support, such options might include a Coverdell Education Savings Account, 529 college savings plan or a gift of cash or assets to the child subject to IRS rules. Also, anyone can directly pay medical expenses in full for someone they do not claim as a dependent under certain circumstances. If friends or family members offer financial help, encourage them to evaluate options with qualified financial and tax experts.

Finally, prospective parents should become dedicated bargain hunters and savers with an equal focus on handling childcare expenses and supporting retirement goals. Both financial goals are equally important.

Bottom line: It pays to plan early for a family. Evaluate your finances, reach out to friends and family for advice and get help from qualified experts if you need it.


Nathaniel Sillin directs Visa's financial education programs. To follow Practical Money Skills on Twitter:

Garden Corner

Submitted by Eric Hanssen

Browns Valley, Minnesota 56219


Potted chrysanthemums are the most popular year-round flowering gift plant. They are available in a wide range of colors and forms. Although chrysanthemums normally flower in November, newly developed methods encourage flowering all seasons of the year. Potted mums last several weeks to a month when given proper care in the home.

Care of the new plant:

Place the plant in a window where it gets bright light but no direct sun. Check each day to make sure that the soil is moist. Do not allow the plant to wilt, but do not keep the pot sitting in water. Keep the plant at temperatures between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit at night. Daytime temperatures may be 10 to 15 degrees higher. Reblooming chrysanthemums: Chrysanthemum varieties used for flowering potted plants are not usually suitable for gardens. However, if there is a desire to keep the plant, it may be rebloomed with proper attention. Florists often pot several plants together. Separate these plants after flowering and repot them individually. Use a 5- to 6-inch pot. Keep these plants well watered and at temperatures close to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. When new shoots appear, move them to full sun and give plenty of water. In summer, sink the pots outside in a sunny area where they can be given good care. Apply a complete liquid fertilizer about every two weeks. To develop large, bushy plants, pinch out the tip of each new shoot when it becomes about 5 inches long. Remove only the soft shoot tips. Do not pinch the plants after Aug. 15. Keep the plants outdoors as long as possible in fall. When light frost threatens, cover the plants or lift the pots and bring them indoors. They often can be returned outdoors during periods of mild fall weather. When cold, freezing temperatures persist, bring the plants indoors to stay. Place them in a sunny south window. Night temperatures around 60 degrees Fahrenheit are ideal. Day temperatures of 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit are best. Chrysanthemums flower only in response to short days (long nights). Until the color shows in the buds, plants must be kept where they will not be exposed to any light at night from a light fixture. Even dim light for short periods can disrupt flowering. When the buds begin to open, light at night will no longer effect them. Do not expect plants forced at home to be as perfect as those grown in a greenhouse. Hardy garden mums also grow in pots. These are suitable for outdoor planting. Set them out in a sunny, well drained location in spring when the ground is warm. To keep these plants low and bushy, pinch out shoots when they are about 4 to 5 inches long.

Discontinue pinching about mid-July.

Information from MU guide Number G 6511 “Care of Flowering Potted Plants” Published by MU Extension, University of Missouri-Columbia. Web site






CASE NO: D-15-507-332







Take notice that a hearing will be held at the above named Court, Agency Village, outside the city of Sisseton, County of Roberts, South Dakota, on the of 23rd  day of SEPTEMBER, 2015 at the hour of 3:00 P.M. or as soon thereafter as possible.

You are required to be at the hearing. Upon request, the Clerk will provide you with a copy of the

Petition describing the matter.

Dated this 21st day of August, 2015.



ATTEST: Eileen Pfeiffer, Clerk of Courts







CASE NO: D-15-212-035







Take notice that a hearing will be held at the above named Court, Agency Village, outside the city of Sisseton, County of Roberts, South Dakota, on the of 9th day of SEPTEMBER, 2015 at the hour of 2:00 P.M. or as soon thereafter as possible.

You are required to be at the hearing. Upon request, the Clerk will provide you with a copy of the Petition describing the matter.

Dated this 11th day of August, 2015.



ATTEST: Eileen Pfeiffer, Clerk of Courts







CASE: D-15-594-414 et seq



And concerning:

SHANNON KEOKE, Petitioner.          



NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Petitioner's request for a change of name from GABRIEL MARK LYONS to GABRIEL MARK KEOKE; TODD RENALDO LYONS JR., to TODD JACOB KEOKE; LeeRAY MITCHELL LYONS to LeeRay MITCHELL KEOKE shall be heard before the Honorable B.J. Jones, Judge of Tribal Court, in the Courtroom of the Sisseton Wahpeton Tribal Court at Agency Village, South Dakota at 3:30 P.M. on the 16th day of SEPTEMBER, 2015.

Dated this 13th day of August, 2015.


/s/ B.J. Jones,   CHIEF JUDGE




Trading Post ads

Garage Sale

Saturday, Sept. 5th. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. 425 South Main St., Peever, SD. Girls, Boys, Ladies, lots of clothes! Knick Knacks and many miscellaneous items. Some real treasures! Soup and Frybread Sale noon-3 p.m. Come enjoy the food and find something to take home!


Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate

Job Openings

The Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate is seeking to fill the following positions(s):

Motor Pool Attendant, Facilities

Classroom Aide (part-time), JOM

Tutor (part-time), JOM

Teacher, Early Head Start

Teacher Aide, Enemy Swim Head Start

Security Lead, Administration Building

Officer Manager/Assistant, Tribal Roads

Data Clerk, Elderly Affairs

Closing Date: September 11th 2015 @ 04:30 PM

Survey CAD Technician, GIS

GIS Analysts, GIS

Open Until Filled

All interested applicants may obtain application and job description information at the Human Resource Department, of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate or contact Arnold Williams at (605) 698-8238 or Denise Hill at (605) 698-8362. (Tribal preference will apply)


Tiospa Zina Tribal School

Employment Opportunities

2015-2016 School Year Vacancies:

Substitutes needed for custodial, kitchen, teaching, and transportation - starting at $10/hr, varies per position Qualifications: GED/High School Diploma (please contact the HR office for more information) Applications are accepted on an on-going basis

Vacancy: Bus Monitor ($13/hr) (Vacant Routes: Sisseton, Lake Traverse, Veblen) Qualifications: High School Diploma/GED+; currently has/willing to obtain CPR and First Aid certification Opening Date: November 21, 2014 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: High School English Teacher (Sign-on Bonus) Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a High School English Teacher Opening Date: April 30, 2015 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: High School Science Teacher (Sign-on Bonus) Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a High School Science Teacher Opening Date: April 30, 2015 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: Special Education Teacher (Primary and Secondary) (Sign-on Bonus) Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Special Education Teacher Preferred, will consider applicants with current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status per Secondary or Primary Education levels. Opening Date: April 30, 2015 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: Elementary Art Teacher (Sign-on Bonus) Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for an Elementary Art Teacher Opening Date: July 3, 2015 Closing Date: Open until filled

2015-2016 Coaching Vacancies:

For List of Coaching Positions Below: Proof of all SDHSAA coaching requirements at the time application is submitted. Requirements are to complete the following courses through the National Federation of High School Sports (NFHS): Fundamentals of Coaching, and First Aid and Safety for Coaches. Must also submit a letter of intent that answers the questions found on form Athletics Coaching Questionnaire. OPENING DATE: April 17, 2015 CLOSING DATE: Open until filled

Head Golf Coach Head Track Coach Assistant Girls Basketball Coach Junior High Volleyball Coach (*certifications not necessary for Junior High Volleyball Coach) Junior High Track Coach Assistant Track Coach Assistant Wrestling Coach

2015-2016 Extra-Curricular Assignment Vacancies:

For List of Extra-Curricular Assignments Below: Applicants are required to have a GED/High School Diploma, be able to fundraise if applicable, identify and recruit students if applicable, meet on a regular basis if applicable, and perform the duties per assignment description (contact Human Resources for description information). OPENING DATE: May 1, 2015 CLOSING DATE: Open until filled

AISES Advisor Destination Imagination Advisor Junior Class Advisor (2) Middle School Student Council Advisor Military Club Advisor Senior Class Advisor (3) Technology Mentor (K-2 and 3-5)

If interested please submit an application and Advisor Questionnaire to the Human Resources Department at Tiospa Zina Tribal School. Opening Date: September 11, 2014 Closing Date: Open until filled.

If you would like to apply to be a part of the TZ tiwahe you may pick up an application from the TZTS HR office located at #2 Tiospa Zina Dr. Agency Village, SD 57262. Applications may also be printed off the HR web page by downloading from links under employment forms to the left. Completed applications may be sent to PO Box 719, Agency Village, SD 57262. Faxed to: 605-698-7686. For further information call 605-698-3953 ext. 208. Indian Preference employer. At will employer. All applicants are subject to a Background Check and Pre-Employment Drug Test, pursuant to SWSB policy.


Enemy Swim Day School

After School Group Leaders

Excellent part-time opportunity! Do you enjoy working with children? We are looking for team players to join our afterschool program as a part-time Group Leader for the 2015-2016 school year. Spend time supervising K-8 grade students during after school hours in a fun and energetic environment, while promoting the importance of the arts, physical fitness, and academic achievement. Schedule: August 2015-May 2016. Monday-Thursday 12:30-5:30 pm and occasional scheduled evenings. Hourly wage. Indian preference will apply. For more information contact Rebecca Dargatz at 947-4605. Applications available on-line at or at the school.



Enemy Swim Day School

Facilities Assistant II

The Enemy Swim Day School has an immediate opening in the facilities department. The position requires a general knowledge of cleaning and maintaining classrooms and school grounds and physically able to perform the duties as required. This is a school year position, from 3pm to 11pm, Monday through Friday. The position includes health/vision insurance and retirement. Please visit for an application and job description. Call (605) 947-4605 or (888) 825-7738 and ask for Ed to inquire about the position. Applications are available at the school. Indian preference policies will be followed. Position is open until filled.



Dakota Magic Casino

Job Openings

Count Department Team Member (3 Full-Time or Part-Time) 3:00am to finish\

Human Resources Department Clerk (Full-Time or Part-Time) Day

Lounge Department Barback (Full-Time or Part-Time) Day

Marketing Department Supervisor (Full-Time or Part-Time) Cover

VIP Ambassador (Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Security Department Officer (6 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Slots Department Technician (Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Table Games Department Dealer (2 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Trainer/Pit Boss (Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Closing Date: September 4, 2015 at 4:00 p.m.

Starting Wage: D.O.E.

High School Diploma or GED required for most positions

Two identifications documents required upon hire

If interested please submit application to Human Resources Department, 16849 102nd Street SE, Hankinson ND 58041.For complete Job Description contact James Neconish 701-634-3000 ext. 2582 Indian Preference will apply / EEO. (Please Provide Tribal Enrollment). Must be licensable by the SWO Gaming Commission.


Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel

Job Openings

Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel is seeking to fill the following position(s):

LOUNGE: WAITSTAFF (1 FULL- TIME) GENERAL FUNCTION: Acts as host/hostess for all Lounge and casino patrons. REQUIREMENTS: High school diploma or G.E.D. equivalent. Must be able to stand and/or walk for prolonged periods of time. Able to reach, bend, lift, carry, stoop and wipe. Able to carry up to 20 lbs. on a continual basis. Able to lift 50-65 lbs. Basic math skills a must for money handling responsibilities. Excellent communication skills. Good organizational skills. Must obtain a Non Gaming License upon hire.

This position will close September 2nd, 2015 at 4pm.

Indian Preference will apply/EEO.

Contact the Human Resources Department for complete job descriptions at 1-800-658-4717 ext. 1652.

If interested please fill out an application and submit to: Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel, Human Resources Department, 16415 Sioux Conifer Road, Watertown, SD 57201.


akota Connection Casino

Job Openings

C-Store Department: Clerk/Cashier (1) full-time, rotating shifts, day, swing, graveyard, includes weekends & holidays. Excellent customer service skills; math skills essential; ability to operate necessary equipment; physical ability to lift moderate amounts of weight; previous experience working with money preferred; strong organizational skills managing various functions; dependable & available to work any & all shifts. Must be at least 21 years old & have a High School diploma or GED.

Sales & Marketing Department: Reel Deal Club Attendant (1) full-time, day, swing, includes weekends & holidays. Previous experience is preferred. Must be at least 21 years old, High School Diploma or GED, and must be able to obtain a Key gaming license upon hire.

Opening date: Thursday, August 27, 2015

Closing date: Wednesday, September 2, 2015 @ 4:00 p.m.

All positions will be exposed to noise & tobacco smoke

Indian preference will apply/EEO Employer.

Apply with the Human Resources Department, call or write for job description. Submit application to: Human Resources Department Dakota Connection Casino, 46102 SD Hwy 10, Sisseton, SD 57262.