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Volume 46 Issue No. 40

Anpetu Iyamni, October 7, 2015

Inside this Edition –

IHS awards funds for Meth, Suicide Prevention; SWO included with $150,000 award

SWO Mni Wiconi bringing attorney to speak about treaty law to Tribal community center Tuesday, October 13, 5-9 p.m.

Highlights of Chairman Renville’s Wopida

Tribal Law Enforcement planning restart of Reserve Officer Program

SWO Food Pantry has distribution day last Tuesday

Photos of last week’s Big Coulee horse races; more races Sunday, Oct. 11th

Wambdi Homecoming photo highlights by John Heminger

Chairman Renville leads delegation to State Capitol: Watch for report, photo highlights in next week’s Sota

Deadline for receipt of copy is Friday noon

IHS awards Meth, Suicide prevention initiative grants of $13.2 million

SWO to receive $150,000 grant

Previous funding supported SWO 7th Generation storytelling

Washington, DC – October 1, 2015 – The Indian Health Service, through its Office of Clinical and Preventive Services, Division of Behavioral Health, today made 117 MSPI funding awards totaling $13,237,000 to prevent methamphetamine use and suicide in American Indian and Alaska Native communities. Funding will go to Tribes, Tribal organizations, Urban Indian organizations, and IHS federal government programs. These awards will help increase access to health services and also build the capacity of American Indian and Alaska Native communities to provide prevention, intervention, and treatment services to American Indians and Alaska Natives who are at risk of suicide or methamphetamine use.

“The issues of suicide and methamphetamine use among American Indian and Alaska Native communities are at a critical stage,” said IHS Principal Deputy Director Robert G. McSwain. “The Indian Health Service remains dedicated to working closely with tribal entities to address, prevent and provide much needed resources. These awards allow IHS to increase the effectiveness of early prevention services, promote culturally sensitive programs and improve overall access to treatment and education.”

The awards announced today build on a recently completed, nationally coordinated pilot project. IHS previously funded 130 health programs in a six-year demonstration project through the IHS Methamphetamine and Suicide Prevention Initiative, which promotes culturally appropriate prevention and treatment approaches to methamphetamine use and suicide. In the first five years of the demonstration project, MSPI projects provided treatment services for over 9,000 individuals and trained more than 13,000 professionals and community members in suicide crisis response.

Some highlights of the past demonstration projects include:

Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate (SD) – Produced Youth Digital Storytelling series on Methamphetamine and Suicide Prevention. The project trained the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Youth Leaders, also known as the 7th Generation Oyate Voices, to reach out to their peers using these innovative social media campaigns.

Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (AK) – Coming Together to Reduce Suicide. Two Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Trainers (ASIST) sessions resulted in staff being trained in a Living Works evidence-based practice tool – safeTalk. Two ASIST Train-the-Trainer created 44 new trainers in the tribal health system to provide resources for suicide intervention. ASIST courses have been taught to 880 teachers, health aides, licensed and lay counselors, clergy, and other community members. A statewide Suicide Prevention Coalition supported an Alaska Suicide Prevention Summit that was hosted by the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and the State of Alaska.

Fresno American Indian Health Project (CA) – Suicide and Drug Abuse Prevention. The youth prevention component of the project utilizes the American Indian Life Skills Development curriculum, the Gathering of Native Americans (GONA) curriculum, and the White Bison Sons & Daughters of Tradition curriculum to deliver messages about the dangers of drugs and alcohol, risk indicators of suicide and focus on healthy cultural lifestyles as a way to cope with stress or peer pressure. Seventy youth from over 16 tribes participated in a five-day GONA event in the Sierra Mountains that produced outcomes in improvements in their feelings of hope, connectedness to the community and a stronger sense of identity.

IHS, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for approximately 2.2 million American Indians and Alaska Natives.

For more information on the IHS Office of Clinical and Preventive Services, Division of Behavioral Health visit

ACF and IHS award $21 million to support Tribal family violence victims and organizations

SWO receives grant to assist victims

Washington, DC – October 1, 2015 – October marks National Domestic Violence Prevention Month and today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and Indian Health Service (IHS) are announcing the award of nearly $21 million to support tribal domestic violence victims and organizations in American Indian and Alaska Native communities across the nation.

ACF funding announced today is being awarded under the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA), which is the primary federal funding source dedicated to providing immediate shelter and supportive services for victims of family violence, domestic violence, or dating violence and their dependents. Grants will be awarded to 136 tribes and tribal organizations serving 274 tribes. These funds will help to strengthen tribal responses to domestic violence and emphasize public awareness, advocacy, and policy, training, and technical assistance.

In 2014, local tribal domestic violence programs, funded by FVPSA, accomplished the following:

Served 30,860 victims of domestic violence and their children in their programs answered 86,203 calls for crisis counseling and requests for shelter and other services, and provided 5,274 education and prevention presentations to 89,441 adults and youth. IHS funding will be awarded to 56 projects to increase access to health services and build the capacity of American Indian and Alaska Native communities to provide prevention, intervention, and treatment services to American Indians and Alaska Natives who have experienced domestic or sexual violence. Funding will go to tribes, tribal organizations, urban Indian organizations, and IHS federal government programs.

These IHS grants are a new phase in the Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative (DVPI), which previously funded 65 health programs in a five-year demonstration project to expand outreach and increase awareness of domestic and sexual violence, and expand services to victims and communities. In the first four years of the demonstration project, DVPI projects provided over 50,000 crisis interventions, victim advocacy, and counseling encounters and made more than 38,000 referrals for domestic violence services.

“Tribal domestic violence programs provide a lifeline to tens of thousands of Native women, children and men each year,” said Commissioner on Children, Youth, and Families Rafael Lopez. “For the past three decades, the FVPSA Program has been an integral part of our nation’s response to domestic violence by providing funding, oversight, training, and guidance to emergency shelters, crisis hotlines, prevention programs, specialized resource centers, and a wide range of federal partners across the United States.”

“These new awards dramatically expand our efforts to provide community based, culturally appropriate services for domestic and sexual violence,” said IHS Principal Deputy Director Robert G. McSwain. “American Indian and Alaska Native communities have called on IHS for more support to prevent domestic and sexual violence. The IHS Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative funding represents a commitment to address these critical services.”

(Editor’s note: This grant funding – we do not yet know the amount – comes in addition to an IHS grant to SWO in the amount of $444,287 for victim assistance under the Department’s Tribal Victim Assistance Program.)

SWO Mni Wiconi bringing attorney to Lake Traverse Reservation

The SWO Mni Wiconi has announced it is bringing attorney Scott Michael Moore to the Lake Traverse Reservation.

Everyone interested in protecting SWO resources and how the treaties may be used today to protect your rights, please plan to come.

Scott will be available to speak and answer questions this Tuesday, October 13, at the Tribal community center, Agency Village, from 5:00-9:00 p.m.

A hearty Dakota community meal will be served.

Brief Biography

Scott Michael Moore, Attorney & Counselor at Law, was born July 3, 1958, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and has practiced international law for over 25 years. He earned a J.D. from Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, in 1989, and was called to the Bar in 1990, after earning an M.A. in Economics in 1985 and a dual major B.S. in Economics and English Literature in 1983, both from Eastern Michigan University.

Mr. Moore concentrated in International Law while in Law School and International Economics in College and Graduate School. Mr. Moore is licensed and admitted in the State Courts of New York and Michigan, over a dozen trial and appellate Federal Courts, has arbitrated in London, England, and has practiced before the United Nations Human Rights Commission in Geneva, Switzerland.

Mr. Moore is also a Licensed Private Pilot.

Attorney Moore is licensed, admitted, and in Good Standing in numerous U.S. Federal Courts, including:

The Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, DC

The US Court of International Trade in New York

The US Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in New York

The US Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit in Cincinnati, Ohio

The US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in San Francisco, California

The US Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver, Colorado

The US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit in Atlanta, Georgia

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York

The US District Court for the Eastern District of New York

The US District Court for the Western District of New York

The US District Court for the Northern District of New York

The US District Court for the Western District of Michigan

The US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

The US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma

International Arbitration and Indigenous Courts

Attorney Moore has arbitrated before the London Court of International Arbitration in London, England. He is also admitted to the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community Tribal Court and the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Court.

Continuing Education

Attorney Moore participates in continuing legal education seminars, including speaking before the Center for International Legal Studies in Salzburg, Austria. Attorney Moore has also lectured on international law and economic issues in American university settings. In 2013, Attorney Moore served as a Judge at the 18th annual Yale Mock Trial Invitational Tournament at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, where 42 college teams competed from across the United States. In February 2014, Attorney Moore judged at Yale's regional Mock Trial tournament where over 29 teams from around the region competed.

International Publications

Over the years, Attorney Moore has been interviewed by international publications, including International Business, World Trade, the National Law Journal, and has appeared on the Op-Ed page of The Wall Street Journal. 2013 marks the 20th Anniversary of the inclusion of Attorney Moore in Marquis Who's Who publications.

Chairman Renville hosts wopida

SWO Tribal Chairman Bruce Renville and his family hosted a wopida last Tuesday evening at the Tribal community center.

It was held in appreciation for support he received for his reinstatement to office.

Here are photo highlights of the gathering and meal.

USDA helps create jobs, increase economic opportunity

Pine Ridge, SD – September 29, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today awarded nearly $20 million through 385 grants to help support the start-up or expansion of rural small businesses.

“These grants will strengthen the economic fabric of our rural small towns and communities by providing capital to small and emerging businesses,” Vilsack said today during a visit to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

USDA is awarding the grants through the Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) program. Recipients may use the funds to provide technical assistance, training and job-creation activities.

The Value Added Agriculture Development Center, based in Pierre, S.D., is receiving a $49,500 grant to teach local businesses in Oglala Lakota County, which is on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, how to commercially process and successfully market buffalo meat.

In April 2015, the Obama Administration designated the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation one of eight new Promise Zones. Promise Zones are high-poverty communities where the federal government partners with local leaders to increase economic activity, improve educational opportunities, leverage private investment, reduce violent crime, enhance public health and address other community-identified priorities.

While Secretary Vilsack was in South Dakota, he highlighted USDA’s work to expand economic opportunities for Native Americans and rural residents throughout the state. For example, he announced that the Oglala Sioux Tribe is receiving a $1.85 million grant to construct a storage building and cell for a solid waste landfill.

Other RBDG recipients in South Dakota include:

· $99,995 awarded to Four Bands Community Fund, Inc. for technical assistance, training and education.

· $10,000 awarded to Brookings Economic Development Corporation for computer equipment and software.

· $96,500 awarded to Burke Business Promotion Corporation to set-up a revolving loan fund.

Funding of each award announced today is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the grant agreement.

USDA’s Rural Business Development Grant Program is one of several that support rural economic development. Since the start of the Obama administration, USDA’s Rural Business-Cooperative Service has helped 85,000 rural businesses.

President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President's leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities.

Horse racing comes to Big Coulee

Richard Kopas headed an effort to revive the horse nation locally on the Lake Traverse Reservation. He organized first in a series of horse races held last Saturday, September 26th, at Big Coulee.

There was a good lineup of horses, riders and spectators.

John Heminger was on hand to take photos so others might get a glimpse of the races.

See John’s pictures here.

A second round of racing was held at Big Coulee this past weekend, and a third is set for Sunday, October 11. Watch for signs at Big Coulee at noon on Sunday.

John is covering the action for Sota readers, so more pictures will be coming to these pages.

Funding for Mountain Plains Youth Services to combat Human Trafficking

Fargo, ND – October 2, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced more than $500,000 in federal funds for Mountain Plains Youth Services - which she specifically pushed for - to support case management and expand services for victims of human trafficking, as well as provide training for health care providers to support human trafficking victims.

“Victims of human trafficking have suffered in unimaginable ways and it’s up to all of us to work together to combat these horrific crimes,” said Heitkamp. “By partnering with community professionals, advocates and service providers, we can bring to light the shocking realities human trafficking victims face and train folks on what to look for and how to report what they see so we can prevent these crimes from happening in our own backyards. These federal funds will help make sure victims of human trafficking are given the tools they need to put their lives back together and help make sure North Dakotans are safe in their homes and communities.”

Meth-using pregnant mom sentenced to treatment instead of prison

By Seth Tupper

Rapid City Journal – October 3, 2015 – An unborn child was in court Friday, then went back to jail with its mother.

Another child of the same woman, that one apparently no more than a toddler and already victimized by her mother’s methamphetamine use during breastfeeding, is in foster care somewhere.

Years from now, all three members of the broken family might reflect on Friday’s sentencing at the Pennington County Courthouse in Rapid City as a pivotal moment.

It could be the day that 20-year-old Keyanna Bruguier began taking care of herself and her children.

Or it could be the beginning of a wasted opportunity.

Judge Jane Pfeifle allowed Bruguier to avoid prison if she completes the Full Circle residential drug-treatment program for young mothers and lives up to other sentencing conditions, including five years of probation. Bruguier will remain in the county jail until the treatment program has an open bed.

Pfeifle, herself a mother and grandmother, said in open court that she agonized over the case.

“I’m terrified that it’s going to happen again,” said Pfeifle, peering down at Bruguier from the raised judge's bench, “that you’re going to use again and harm that unborn child.”

Bruguier sat handcuffed at the defense table in a black-and-white-striped jail uniform with a pink undershirt poking past the short sleeves. She hesitated when Pfeifle gave her a chance to speak and then grew tearful.

“I do want to prove that I can do this for both of my kids,” Bruguier said.

Bruguier’s public defender, Jennifer Albertson, informed the court that Bruguier’s first child has apparently escaped lingering harm after initially showing ill effects from her mother’s meth-tainted breast milk. Bruguier committed the act in December and was indicted in June.

In August, Bruguier pleaded guilty to aggravated child abuse as part of a deal offered by Deputy State’s Attorney Josh Hendrickson, who dropped additional charges related to the meth.

If Bruguier fails to complete the treatment program or otherwise violates the conditions of her sentence, Pfeifle could impose the five years in prison that she held back Friday.

“It’s up to you,” Pfeifle told Bruguier. “You need to save your own life so you can save your unborn child’s life.”

ND Tribal Colleges receive Workforce Development funding

Bismarck, ND – UTN – The North Dakota Department of Commerce has authorized another round of workforce development grants for North Dakota’s tribal colleges.

United Tribes Technical College will receive $356,909 from the program that was first authorized in 2013.

The grants are for training support in degree or certificate programs that qualify students to earn highly recruited jobs in the state.

The grant to UTTC will support the college’s popular programs in welding, commercial truck driving and heavy equipment operation.

“We’re grateful for the state support,” said Russ McDonald, United Tribes president. “This assists us in further developing these training programs to connect students to employment opportunities in the state. It also helps us strengthen our partnerships with North Dakota Job Service, area employers and workforce organizations.”

Three million dollars in funding was authorized for the current round by the 2015 North Dakota Legislature. The program also serves to provide assistance to students to establish new businesses in North Dakota that will employ North Dakotans.

The Department of Commerce administers the grants through an application process. Recipients are required to report back on several factors including expenditures, number of students assisted, graduation rates, new or improved training or other programs leading to a certificate or degree, job placement rates, rate of students assisted who seek further educational opportunities, and the number of jobs or businesses created. “Tribal Colleges continue to serve a critical role across our state in providing education and training needed to fulfill their career goals,” said Commerce Commissioner Al Anderson. “Tribal college grants increase the colleges’ ability to prepare students for our growing statewide economy.”

The TCU grants were announced by the state agency in September. For more info visit:

DOI transfers additional $10 million to Cobell Education Scholarship fund

Washington, DC – The Department of the Interior announced that an additional $10 million has been transferred to the Cobell Education Scholarship Fund (the Fund), bringing the total amount contributed so far to nearly $30 million. Funded in part by the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations (Buy-Back Program), and authorized by the Cobell Settlement, the Fund is designed to be a permanent endowment which provides financial assistance through scholarships to American Indian and Alaska Native students wishing to pursue post-secondary and graduate education and training.

“I am thrilled that the first Cobell scholarships have been awarded. Graduating from college and law school was life changing for me, and wouldn't have been possible without financial support,” said Interior Solicitor Hilary Tompkins, a member of the Navajo Nation, who negotiated the Cobell settlement for the Interior Department. “The Cobell scholarship program is key to advancing self-determination by opening doors to the next generation of leaders in Indian Country.”

The Fund, administered by the American Indian Graduate Center (AIGC), will disburse approximately $2 million in funds in its first round of awards over the next several months. Scholarship recipients represent more than 80 tribal nations who will be attending more than 175 different academic institutions. The Cobell Board of Trustees is responsible for the oversight and supervision of the activities of the fund’s administering organization.

The Buy-Back Program was created to implement the land consolidation component of the Cobell settlement, which provided $1.9 billion to purchase fractionated interests in trust or restricted land from willing landowners. Consolidated interests are transferred to tribal government ownership for uses benefiting the reservation community and tribal members.

Interior makes quarterly transfers to the scholarship fund – up to a total of $60 million – as a result of Land Buy-Back Program sales. The amount contributed is based on a formula required under the terms of the Cobell settlement that sets aside funding contributions based on the value of the fractionated interests sold.

“AIGC has been working diligently over the last few months to receive, process and distribute the Cobell Education Scholarship Fund,” said Joan Currier, Interim Executive Director of the AIGC. “We received more than 2,500 applications from talented students, and we were able to award $2 million in scholarships to more than 340 undergraduate and graduate students for 2015/2016. This truly is an exciting opportunity for Indian students. We are working with the Cobell Board of Trustees and are reviewing the application and selection process as we look towards the next academic year. We encourage all students to reapply for 2016/2017, starting in January 2016, at”

“We are delighted with the significant transfer to the Cobell Scholarship Fund. The latest distribution aids our mission of carrying out the vision of Elouise Cobell to enhance educational opportunities for American Indians and Alaskan Native students,” said Alex Pearl, Chairman of the Cobell Board of Trustees. “With the beginning of the new school year and the initial distribution of funds to recipients, we are aware now more than ever of the quality, capabilities, and talents of our tribal youth. Indian Country is not immune from the national concern about rising student debt and access to education. Our Board understands the financial aid needs in Indian Country are enormous. We are committed to creating a uniquely tuned scholarship program attentive to the needs and issues of Native students. The Cobell Board is grateful for the leadership demonstrated by Solicitor Hilary Tompkins and looks forward to continue working with her and the Department of the Interior in this unique shared effort to minimize the barriers faced by Native students in accomplishing their educational goals.”

Providing Native youth with increased access to higher education opportunities supports the Obama Administration’s Generation Indigenous (Gen-I) initiative to remove barriers to Native youth’s success.

Since 2013, the Buy-Back Program has paid nearly $685 million to individual landowners and restored the equivalent of more than 1.4 million acres of land to tribal governments.

Landowners can contact the Trust Beneficiary Call Center at 888-678-6836 or visit their local Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians (OST) to update their contact information, ask questions about their land or purchase offers, and learn about financial planning resources.

More information and detailed frequently asked questions are available at to help individuals make informed decisions about their land.

Food Pantry distribution at Agency Village

The SWO Food Pantry held a distribution of food last Tuesday, September 29th.

Besides a variety of commodities, lots of fresh tomatoes were donated by the SWO Extension Program.

From Ella Robertson: “We donated 124 pounds of tomatoes to the Food Pantry to distribute along with potatoes, bread, apples and other items received from National Relief Charities.”

She added “Great job Geno!”

Tom Wilson, KXSW-FM announcer, was on present to publicize the event and give live updates throughout the day.

Here are photos taken of the giveaway.

Looking for childhood friends

Harry Roberts, of Watertown, SD, is looking for twin sisters who may be from the SWO Tribe. They were childhood friends of Harry and his sister in the late 1940s, early 50s.

Penny and Polly are their names.

They came to live with Harry’s grandparents Harry and Hazel Roberts in South Shore, SD, placed there by a “foster child agency.”

Here is Harry’s statement:

From South Shore … “My grandparents then went to work for the county and moved to Watertown and operated what was then the county poor farm.

“Penny, Polly, myself and my sister Diane went to Roosevelt School together in Watertown.”

”Around 1952 my grandmother passed away and the agency came and took the girls … and that was the last time I ever saw them.”

“My mother, who now is 95, believes they were placed in another foster home, went to school in Sisseton.”

He continues, hoping “with this information and along with the photo someone will remember or know them and we can see each other again.”

Here is his contact information:

Harry E. Ave. SW

Watertown, SD 57201



Tribes win nearly $1 billion from Feds

Tanya H. Lee

Indian Country Today - September 18, 2015 - The federal government on September 17 announced a historic agreement worth almost $1 billion that would end 25 years of litigation between the U.S. and tribes over the payment of contract support costs incurred by tribal entities under the terms of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975.

The U.S. Departments of Justice and Interior have filed the proposed settlement in federal district court in New Mexico. If approved, funds could be distributed to tribes within the next several months.

Benjamin C. Mizer, principal deputy assistant attorney general in the Justice Department, said the settlement was a compromise reached after years of complex negotiations following the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2012 decision in Salazar v. Ramah Navajo Chapter.

Mizer described it as a settlement both sides can be proud of. It provides a $940 million lump sum payment to the 645 plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit to settle claims for contract support costs for the years 1994-2013.

Kevin K. Washburn, assistant secretary – Indian Affairs, explained that under ISDEAA, the federal government signs intergovernmental contracts with the tribes that allow them to run Bureau of Indian Affairs programs for the benefit of tribal members, such as law enforcement, forest management, fire suppression, road maintenance, housing and federal education.

The federal government has been contracting with tribes for these services for four decades, but Congress has consistently failed to authorize enough money to cover the full costs of the contracts.

The direct cost of hiring personnel to provide services has been covered, but support costs, which are costs related to running the programs, such as insurance, workmen’s compensation, janitorial services, computer hardware and software—in fact, everything except payments for direct services—have not been fully covered by Congressional appropriations. “If the tribes don’t get the money for these costs, they must take it from the programs or other sources,” said Washburn.

In 1990, a class-action lawsuit was brought to force the federal government to cover those costs. The government maintained that it could pay the tribes whatever amount it wanted to, whenever it wanted to and it could decide what amount it would pay after the tribes had performed the services the contract called for. This was the only context in which federal contracts could be treated in such a cavalier manner, essentially rendering them non-contracts.

And that is what the Supreme Court decided was unacceptable in 2012. Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Anthony Kennedy sided with the tribes based just on the fact that ordinary government contracts cannot work that way. The court ruled that the federal government was liable for contract support costs whether or not Congress appropriated enough money to cover them. It was a major victory for the tribes.

This settlement addresses the question of how much tribes will receive to reimburse them for contract support costs they incurred, but were not compensated for, during the two decades from 1994 to 2013.

Mizer explained that the settlement “provides a fair and equitable system for distributing shares of the award to each of the 645 class member tribes and tribal contractors. Generally, each tribal contractor that submits a claim will receive a share based on the amount of contract support costs it has incurred over the last 20 years. There is also a minimum payment for each year that a self-determination contract existed with the tribe in order to insure that no tribe is excluded from the benefit of this agreement.”

Jessica Kershaw, a spokeswoman for the Interior Department, told ICTMN that this settlement applies only to contract support services for BIA programs and does not pertain to Indian Health Service programs. “Those claims are being litigated separately,” Kershaw said.”

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell noted that this settlement is indicative of the “tremendous strides the Obama administration has made in its commitment to Indian country.” She cited the resolution of nearly 100 trust cases for a total of $2.5 billion, the restoration of tribal homelands through land-into-trust actions and the land buy-back program funded by the Cobell settlement, the initiative to put the education of tribal children back into the hands of the tribes, and the new opportunities for higher education created by the Cobell Scholarship Fund.

Washburn said in a statement, “Today’s proposed settlement, together with President Obama’s request for full, mandatory funding of tribal contract support costs in the future, removes one of the significant obstacles to tribal self-determination and self-governance. Tribes can now be confident that the federal government will pay sufficient costs to allow them to be successful in running federal programs.”

Fight to keep education services on Indian reservations

Motion filed to enforce settlement agreement against BIE

By Ernestine Chasing Hawk

Native Sun News Editor

Rapid City, SD – September 29, 2015 – Several tribes and tribal schools in the Dakotas have filed a federal court motion to enforce a 2007 settlement agreement with the Bureau of Indian Education. They are all original plaintiffs in the prior lawsuit.

“Sadly, the BIE seems dedicated to removing most if not all of the reservation level support services for tribal schools, while building upper level bureaucracy,” said Charles Abourezk, one of the attorneys for plaintiffs. “The appropriations to the Bureau of Indian Education for support for tribal grant and contract schools are being disproportionately depleted by the highly paid, upper level bureaucratic positions,” alleges a motion filed on behalf of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe and several tribal schools against the BIE.

The suit asks BIE to uphold the settlement agreement and final judgment in the 2007 Yankton Sioux Tribe vs. Dirk Kempthorne injunction. The lawsuit was originally brought to stop a restructuring which would have led to an abandonment of reservation-level services for tribal schools, and to a violation of the Federal Government’s trust responsibilities.

See the Native Sun News for full article.

Investigation faults former BIE officials over handling of contract - December 8, 2014 - The former head of the Bureau of Indian Education and his top aide steered a contract to a company run by one of their friends, according to an investigation released last week.

The Inspector General at the Interior Department said former BIE director Keith Moore and his chief of staff Brian Drapeaux appear to have violated federal ethics regulations in the awarding of an $840,000 contract to PerGroup of South Dakota. Drapeaux worked for the firm as its vice president up until the same month Moore hired him to come to Washington, D.C.

Normally, a federal official can't take action on matters that might benefit a prior employee during a year-long "cooling-off" period. But Drapeaux advised an evaluation panel for the contract and helped write the statement of work upon his arrival to DC, according to the report.

"We explained to Drapeaux that his previous employment and his new role at BIE not only created concerns about an actual conflict of interest, but also created appearance issues," the report stated.

Moore, who acknowledged his friendship with PerGroup's president, knew of the potential conflict, according to the report. In fact, he asked the BIA to wait to issue the contract until Drapeaux’s "cooling-off" period" ended, the OIG said.

"During our investigation, we found that Drapeaux had worked for PerGroup within 12 months of his BIE employment," the report stated. "We also found that this situation created a conflict of interest once Drapeaux became closely involved in the procurement process because PerGroup competed for and received the contract award."

A contract specialist at the BIE who was aware of the conflict ended up canceling the contract, according to the OIG. The employee, who was not named in the report, then tried to get Moore and Drapeaux to sign a "procurement integrity certification" to prevent the PerGroup from participating in the future, either as a contractor or a subcontractor.

But Moore and Drapeaux refused to sign the certification, according to the report, and the specialist was removed from handling the contract. The matter was then assigned to another employee who acknowledged he was not as experienced as the specialist, the OIG said.

"These senior BIE officials appear to have acted in violation of federal ethics regulations governing impartiality and the use of public office for private gain," the report stated. "Finally, other BIE officials who knew of these conflicts of interest chose to ignore them during the procurement process."

In the end, PerGroup ended up as a subcontractor when the contract was issued to All Native Inc., a subsidiary of Ho-Chunk Inc., the economic development corporation of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska. Tribal executives said they were told by PerGroup that Drapeaux wasn't involved in the process.

"We asked about the conflict and [Drapeaux] wasn't truthful to us," Lance Morgan, the CEO of Ho-Chunk Inc., told Indianz.Com. Ho-Chunk Inc owns Indianz.Com but the website does not participate in any of the company's business contracts.

Moore is a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. He left the BIE in June 2012 to work for the South Dakota Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Drapeaux is a member of the Yankton Sioux Tribe. After Moore's departure, he served as acting director at the BIE but he now works at the Grand Canyon National Park as a deputy superintendent.

The president of PerGroup is a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. "The PerGroup president acknowledged to investigators that his ties to Moore and Drapeaux might suggest to outsiders that PerGroup was favored for the contract," the OIG report stated.

The OIG referred the matter to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia but the office declined to prosecute.

(Editor's note: Recent failed audits and a murder-suicide in western South Dakota have brought this story back into the headlines. There needs to be a real investigation and halt to misuse of funding that is supposed to be used for educating tribal youth.)

Thune receives award for work with Impact Aid program

Washington, DC – September 30, 2015 – U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) received the Friend of National Association of Federally Impacted Schools (NAFIS) Award at this year’s NAFIS fall conference for his leadership and support of the Impact Aid program. The federal Impact Aid program provides payments from the federal government to local school districts to make up for local taxes lost on account of federal land, such as military bases, Indian reservations, or federal grasslands, within their districts.

“I’m honored to receive this award,” said Thune. “NAFIS has worked with members of Congress to ensure that South Dakota schools, as well as other federally impacted school districts across the nation, get the certainty they need from the federal government so they can give children the quality education they deserve. I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Senate, on both sides of the aisle, to fight for these schools that are affected by Impact Aid.”

Since 2012, Thune has championed various provisions to help boost the Impact Aid program, including ending the highly subjective “highest and best” formula for districts with federal lands, which attempted to determine the “real value” of federal property, creating a highly inefficient payment formula that was subject to local interpretation by assessors on the value of taxable property adjacent to eligible federal property. Thune also led an effort to require the U.S. Department of Education to provide payments owed to districts on a more accelerated timeline, providing districts with the ability to better budget for revenues and provide stronger academic and co-curricular programs for students.

In March 2015, Thune introduced the Local Taxpayer Relief Act, which would reauthorize the Impact Aid program and make permanent the provision simplifying the payment calculation process for federal property. This bill was the origin of language included in the Senate-passed Every Child Achieves Act.

DNC Chair statement on Jeb Bush comments on Washington Football Team Name

Washington, D.C. – September 30, 2015 - DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz released the following statement today after Jeb Bush said, “I don’t think it should change,” in response to a question about the Washington D.C. football team’s name, a term many Native Americans find offensive:

“Jeb Bush’s support of the Washington football team’s name and mascot is extremely insulting to Native American people and is one of many reasons he will not earn the Native American vote. The team’s name is a racial slur that perpetuates negative stereotypes of Native American people, and reduces proud cultures to an insulting caricature.

“Over the past few weeks, Jeb Bush has shown a shocking disregard for America’s diverse society. First, during an exchange about immigration from Latin America, he slurred American children born in this country to immigrants. Then, he clarified that the offensive term he used was, ‘frankly, more related to Asian people.’ Last week, he insulted African-Americans, implying that they only voted for Democrats because of ‘free stuff,' and also said America should not have a multicultural society. So much for the Republican Party’s plan to appeal to minorities.”

Whetstone Valley Electric Cooperative selects new GM

Whetstone Valley Electric Cooperative is pleased to announce that Dave Page has been selected to become the next General Manager of the Cooperative. Page has been employed at Whetstone for 19 years serving in many capacities, including network administration, purchasing, plant accounting and most recently as Information Technology Manager/Staff Assistant. A native of Henry, SD, and a graduate of Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown, SD, Page worked for 12 years in the telecommunications industry before coming to Whetstone.

Bill Tostenson, Whetstone's board president, stated "We were very pleased to have a number of high quality candidates for this important position. We are confident that Dave is right choice to carry on the legacy of service to our Cooperative members and our partnership with the communities that we serve."

Page will begin his new duties on January 1, 2016, succeeding Steve Ahles, who will complete a 30 year career at Whetstone, serving as general manager since 1995.

Headquartered in Milbank, Whetstone Valley Electric Cooperative, serves 2,700 members at 3,400 service locations in Grant and Roberts Counties. With electric distribution assets of $26 million, the cooperative's 22 employees provide electricity distribution of nearly 100 million kilo-watt hours each year. Whetstone is also engaged in electrical contracting and provides HVAC sales and service, security and life-safety monitoring.

Editorials –

Sota guest editorial –

Meth Addiction

By Barb Kirk

Old Agency District Member

October 1, 2015

Meth Addiction is a problem worldwide.

The Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate has taken a valuable hard stance up holding a drug free environment. The greatest concern is meth, and it affects all in the community.

The ingredients in meth are battery acid, drain cleaner, lantern fluid and antifreeze.

This is what you are shooting up your arm to get happy, and feel great. Meth can and does cause changes in the brain in areas of: learning; depression; delusions and hallucinations; obsessive behavior; uncontrollable movement; tolerance, high; memory; aggression; addiction.

The Oyate is concerned and we must take proactive strategies to help make change in the community. We want the Oyate to be productive and healthy.

I know several of our Oyate members pray daily for those suffering. I am a member of a group called Sober Indianz 36 thousand strong praying for each other daily. Young people helping each other recover from meth addiction.

I have started posting a prayer on our radio station KXSW asking Wakan Tanka to change the hearts and open the eyes of the ones suffering.

The Oyate wants the best for the next generations to come. We will do what we can to help.

We must become proactive concerning this drug. We have the awareness, we know the consequences if you are busted for selling meth; prison; and banishment is of consequence.

We have been praying targeting meth; naming it and praying against it.

What's our next proactive move?

Brief editorial comments from the editor’s desk –

On and Off the Lake Traverse Reservation

Please read Barb’s guest editorial on this page.

And respond.

What can each of us do?

“What’s our next proactive move?”


We need all the help we can muster!

We are grateful for grant awards to help with victim assistance and, most recently, an IHS grant to support Meth and Suicide Prevention on the Lake Traverse Reservation.

Thank you for those of Tribal leadership who are taking initiative to capture grants that will help.

Federal funding is helpful, of course, but the crises going on and escalating can only be adequately met when the Oyate themselves decide they’ve had enough of matters going in the wrong direction and wake up to be personally engaged.

Again, please read what Barb has to say.


Capt. Gary Gaikowski has announced plans to restart the Tribal Police Reserve Officer Program.

If you are interested in helping assist your Tribal officers by joining this program, please contact Gary at (605) 698-7661.

We’ve all become more aware recently of the Meth epidemic and related criminal activity on our Reservation.

If you are willing to help and able to volunteer, then this Reserve Officer training may be for you.


What a great turnout there’s been the past two weekends at Big Coulee!

It’s a revival of the horse culture.

Please see John Heminger’s photos from the first set of races held Saturday, September 26th. Next week we plan to share pictures he snapped this past weekend.

And note that the next in this series of horse races will take place, again at Big Coulee (watch for the signs) on Sunday, October 11th.

Come and ride, or come and watch and cheer your family and friends as they mount up and ride!


We encourage everyone interested in protecting resources of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, and how the treaties can be used in international and federal court turn out this Tuesday evening. That’s when the SWO Mni Wiconi is bringing attorney Scott Michael Moore to a public meeting with Oyate.

Everyone is invited.

Scott will be available to speak and answer questions about law from 5:00 until 9:00 p.m. at the Tribal community center, Agency Village, SD

A community meal will be served.

So come, find out about options for protecting rights of yourselves and generations to come.


AIM has announced it will hold a follow-up Longest Walk in 2016.

The walk has focused on environmental justice in past years.

This time it will focus on the scourge of drug addiction.

Watch for more information about the walk and about how you can provide support.


Elder's Meditation:

"Spiritual Values are an Attitude." -- Leonard George, Chief Councilor

Attitude is a direction which we follow. If you have a positive attitude, it means you will lean towards a positive direction. If you have a negative attitude, it means you will lean away from the Spirit. Therefore, if we lean toward spiritual values, then our actions will become significant and important. If we lean away from spiritual values, our actions will become insignificant or unimportant. For example, if we value love, we will lean towards it; we will prefer to express and embrace it.

Great Spirit, teach me the significance of spiritual values.


Words to consider (or, perhaps not!):

The more things change, the more they remain... insane. Michael Fry and T. Lewis, Over the Hedge, 05-09-04

The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself. Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900)

Truth is beautiful, without doubt; but so are lies. [Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 - 1882)

The universe may have a purpose, but nothing we know suggests that, if so, this purpose has any similarity to ours. Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970)

If you can find something everyone agrees on, it's wrong. ]Mo Udall

If a thing isn't worth saying, you sing it. Pierre Beaumarchais (1732 - 1799)

Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions. G. K. Chesterton (1874 - 1936)

Life being what it is, one dreams of revenge. Paul Gauguin (1848 - 1903)


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 –

Notice of Kevin Feather’s passing

Kevin Dale Feather was born in Sisseton on October 27, 1955 to Fannie Flute Feather and Clifford Feather. He died unexpectedly on September 28, 2015 in Pueblo CO.

He leaves behind a son, Michael and daughter, Ashley of Las Vegas, NV and sisters, Vernice Feather of Sisseton SD, Ruan Feather Murphy of Tacoma WA and Denise Flute Keeble of Round Lake IL.

He was preceded in death by his parents, a sister, Phyllis Feather Johnson, a brother, Robert Feather.

Funeral services were held in Pueblo Colorado.

Services held for Rick Buckanaga

Funeral service for Richard (Rick) Buckanaga, 65, of Sisseton, SD was held Saturday morning , October 3, 2015 at the St. Kateri Tekakwitha Hall, Sisseton, SD with Spiritual Leader Danny Seaboy and Drum Group Wahpekute.

Pallbearers were Cheo Smith, Chris Strom, Wambdi Clairmont, Bob LaFromboise, Floyd Beaudreau, and Alan LaBelle. Honorary Pallbearers were Lakota Clairmont, Harry Buckanaga Jr., Brian LaBelle, William Smith, Duane LaBelle, Dennis LaBelle, Elijah Daniels, Ralph LaFromboise, and Patrick Greene.

Interment is at the St. Matthews Catholic Cemetery, Veblen, SD.

An all-night wake service was held Friday at the St. Kateri Tekakwitha Hall.

The Cahill Funeral Chapel of Sisseton, SD was in charge of arrangements.

Richard (more fondly referred to as Rick by all who knew him) Warren Buckanaga was born on January 21, 1950 to Celine Dorothy LaFromboise Buckanaga and Harry Buckanaga, Sr. in St. Paul, MN. His Indian name is Cetan Ohoda Hokida.

After the loss of his father, he was raised by his mother and additionally benefitted from the loving guidance of his grandmother Lucy LaBelle and other grandmothers, aunts and uncles and other extended family members.

He attended Tekakwitha Mission School for several years before the family purchased a home in Sisseton. There he attended St. Peter's Catholic School and the Sisseton Public Schools until his freshman year in high school. Because he was such an exceptional student, usually performing at the top of his class, he was recruited by A Better Chance (ABC), an educational search organization that recruited the top students from communities of color nationwide to attend private schools across the country. Rick attended Wilbraham Academy in Wilbraham, MA for the remainder of his high school years, and graduated from there in 1972.

He was recruited by Dartmouth College and there completed his freshman and sophomore years. He was anxious to apply his education and experience in the real world and decided to take time off from Dartmouth for several years. He moved to Denver, CO and became active in the American Indian community there. He developed a skill for fundraising and development and was instrumental in starting Denver's first Indian Health Board. He also garnered revenue for child welfare programming and many other social services programs.

During this period in Denver, he started a family with Carmen Clairmont. They have two children - Lakota Clairmont (41) and Tanksi Clairmont (34). He has five grandchildren - Keya and Wambdi Clairmont, and Tate and Wakinyela Bear, and his youngest grandson, Omani Clairmont. In addition, he has many other grandchildren from his nieces and nephews in the Sisseton community and in Minneapolis, including Elijah Daniels, Alayah, Solomon and Isaac Goodsell, Gia Strom, and Latecia, Javonte, Owinteno, and Catan Buckanaga.

After nearly 30 years in Denver, Rick moved home to Sisseton. During the past 12 years, Rick began a jewelry and small sculpture business (Tribal Fusion) selling many items to the Dakota Nation Art Store, the Sisseton casinos and to numerous individual buyers. He began attending Sisseton Wahpeton College in 2009 and graduated with an A.A. degree in Computer Sciences in 2012.

Rick is survived by his mother Celine Buckanaga of Sisseton, SD; two children Lakota Clairmont and Tanksi Clairmont both of Denver, CO; brothers Harry Buckanaga Jr., of Wahpeton, ND and Brian LaBelle of Sisseton, SD; sisters Nancy Smith of Minneapolis, MN and Zola Greene of Sisseton, SD; grandchildren Keya, Wambdi, Tate, Wakinyela, and Omani; nieces Aida Strom, Anpao Buckanaga, Hopsti Buckanaga, Michelle Buckanaga, Deanna LaBelle, Edie LaBelle, Shara LaBelle and Brianna LaBelle; nephews Cheo Smith, Daniel LaBelle, and Cody Gunderson.

He was preceded in death by his father Harry Buckanaga Sr.; beloved nephew Michael Richard Buckanaga; uncles Willard LaFromboise, Buddy LaBelle, Joe LaFromboise and Francis Crawford; aunts Marie Crawford and Martina Westerman. He will be dearly missed for his kindness, generosity, empathy and great love for his entire family. Ake waciya kekte ate, micinksi, tibdo, misun, deksi, and unkana.

For Rick's obituary and on-line registry please visit

Ta Kola Ota (Darrell Standing Elk)

A Beloved Leader Walks Quietly Down the Holy Road

By Patti Jo King

Ta Kola Ota (Darrell Dale Standing Elk) was born in White River, South Dakota on July 16, 1934, one of twelve children of Joshua Standing Elk and Blanch Janereau. He was an enrolled member of the Sicangu Lakota Oyate. Of his eleven siblings, brothers Virgil, LaVern, Sidney, Verdell, Alvin, Alvern, and Velmer Standing Elk, and sisters Alvina Standing Elk, Vivian Standing Elk-Brave, Violet Standing Elk-Medicine Bear, and Esther Standing Elk-Moves Camp, Darrell is survived by only two, Violet and Alvena, both of White River. He leaves behind his wife of fourty-four years, Carole Eastman-Standing Elk, and six of his children; Lisa Standing Elk-Mesteth of Pine Ridge, South Dakota; Kelli Eastman Many Lightnings, of Hankinsin, North Dakota; Kristin Eastman-Limon, of Hankinsin, North Dakota; Wasula Eastman- Baqueiro, of Pasadena, California; Ta Cangleska Wakan Standing Elk, of Davis, California; and Loren Lee White - Standing Elk, of Sisseton, South Dakota. A seventh child, Kevin Eastman, preceeded him in death. Darrell also leaves behind seventeen grandchildren, and fourteen great-grandchildren.

American Indian Movement (AIM) founder Dennis Banks issued a poignant statement upon hearing the news of Darrell's passing.

"I did not know Darrell in his younger years. I'm not exactly sure when we first met, but I do know it was like I had known him all my life. He was not loud or boistrous. He was always very calm and deliberate, and very savvy about issues that we faced. He was extremely knowledgeable of Lakota spiritual life. He spoke the Lakota language and knew the translation to correctly transfer the deep meaning of the Lakota ways. When U.S. Law was searching to jail AIM leaders, Darrell stepped up to the plate and took me in. He was at that moment on the right side of history. Every now and then, Native DNA produces a Crazy Horse, a Geronimo, a Chief Joseph, or a Darrell Standing Elk. That's how I feel about my old friend Darrell. I shall miss him deeply."

Life at Rosebud and His Travels Beyond:

After the Plains Wars of the 1870s, the United States confiscated 7.7 million acres of the Great Sioux Nation's sacred Black Hills and created several small reservations. The Sicangu Lakota were sent to live on the Rosebud Reservation which includes all of Todd County, South Dakota, as well as communities and lands in four adjacent counties. Widespread unemployment, substandard living conditions, illness, and the lack of opportunities devastated Rosebud families. Many extended families pooled their meager resources to provide for basic living needs, and many others were forced to leave the reservation to seek work.

As teenagers, Darrell and four friends hitchhiked off the reservation and hopped a freight train to Nebraska in search of a better life. In Nebraska, they attempted to enlist in the Marines, and all but one who was sent to the Army, were accepted. After his time in military service, in 1952 Darrell applied to and was accepted by the Urban Indian Relocation Program, a federal program that moved over 100,000 Indians from rural reservations to city centers between 1950 and 1970. He was sent to Alameda, California, where he attended job training as a mechanic, eventually working for the Ford Motor Company and then at various construction jobs around the San Francisco Bay Area. In San Jose in the early 1960s, Darrell, who had become a skilled guitarist, enjoyed jamming with his neighbor and friend Carlos Santana in his spare time. Darrell also attended San Jose City College and later, the University of California at Davis, earning a bachelor of science degree in 1975 with a major in the new field of Native American Studies.

A Strong Spiritual Tradition:

As a direct descendent of renowned Sioux spiritual leaders, Darrell was raised with traditional Lakota religious values and had experience as a sweat lodge leader from an early age. With this upbringing, it was natural for him to carry those spiritual traditions with him to the Bay Area urban Indian community. While in Davis, California in 1971, Darrell began teaching Lakota language classes at the newly established DQ University, one of the first tribal colleges in the nation. He also developed a strict criteria for Native cultural programs at DQ, organizing and leading weekly sweatlodge ceremonies according to authentic Lakota traditions.

In 1976, with the approval of traditional Lakota spiritual leaders, Frank Kills Enemy, Henry Crow Dog, and Shelby White Bear, as well as AIM leader Dennis Banks, who had been granted political asylum by California Governor Jerry Brown, Darrell ran the first Lakota sundance ceremonies at DQ University. At that time, AIM emphasizing the need for the younger generation to return to the religious traditions of their Native ancestors in order to protect and preserve culture and sovereignty into the future, organized the "Longest Walk" in 1978, a 3,200 mile spiritual walk in support of tribal sovereignty and religious freedom. Darrell's friend Dennis Banks could not leave California due to his political status, but Darrell himself made the journey, walking with spiritual leaders from many tribes and nations. The Walk culminated at the Washington Monument, where the walkers smoked the Lakota sacred pipe they had carried with them throughout the journey. Although President Jimmy Carter refused to meet with the Walk's representatives, the following week, Congress passed the American Indian Religious Freedom Act.

Traditional Ceremonies for Community Healing:

Working out of the San Francisco Indian Center in the early 1980s, Darrell led sweat lodge ceremonies on a weekly basis. As his reputation for assisting those with alcohol and drug problems grew, he was approached by Martin Waukazoo, director of Native American Health Center, and soon,, he was running sweats as a traditional alcohol and drug counselor under an Indian Health Service grant out of the Oakland IHS Health Clinic.

Eventually, upon the advice of Crow Dog, White Bear, and other religious advisors, Darrell moved the Davis sundance back home to Wanblee, South Dakota, working with his nephew and wicasa wakan Richard Moves Camp. As a highly respected community spiritual leader, Darrell was held in high esteem as an honest, generous, kind, and wise leader. Indian people of many tribes sought him out for friendship, advice, and spiritual guidance.

Declaring War on Cultural Exploitation:

During the 1980s, however, commercial exploitation of American Indian spiritual practices, especially the sacred ways of the Lakota people, had reached epidemic proportions with the emergence of the New Age movement, particularly in California, and Darrell became deeply concerned over the debasement of Native religion. Together with his friend John LaVelle, a Santee Sioux tribal member attending Law school at the University of California at Berkeley (now a professor at the University of New Mexico School of Law), and Helene Hagen, a non-Indian supporter of Native causes, Darrell founded Center for the Support and Protection of Indian Religions and Indigenous Traditions (Center for the SPIRIT) in the late 1980s, a non-profit organization whose mission included raising public awareness of various threats to the survival of Native religious practices. During the 1990s, Center for the SPIRIT with Darrell as the organization's president, worked tirelessly to bring the critical issue of spiritual exploitation to the forefront of public concern in both urban and reservation communities, formulating a "Declaration of War Against Exploiters of Lakota Spirituality" - signed by Darrell as well as Oglala Lakota spiritual leader Wilmer Stampede Mesteth and Kul Wicasa Lakota community leader Phyllis Swift Hawk. The Declaration was adopted unanimously at the "1993 Lakota Summit V", an international gathering of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota nations, tribes, and bands in the United States and Canada. The Declaration became an international call to action to end New Age cultural exploitation of Indian spirituality. A version of the Declaration was later adopted unanimously by resolution at an annual meeting of the Grand Governing Council of the American Indian Movement.

Due to his expertise as a Native speaker and as a representative of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Darrell had an opportunity to work with the Lakota Language Consortium as a consultant on dictionaries and text books. That involvement, and his lifelong friendship with musician/ actor/ AIM activist Floyd "Red Crow" Westerman, led Darrell to his role as a cultural consultant for the film industry. As such, he worked as actor Vigo Mortenson's Lakota language coach on the film "Hildalgo" (2004), and with Steven Seagal as an extra in "On Deadly Ground" (1994). He also worked on the TV movies "Lakota Woman" (1994) and "Crazy Horse" (1996).

Despite serious health issues in his later years, Darrell continued to lead weekly sweatlodge ceremonies in the Bay Area. He also continued his active role at the annual sundance ceremonies at both Wanblee with Richard Moves Camp, and with Wilmer Mesteth at Red Shirt Table on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. This past July, he participated in the Red Shirt Table sundance as usual, afterwards, driving the 1300 miles back to Davis, California for the last time.

Going Home:

On Saturday, September 26, 2015, a memorial service, attended by many friends and family members was held for Darrell at the Intertribal Friendship House in Oakland, California. Those who shared their thoughts remembered Darrell as a quiet and kind man, but one who always stood for Native rights and cultural integrity.

"Darrell was a spiritual man who said "'Being Indian is a spiritual thing,'" " said Antonio Gonzales, AIM-West director and longtime friend. "He was known around the Bay Area and in the surrounding areas of Davis and Sacramento. He helped revive cultures and re-awaken spiritual beliefs and languages. He would always offer himself to teach and guide the ways of the sweat lodge to anyone who wanted to come back to the circle of life. He was a bridge to so many people, and valuable to those who could not have gotten through their lives without his sharing of knowledge. Darrell was always there for the people who needed him most. May the Great Spirit World receive our friend, brother, and warrior with a pure heart."

Darrell began his final journey home on Thursday, October 1 with a wake service in the multipurpose room at Sinte Gleska University in Mission, South Dakota. He received a traditional burial at St. Ignatius Church, White River, South Dakota, on Friday morning, October 2. Officiating at his memorial and interment were Leonard Crow Dog, Richard Moves Camp, and Roy Stone.

His pallbearers included his nephews, Bernard Moves Camp and Harold Medicine Bear, and his grandsons, Caske Limon, Kelly Standing Elk, Hoksila Mesteth, Dakota Mesteth, as well as dozens of honorary pallbearers as well.

His son-in, Wilmer Mesteth, who preceded him in death just months before, is almost certainly waiting to greet him on the Holy Road.

otice 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.

Hillary Clinton announces opposition to KXL, Native Leaders respond

SWO Dustina Gill comments on statement

At a town hall meeting in Iowa two weeks ago, Hillary Clinton finally gave her position on the Keystone XL pipeline, telling the crowd, “I oppose it. I oppose it because I don't think it's in the best interest of what we need to do to combat climate change.”

Clinton’s statement is being met with skepticism and guarded celebration by grassroots Native American leaders of the Oceti Sakowin, also known as the Great Sioux Nation. The pipeline has not received consent from the Oceti Sakowin tribal nations of the Great Plains to cross their treaty lands, it does not have legally permitted routes in South Dakota or Nebraska, and it has faced a growing opposition nationwide. Now, with Clinton joining fellow Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders in opposition to this tar sands pipeline, all focus now lies on President Obama to deliver the final blow and reject the Keystone XL pipeline.

Gay Kingman, Executive Director of Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association Coalition of Large Tribes: "Tribal leaders of the Great Plains have long stood in opposition to the Keystone XL Pipeline. We were disappointed when Hillary Clinton took a stand supporting KXL as Secretary of State but we are happy to hear of her changed position now opposing the tar sands pipeline. Hillary Clinton’s new stance reflects the clear facts that this pipeline is all risk with no rewards for the people of this land. Now, it is time for President Obama to end this debate once and for all and reject KXL."

Dallas Goldtooth, of Indigenous Environmental Network: “It is great to see Hillary Clinton finally make the right choice on Keystone XL. Her position switch on KXL is a direct testament to the sustained action and movement of our frontline Indigenous communities along this pipeline route. She once stood against Oceti Sakowin people on this issue, now she sings a different tune. We, along with our allies, made this happen. Now it is President Obama's turn see the writing on the wall and reject this dirty tar sands pipeline, once and for all.”

Oyate Wahacanka Woecun (Shield the People), Rosebud Sioux Tribe: “We recognize the importance of Hillary Clinton renouncing and opposing the Keystone XL pipeline. KXL will negatively impact our cultural, historical and burial sites; it will be a major environmental, public health and safety hazard, and most importantly it will be a threat to the non-negotiable rights of our women and children. President Obama, time to act, reject Keystone XL.”

Faith Spotted Eagle, of Ihanktonwan Treaty Council spokesperson: “Hillary's switched opinion on KXL is a plus for our climate change efforts, however, given her previous support of this pipeline, our celebratory reaction as Oceti Sakowin people remains guarded. Hillary is like sand cherries to us, moving in whatever direction the strongest wind is blowing . She knows how to harvest votes. It’s ok though, we from the Oceti Sakowin appreciate her new position on Keystone XL. Mr. Obama, reject the pipeline now.”

Waniyetuopi Bud Lone Eagle, Sr., Pte Ospaye Headsman: “Hillary Clinton's announcement that she opposes the Uncekila Sapa (Black Serpent), aka the Keystone XL pipeline, is another coup counted on TransCanada, and other environmental terrorist corporations. However, only when the Presidential permit is denied and the project scrapped in it's entirety can we claim victory over the Uncekila Sapa. When that day comes I would personally invite our allies to a victory celebration in my home, Bridger, South Dakota, a frontline community in this fight against KXL.”

Byron Buffalo, Pt'e Ospaye Headsman: “Hillary Clinton, your stance opposing Keystone XL pipeline is encouraging yet is met with skepticism. The Indigenous people of America stand strong against the Black Snake known as KXL. We implore you to not only voice your opposition but to actively seek ways to stop the climate destroying corporations that believe continued mutilation of our earth is the only way progress can be made. All we have this one earth, we must ALL protect it, for we, ALL living beings, are truly ALL related. Mitakuye Oyasin.”

Greg Grey Cloud, of Wica Agli: “Hillary Clinton is just now realizing that foreign tar sands crude, by way of the Keystone XL pipeline, is NOT for the American people. However, I see yet another political ploy taken as a wrongful gain to run for president. I reserve my celebration for the moment President Obama takes action and rejects the permit for KXL.”

Dustina Gill, Community Advocate, Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota: "Hillary Clinton’s recent stance against KXL attests to the threat this pipeline poses and highlights the efforts of numerous organizations and citizens of the Oceti Sakowin who have dedicated themselves to this fight against the tar sand pipeline. Those efforts have been critical in making this a national issue and getting presidential candidates on board with the climate movement. Now I too, like thousands of others, anxiously await the President’s decision to reject this pipeline."

Native leaders remark on Shell & Arctic Drilling announcement

September 29, 2015 – Royal Dutch Shell has announced its plans to abandon its attempts to drill for oil off Alaska’s northwest coast, citing disappointing results from exploratory wells. Native American leaders who have been campaigning against the Shell project and other extreme energy developments share their thoughts on the announcement made yesterday:

Faith Gemmill, Executive Director of Resisting Environmental Destruction on Indigenous Lands (REDOIL), based in Alaska, remarks: “This is an amazing result of the fight to defend the Arctic. Insane energy policy plans, such as Shell’s risky Arctic Drilling endeavors which promote more extraction of fossil fuels at a time of climate crisis gave birth to a peoples movement to stand up for the Earth and her finite resources. Today I honor all that took on this fight and stood with us. The fight to protect the Arctic is far from over, but this is definitely a victory for the people, especially the Inupiat who have been on the forefront of protecting the Arctic ecosystem, which sustains their ancestral whaling way of life. We hope that Royal Dutch Shell and other companies realize Arctic Drilling should be totally scrapped since the risks outweigh the benefits.”

Kandi Mossett, Native Energy & Climate Campaign Organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network shares: “Today we celebrate a victory as Shell abandons its drilling operations in the Chukchi Sea; due in part to the courageous people on the ground pushing back against the corporation in the fight to protect all those in the seas who can’t speak for themselves. However, our Indigenous communities remain ever vigilant knowing the big picture fight is not over as we are mindful of our continued struggle to protect the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). We will not truly celebrate a major victory until Shell and other oil corporations drop their plans for Arctic drilling altogether, and we vow not to rest until that occurs.”

Justin Finkbonner, Community Organizer & Skipper of the Lummi Youth Canoe Family states: “The Lummi Youth Canoe Family is more than happy to hear about the news this morning to find out that Royal Dutch Shell Oil Company is removing from the Arctic, “for the time being”. With this news though, I’m afraid that Shell will go to Congress to seek funding from the taxpayers to pursue oil at a later date. We were honored to have shared paddles with the organized efforts from other environmental organizations such as leaders and fishermen from the Northern Slope territories, Chairwoman Cecile Hanson of the Duwamish Tribe, former Vice Chair Deborah Parker of Tulalip Tribes, The Back Bone Campaign, Greenpeace, Climate Solutions and even Seattle City Council Members Kshama Savant to paddle during the Shell NO Protest in Seattle.”

Allison Akootchook Warden, Iñupiaq Artist and Community Organizer remarks: “The Iñupiaq People have been in the Arctic for thousands and thousands of years, living off the land and the sea. Today, Shell pulled out of our waters, hopefully never to return. This is a huge victory for our People and our traditional ways of life. It is too risky for Shell to be in our waters, where the bowhead whale thrives and takes care of us. I am so thankful for all the work of all the people who fought Shell drilling in our fragile and beautiful environment. The Iñupiaq culture will continue to thrive as we live off of the land and ocean as our Ancestors have for thousands of years. Today is a big victory for the Iñupiaq People and my heart is overjoyed to hear about Shell’s decision to pull out. Yay hey hey!”

You have the right to choose

By Harry 0'

"For I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies, says the Lord God.

Therefor eturn and live”. Ezak. 18:32 1 Timothy 2:3-4 IlPeter 3:9

Dear Lord God our heavenly Father, if only all could see,

The blessed Gift you offered up for all humanity;

Now we've been forgiven for all the sins that we have done,

Though the death of Jesus Christ your only begotten son.

Today through gifts may all who are reading truly see,

That all good and perfect gifts some from you and not from me;

And may they see in receiving you they will join you someday,

And as always my Lord through the name of Jesus we pray.

To the Dakotahs who know me and you I've not met yet,

Though l walk a new path now I'm still part Dakotah yet;

Which is why my heart grieves for our Dakotah youth today,

Who are being taught the Jesus is just the white man's way,

His word tells us He loves all red and yellow black and white,

And in fact He tells us that we are all precious in His sight;

All the blessings we've received have come through Jesus you see,

The gifts I am using today He has also given me.

Our ancestors worship the creator too long ago,

But they may not have heard that what God did for all mankind though;

So they made flesh offerings to Him thinking must be done,

No knowing God offered up His only begotten Son.

So those flesh offerings need not be done any more you 5M

For Christ offered more than flesh but His own life on that tree;

Always test the spirits to see if they are faults or true,

For through signs and line wonders they could deceive you

I Car. 10:20, Gal. 1:6-9, II Thes. 2:9-12, II Timothy 3-13, I John 4:1-6

To all races whom God does love in case you haven't heard,

May I teach a few more truths from Gods holy word;

There is a generation who will never have to die,

The Christians who are alive when Christ returns in the sky.

There will be two deaths but we only need to go through one,

If we truly live for Christ Gods only begotten son;

The first death is physical which we will all go through some day,

Unless He returns soon then His church will just lie away.

The second death is spiritual where there is no return,

When all you have rejected Christ will externally burn;

God desires none to go there but some have made that choice,

Those who have been lead astray by listening to the wrong voice.

I could do nothing without the gifts that He has given me,

Now that He is saved and from that sinful life has set me free;

No I am not yet perfected but I am pressing on towards that goal,

And along the way 1 will seek to rescue another's soul.

I've been told I cannot save anyone which I know is true,

But since Christ gave me these gifts I will do the best that I can do;

And if I am mocked or laughed at I will continue anyway,

For perhaps even just one will turn back to Christ someday.

Now once and awhile I wouldn't mind some feedback from you,

At least I would know then I am starting to get through;

To those who once knew me my sight has slowly slipped away,

But if the Lord wills l will see you on that glorious day.

For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing?

Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ in His coming.

A women's role should be in the… where?

By Richard P. Holm MD

I believe that equality of the sexes, both in the workplace and at home, should make our society and our families stronger and happier. Although our U.S. society is not quite there, we are a heck of a lot closer than when I was growing up. This is not to say men and women should have the same roles, but I believe the different perspective each provides is of equal value. Say it again, men and women having equal value should not require having the same role.

I was interested to hear about a recent study indicating combat units with a mixture of men and women were not as effective as combat units with men alone. I know enough about how study results can be skewed to show the answer the researcher wants, but still it didn't surprise me that combat units with women might be less effective as killing units.

My Mother and Father were quite different in their roles both in our community and in our family, and yet as far as I was concerned, were of equal value in what they each contributed. My Mom's role was as the peace-keeper to compromise when a balance was needed, while my Dad's role was more rigid, standing for a principle without conciliation. Mom was emotionally apparent, while Dad was more likely to cover his feelings. Dad could open a stuck jar lid, while Mom was not nearly as physically strong. Although she could be brought to an emotional conflict quickly, my Mother was also quick to forgive, while my Dad was slow to anger, yet once incensed, he could hold a grudge. They were different, each had their weak and strong points, and yet together, in my eyes, they were awesome.

I remember how Mom's attitude changed after she was hired at the DeSmet News and her regular income lifted the financial burdens about which our family struggled. It changed her role from staying at home raising children, to equal partner in supporting the finances of the family. It was interesting to see how their arguments lessened and her painting and creative expressive talent blossomed after that.

At least in my family, equality of the sexes should not mean equal roles. Hurrah! for the difference.

Animal-human infection connection

By Richard P. Holm MD

One early morning, I was walking toward the back door on my way to work when suddenly there was a big bat flying around the breakfast room, swooping around like in a Dracula movie. As it came near me, I reactively swung at it and like hitting a Nerf ball, it was thrown across the room landing on the kitchen floor a little stunned. I closed all doors to the rest of the house, locked open the exit outside, washed my hands thoroughly, and shooed the creature out into the early morning darkness.

Bats are a marvel of evolutionary diversity with something like 47 different species living just in the U.S and important by their contribution to our ecosystem. Experts believe that these winged animals first developed powered flight and later the ability to chirp and recognize their echo and thus their location. This capacity for radar-like-echolocation became so refined as to allow flying at night or in a cave without light. Bats eat their weight in bugs every night, carry seeds to reforest depleted wooded areas, and pollinate plants.

But one percent of these little flying mammals carry a deadly virus called Rabies. Stricken with Rabies, the victim, whether bat, dog, skunk, cat, or human, turns confused, agitated, aggressive, and infectious. Although not like a movie Zombie, which has returned from the dead, those bitten by one infected with this age-old condition, left untreated will certainly die.

So, after striking down the bat, did I need to receive Rabies Post Exposure Prophylaxis (RPEP) to protect me from coming down with Rabies? This involves four doses of Rabies vaccine over 14 days, and one injection of active immune globulin. Checking out the last 15 cases over five years in the U.S., nine were from bat exposure, four from dogs, one from a fox, and one unknown. This left me concerned.

The CDC recommendations advise having RPEP if there has been a bite or an exposure to saliva into eyes, nose, mouth, or open wound. This was unlikely in my case and official recommendations say hand-washing is extremely important.

So I did not seek out RPEP as I did not receive a bite, the bat was acting normally, and I washed my hands well after touching the bat, although I did have a few restless and on edge nights.

Still, don’t let me bite you if I start acting like a Zombie.


To hear more from Dr. Holm, visit his website, 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. CT, 6 p.m. MT, and streams live at

Heart symptoms guide us

By Richard P. Holm MD

When should one worry that he or she might be having a heart problem?

Unfortunately, heart symptoms can be all over the board, and sometimes there are no indications for trouble until very late in the game. On top of this, classic heart symptoms can be due to just esophageal spasm or musculo-skeletal strain, and not heart disease at all. That said, there are clues for heart trouble that signal us to seek help.

Taking into consideration the age, gender, size, life-style and situation of the individual in question can be helpful. In general there is a higher incidence of heart problems in people with a smoking history, positive family history, increasing age, and male gender. But heart problems can occur in anyone; so never cover-up or ignore symptoms especially knowing that heart disease in some people, especially diabetics and women, can present with unusual or very minimal symptoms.

Hypertensive and over-weight snorers should have an inexpensive night-time oxygen test to see if a full sleep study is needed. Sleep apnea is a dangerous and important cardiac risk-factor, and I believe way more worthy of attention than cholesterol. If suspicious, talk to your doctor, since discovering sleep apnea could add years to your life.

A middle aged or older person having a heavy sensation in the chest, neck, jaw, shoulder or arm that comes with exertion and is relieved with rest, could be a sign for blockage of coronary arteries. Called angina pectoris, this alone may not be dangerous unless coming on with a decrease in exercise. Still, angina means see your doctor. If these symptoms come on suddenly and do not go away with rest, then you have a very urgent problem, so call 911.

Heart weakness, also called congestive heart failure, or CHF, can be caused by heart-valve disease, long standing high blood pressure, chronic alcohol use, certain viral infections, and more. The most common symptom from CHF is shortness of breath, but almost every illness, especially lung disease can cause this too.

Heart rhythm problems are sneaky and many of us, including me, have a benign sporadic fluttering feeling in the chest that is not dangerous and means nothing, but is worth discussing with your care provider. Runs of heart rate in the 150 range, or rates so fast or slow as to cause weakness or passing out. If this happens to you, go the emergency room.

As complex as all these warning signs may seem, the most important way to diagnose heart disease starts with paying attention to symptoms.


To hear more from Dr. Holm, visit his website, 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. CT, 6 p.m. MT, and streams live at

Ripple Effect –

Save Water, Save Money: It’s that easy

Have you ever wondered what exactly you are doing with the water you are consuming? Some of the most important uses for water are used at home. This usage is referred to as domestic water use. Domestic water use is water used for indoor and outdoor household purposes— all the things you do at home: drinking, preparing food, bathing, washing clothes and dishes, brushing your teeth, watering the yard and garden, and even washing the dog. Water is a very important part of our everyday lives. But do you really understand how much you use?

The average American family of 4 consumes 300 gallons of water per day at home. As water is a vital necessity to life, we cannot eliminate use completely. However, we can make some simple, easy choices to conserve water that will reduce waste and consumption significantly. Water conservation at home not only helps reduce consumption but also will reduce your water bill and reduce water pollution. offers some easy tips to reduce water consumption at home. Here are a few of them:

1. Check faucets and pipes for leaks

A small drip from a worn faucet washer can waste 20 gallons of water per day. Larger leaks can waste hundreds of gallons.

2. Check your toilets for leaks

Put a little food coloring in your toilet tank. If, without flushing, the color begins to appear in the bowl within 30 minutes, you have a leak that should be repaired immediately.

3. Install water-saving shower heads and low-flow faucet aerators

"Low-flow" means it uses less than 2.5 gallons per minute. Also, all household faucets should be fit with aerators. This single best home water conservation method is also the cheapest!

For new installations, consider buying "low flush" toilets, which use 1 to 2 gallons per flush instead of the usual 3 to 5 gallons.

4. Take shorter showers.

One way to cut down on water use is to turn off the shower after soaping up, then turn it back on to rinse. A four-minute shower uses approximately 20 to 40 gallons of water.

5. Turn off the water after you wet your toothbrush

There is no need to keep the water running while brushing your teeth. Just wet your brush and fill a glass for mouth rinsing.

6. Use your dishwasher and clothes washer for only full loads

Automatic dishwashers and clothes washers should be fully loaded for optimum water conservation. Most makers of dishwashing soap recommend not pre-rinsing dishes which is a big water savings.


7. When washing dishes by hand, don't leave the water running for rinsing If your have a double-basin, fill one with soapy water and one with rinse water. If you have a single-basin sink, gather washed dishes in a dish rack and rinse them with a spray device or a panful of hot water. Dual-swivel aerators are available to make this easier. If using a dishwasher, there is usually no need to pre-rinse the dishes.

8. Keep a bottle of drinking water in the fridge.

Running tap water to cool it off for drinking water is wasteful. Store drinking water in the fridge in a safe drinking bottle

By following some of these simple tips to conserve water, you too can contribute to the overall health of our rivers and lakes. Make sure that you watch your water bill for reductions in cost and usage. Then celebrate your commitment by sharing your success story with others.

For the complete list of indoor and outdoor tips recommended to reduce the consumption of water inside and outside your home please visit for more information.

If you are interested in learning more about how these changes affect the amount of water you consume daily, please visit This site provides a daily water use calculator.


The RRBC is a grassroots organization that is a chartered not-for-profit corporation under the provisions of Manitoba, North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota law. Our offices in Fargo, ND and Winnipeg, MB can be reached at 701-356-3183 and 204-982-7254, or you can check out our website at

Ripple Effect –

Let the Spring flooding predictions begin…

As we inch closer and closer to freezing, we also inch closer to the potential for spring flooding. This isn’t new for the Red River Basin and it is known that Mother Nature tends to have a mind of her own when revealing indicators of spring flooding or drought.

In the spring of 2015, we cruised through winter relatively unscathed which led us to believe that a drought was looming. The ground was brown and had little snow cover in many areas of the basin. Precipitation for 2015 had been below average for all months except for May when we received over 7 inches of rain fell in some parts of the Red River basin helping to alleviate the drought conditions. Essentially one large rainfall can change the game.

Precipitation is a critical indicator in the flood prediction game. Here is a quick and simple glimpse at some of the basic indicators to predicting a spring flood:

- Fall Precipitation - The amount of rain or snow that falls in an area during the fall months (September, October and November).

- - Winter Snowpack - The amount of snow that falls in an area throughout the winter.

- Spring Snowmelt - When the snow melts in the spring (March, April and May).

- Spring Temperature - How warm is it throughout the spring.

- Spring Precipitation The amount of rain or snow that falls in an area during the spring If you think you have what it takes to be a flood predictor, you can play the indicator game to predict future water flows by visiting the Project WET website using the follow link:

There is definitely more science involved in predicting spring flooding. There are many people that work together to gather and collect date throughout the Red River Basin to predict exactly what size flood we are to prepare for. These numbers usually start with snow water equivalent measurements.

The National Weather Service defines snow water equivalent as the depth of water that would cover the ground if the snow cover was in a liquid state. Our river forecasting models use this value , along with temperature and sunshine information, to estimate the amount of snowmelt entering the river channels. The actual number is very rarely field checked, but rather estimated from the total snow depth, observed liquid equivalent precipitation, i.e. how much precipitation fell if it was entirely in the form of rain, and the amount of snowmelt.

If you would like to learn how to take your own snowpack measurements where you live or work you will need to purchase the following items before the snow flies:

- Snow Measuring Stick – The numbers should be easy to read and marked in measures of tenths of an inch.

- Rain Gauge (for snow water equivalent) – There should be no cracks or leaks in either the measuring tube or the overflow can. Check for leaks by filling both the outer cylinder and inner tube with water.

For specific instructions on how to measure snowpack, please visit the National Weather Service website for more information:


The RRBC is a grassroots organization that is a chartered not-for-profit corporation under the provisions of Manitoba, North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota law. Our offices in Fargo, ND and Winnipeg, MB can be reached at 701-356-3183 and 204-982-7254, or you can check out our website at

Funding to protect children from Internet crimes

Washington, DC – September 21, 2015 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced a total of more than $350,000 in federal funding for the North Dakota Attorney General’s office to protect children from Internet crimes by reducing the backlog of DNA cases and database samples.

“As North Dakota’s population and economy continues to grow, it’s critical that we make sure our law enforcement has the resources it needs to keep North Dakotans safe in their homes and communities,” said Heitkamp. “These federal funds will protect our children against sex offenders and sexual exploitation on the internet and provide the tools and resources law enforcement officers need to develop effective responses to these crimes and work to reduce the backlog of DNA cases so that North Dakota remains a safe place to live, work, and raise a family.”

The following federal funds are awarded to the North Dakota Attorney General’s Office and will be used for the following programs:

· Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) - $232,065. These federal funds will support the North Dakota ICAC Task Force as it provides training and equipment to affiliated agencies to establish and expand computer forensic investigations regionally, maintains the program with parole and probation officers who manage sex offender caseloads and conduct home compliance visits and recruit local prosecutors to streamline the current backlog of ICAC cases. In addition, the ND ICAC Task Force will enable local, state, and federal law enforcement to continue their efforts to protect children from becoming victims, educate children about the Internet, and apprehend and prosecute those responsible for Internet crimes.

· DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program - $150,000. These federal funds will be used to reduce the backlog of forensic biology/DNA cases work requests and database samples through adequate access to DNA profiling kits and supplies, to provide continuing education to DNA analysts, and to complete an external audit of the DNA unit.

In April 2015, Heitkamp rode along with the U.S. Marshal on the Fort Berthold Reservation, as law enforcement checked in on sex offenders to witness North Dakota’s crime challenges firsthand. Heitkamp has also met with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in June 2015 and others to discuss human trafficking, and successfully pushed a bipartisan bill fighting human trafficking through the Senate in April.

Through Heitkamp’s Strong & Safe Communities Initiative, she is working to put a focus on emerging safety challenges in North Dakota, including crime reduction and public safety.

These funds are authorized by the U.S. Department of Justice.


Youth, school activities highlights –

Education watch on the Lake Traverse Reservation

TZ hosts Groton for volleyball

The Wambdi team hosted Groton last Tuesday, September 29th for volleyball matches. It turned out pretty much one-sided, with the visiting team winning both contests.

Game scores:

            1          2          3

Groton 25        25        29

TZ       7          15        8

Jennifer Rondelle led in attacks, 8-12, 3 kills; and blocks, 2 solo.

Kailani Seaboy was credited with 13-20, 4 assists.

And Kylee Deutsch 12-16 digs.

JV game scores:

            1          2

Groton 25        25

TZ       12        15                   

C team scores:

            1          2

Groton 25        25

TZ       17        20

Noem’s Office accepting applications for Spring interns

Washington, DC – Representative Kristi Noem is accepting applications for fall internships in her Washington, D.C., office, as well as in her offices in Sioux Falls, Rapid City and Watertown.

Student interns in Representative Noem’s office will assist staff with various constituent service and communications projects, as well as help with legislative research. Both South Dakota and Washington, D.C., internships provide students with first-hand knowledge of the legislative process and the countless other functions of a congressional office.

College students who are interested in interning in any of Representative Noem’s offices should submit a resume and cover letter to by November 6, 2015.

Rep. Noem is a member of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over tax, trade, and economic growth policies. For more information, contact Christiana Frazee at 202-225-2801.

Building a Fraud-Free Family

By Nathaniel Sillin

A generation ago, most families didn't think about financial fraud. Today, it can come in many forms – over the phone, through the mail and increasingly, online. It's an equal opportunity crime that affects consumers of all ages.

For the 15th straight year, the Federal Trade Commission tapped identity theft as the number one source of consumer complaints in its 2014 Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book ( released in February. The agency also noted a "large increase" in so-called "imposter" scams – phone calls and emails from thieves purporting to represent the government as a way to steal data and money from unsuspecting adults.

Young people – particularly students – may be the fastest-growing group of fraud targets. Due to their dependence and sometimes unwitting use of computers and mobile devices, young people may be the greatest potential victims of financial fraud, according to a 2015 study ( by Javelin Strategy & Research. More than 64 percent of respondents said they were not "very concerned" about identity fraud, but were far more likely to find out they were fraud victims long after the damage occurred, such as through a call from a debt collector or a rejection letter from a lender.

Most consumers under the age of 18 shouldn't have a credit record at all. But as digital thieves become more sophisticated and federal agencies become occasionally vulnerable to hackers, critical privacy data like Social Security numbers – which many parents obtain for their children in infancy to save or invest money or buy insurance on their behalf – could be at risk years before a child ever opens a bank account or applies for a loan.

For all of these reasons, it may be time to think about a family fraud plan. Here are some steps to consider.

Check the accuracy of all family credit data. Parents should begin by checking their own credit reports ( to make sure creditor data and loan balances are accurate and no inaccuracies or unfamiliar lenders have crept into their information. Once clear, adult children can make sure senior relatives are taking similar steps. As for minors, the three major credit agencies – TransUnion, Equifax and Experian – have their own website guidelines for confirming and evaluating a minor's credit data. Make sure mailboxes are safe from thieves and any document with an account number or identifying data is destroyed before it is placed in the trash. The same goes for tax returns that are no longer needed. Learn how to protect all mobile computer and handheld data and have a plan in place in case any family member loses a smartphone, tablet or laptop/desktop computer. Tips are available online, from smartphone service providers and device manufacturers. Online, by phone and in person, be wary of collection demands or requests for Social Security numbers or other specific account data unless the identity of the caller can be verified. Fraudulent calls are called "vishing" scams, similar to "phishing" scams that involve fraudulent emails, texts and websites used to illegally collect personal data. Install all software security updates immediately on mobile devices and computers and ensure passwords are unique and frequently updated. Sign up for fraud alerts from banks, credit card issuers or investment companies to receive immediate word of unusual or potentially illegal activity on accounts. Bottom line: Identity thieves and other financial fraudsters watch consumer behavior closely and are equally adept at stealing money and data in person, over the phone and online. Have a plan in place to protect the entire family.


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

Garden Corner

Submitted by Eric Hanssen

Browns Valley, Minnesota

The multicolored Asian lady beetles are on the move again this fall. The insect typically feeds on aphids but will also feed on sweet fruit in the fall. However the biggest problem with these insects is they like a warm place to live for the winter – your house! Soon people will be noticing these lady beetles on the windows of any sunny rooms. Not only is it a nuisance to have all these insects walking on the windows and flying through the house, they also can bite! The bites do not draw blood, nor do they carry any diseases, but it is another annoyance. Finally if you smack one you’ll find it gives off a yellow-orange fluid that has a foul odor and stains surfaces. And if that is not enough about 25% of people have allergic reaction to contact with the beetles. Not the best house guests. No one is quite sure what triggers the mass migration of these beetles from field to homes but their aggregation to building is most likely related to the shorter day lengths, a drop in temperature (40-50 F) at night and warmer (60-70 F) days. Typically the lady beetles begin moving sometime in early October. Keeping the beetles out of the house requires several different strategies. First step is to seal as many opening into the house as possible. This means around doors and windows, fascia board and vents and any other opening more than 1/8-inch or larger. Once in the house, do not use a household insecticide, instead a vacuum cleaner is a good means of getting rid of the insects though you’ll find you are repeating this treatment on almost every sunny day this fall if you did not seal the house well enough. The second approach is to apply an insecticide on the outside walls of the house. The insecticide should be applied around doors windows, and rooflines. The most common active ingredient used for control is products containing permethrin, though there are several other effective active ingredients as well. Do not apply the insecticide to the landscape as beetles can travel long distances to houses and do not necessarily land on nearby trees and shrubs before reaching the house. There is also an inexpensive light trap that can be built by homeowners. The instructions are available at:

Remember the strategies focus on keeping them out of the house, once they are in, you now have winter guests that will not leave. The multicolored Asian lady beetles were introduced into this country from Russia, Japan and Korea beginning in 1916 with most introductions in the 1960s and 1970s. They were brought over as they are efficient aphids feeders, better than our native lady beetles, and in our region are important controls for the soybean aphid and the corn leaf aphid.

The multicolored Asian lady beetles may be yellow, orange or red and sometimes with spots.

Information in this article comes from professor John Ball, SDSU Forestry Specialist in his Pest Update publication available online at:






CASE: D-15-707-528




And concerning: JOAN MAHPIYASNA, Petitioner.



NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Petitioner's request for a change of name from DANIEL SITTING HOLY MAHPIYASNA to DANIEL WARREN WILLIAMS 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 2:30 P.M. on the 21st day of OCTOBER, 2015.

Dated this 17th day of September, 2015.


/s/ B.J. Jones, CHIEF JUDGE








CASE: D-15-704-525



And concerning: DESMONA CAMPBELL, Petitioner.



NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Petitioner's request for a change of name from LINCOLN STEVE SHEPHERD to LINCOLN STEVE KONGI 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 10:30 A.M. on the 16th day of OCTOBER, 2015.

Dated this 17th day of September, 2015.


/s/ B.J. Jones, CHIEF JUDGE



Trading Post ads

Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate

Job Openings

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

Process Server (part-time), Office of Child Support

Director, Office of Child Support

TANF Intake Specialist/Caseworker, ET Demo

Bus Driver (part-time), Head Start

Closing Date: October 9th, 2015 @ 04:30 PM

Office Manager, Office of Environmental Protection

Closing Date: October 16th, 2015 @ 04:30 PM

EAP Counselor, Human Resources Department

Closing Date: October 23rd, 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: 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 (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

Vacancy: Elementary Teacher (Sign-on Bonus) Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for an Elementary Teacher Opening Date: August 10, 2015 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: Gymnasium Custodian Qualifications: GED or High School Diploma and 1 year directly related experience Opening Date: September 4, 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

Assistant Girls Basketball Coach Junior High Volleyball Coach (*certifications not necessary for Junior High Volleyball Coach) Junior High 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) Senior Class Advisor (1) Technology Mentor (3-5)

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


The Enemy Swim Day School has an immediate opening for a Para-Educator. Duties include assisting in the classroom, assisting the teaching staff, meeting with SpEd staff, reporting and other duties. The minimum of an AA degree and/or para pro assessment/certification is preferred or willing to work toward certification. Wage is dependent upon experience. Position is open until filled. Visit for an application and job description. Call (605) 947-4605 or (888) 825-7738 and ask for Virginia to inquire about the position. Applications may also be picked up in the administration office. Indian preference policies will be followed.



Sisseton Wahpeton College


Sisseton Wahpeton College has an opening for a part-time (up to 30 hours per week) Custodian in our Facilities Department. Requirements are: High School Diploma or GED. Previous janitorial experience required. Physically able to perform moderate to heavy manual labor under various conditions, as necessary. Position is open until October 2, 2015. Visit our website for a complete job description and application or contact the HR office at 605-698-3966, ext. 1118.



Dakota Nation Gaming Enterprise

POSITION: General Manager

PROPERTY: Dakota Magic Casino, Hankinson, ND

REPORTS TO: Chief Executive Officer, Dakota Nation Gaming Enterprise


The General Manager (GM) works with Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Dakota Nation Gaming Enterprise (DNGE) by profitably managing the daily gaming and business operation of the Dakota Magic Casino; more specifically, to provide overall planning and management of profit centers and various support functions, to maximize departmental productivity and meet the growth objectives of the DNGE.

EDUCATION/EXPERIENCE REQUIREMENTS: B.S./B.A. degree in a business related major and five (5) years of upper management casino experience in a casino with an annual gross income of $100M or more or an A.A degree with 10 years of casino experience. All applicants must have a minimum of five (5) years experience in a management position in a class III gaming facility over the following departments: Slots, Table Games, Marketing, and Finance. Applicant must demonstrate the requisite experience, skills and abilities to perform the duties described herein, and that applicant is qualified in all respects to fulfill the obligations herein. Must be licensable by the SWO Gaming Commission. Must obtain a PMO Gaming License. Indian Preference may apply.

Closing date: October 19th, 2015 4 p.m. (CST)

Send resume to: Dakota Nation Gaming Enterprise, Heather Williams, Corporate Executive Assistant, 16849 102nd Street SE, Hankinson, ND 58041. Or by Email:

Any questions contact Heather at 701-634-3000 ext. 2426.



Dakota Magic Casino

Job Openings

Accounting Department: Revenue Audit Clerk (Full-Time or Part-Time) Day

Cage Department: Cashier (2 Full-Time or Part-Time) Swing Supervisor (3 Full-Time or Part-Time) Day, Swing, & Graveyard

Housekeeping Department: Porter (10 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Surveillance Department: Observer (3 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Closing Date: October 9, 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):

CAGE: WINDOW CASHIER (1 FULL-TIME) GENERAL FUNCTION: Assists in providing quality services to all customers and efficient operation of the Cage. All shifts as needed. REQUIREMENTS: Able to lift 25 lb., several times throughout shift. Available to work all shifts (Day, Swing and Graveyard). Total accountability for imprest bank. Computer knowledge helpful. Customer services a must. Must obtain a Key Gaming License upon hire.

This position will close on October 7th, 2015 at 4 pm.

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.


Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel

Job Openings

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

FOOD SERVICE: COOK II (1 FULL- TIME) GENERAL FUNCTION: The purpose for this position is to assist the Cook I, Cook III, and shift supervisor. Safely prepare quality food products for customers and employees. Maintain interpersonal communications to ensure the smooth operation of the property and promote the highest degree of customer satisfaction. REQUIREMENTS: High school diploma or G.E.D. equivalent. One year of institutional cooking. Able to stand for long periods of time. Will be stooping, bending, standing for long periods of time, or lifting up to 50 lbs. Must be able to work night shifts and weekends. Cooking and food handling experience is required. Must able to obtain a Non-Gaming License.

Positions will close on October 7th, 2015 at 4 pm.

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.


Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel

Job Openings

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

SALES & MARKETING: PLAYERS CLUB CLERK (1 FULL-TIME) GENERAL FUNCTION: Perform a variety of guest services functions to customers, including Players Club. REQUIREMENTS: High school diploma or G.E.D. equivalent. Must have computer experience. Excellent customer service skills. Working knowledge of casino operations, including floor layout. Must be able to sit, stand, and walk for extended periods of time. Must be able to work all shifts, including weekends. Must obtain a Key Gaming License upon hire. Minimal bending and lifting. Repetitious computer work. (Days-8am to 4pm, noon to 8pm, and Swing-4pm to 12am.)

This position will close on October 8th, 2015 at 4:00 PM.

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.


Dakota Connection Casino

Job Openings

Facilities/Maintenance Department: Porter (1) full-time; rotating shifts, day, swing, graveyard, weekends & holidays. Good customer service skills; ability to operate necessary equipment and the physical ability to lift heavy objects up to 20 lbs or more. Have physical mobility through out facility & surrounding grounds; dependable & available to work all shifts. Must be at least 18 years old.

Restaurant Department: Prep cook/cook (2) full-time, rotating shifts, day, and swing, includes weekends & holidays. Previous experience is preferred. Must be able to multi-task; have the ability to work under pressure; the ability to operate necessary equipment; knowledge of food preparation safety requirements and ability obtain a "Food Handlers" certification; physical ability to clean, lift heavy object up to 20 lbs. or more and restock inventory. Have the physical ability to stand for prolonged periods of time. Appropriate dress code. Must be very dependable. Must be at least 18 years old & must have a High School Diploma or GED.

Bingo Department: Rover/Drop Team Member (2) full-time; will be required to work any shift assigned during Bingo hours, weekends & holidays, and drop days. Will also be trained in all positions in the bingo department; such as floor clerk, cashier, pack maker, paymaster and caller. Will be responsible for collecting slot drop and bill validators drop, counts, and verifies all boxes. Transports bill validators to the vault. Prepares appropriate paperwork and makes necessary computer entries. Must be 21 years old, must have a High school Diploma or GED. Must be able to obtain a Key Gaming License. Previous experience working with money preferred.

Opening date: Thursday, October 1, 2015

Closing date: Wednesday, October 7, 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.

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