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Vol. 47 Issue No. 18

Anpetu Iyamni, May 4, 2016

Inside this Edition –

Chairman's Corner: Updates from SWO Tribal Chairman Dave Flute

2nd in series: Self-governance of health services

Sota editorial: Oyate, consider filing for Sisseton School Board election

Update on Sisseton Wahpeton College

Next week: Buffalo Lake District works with BIA, Summit bank to fund Buffalo Lanes bowling alley

Dustina Gill presented the George McGovern Grassroots Award

SWO Tribe hosts US Dept. of Education consultation

May: Military Appreciation Month

SWO Youth activity highlights

Tribal employee comedy show held last week

Deadline for receipt of copy is Friday noon

Chairman's Corner

My friends and relatives:

A small delegation of Tribal leadership traveled to Washington D.C. to lobby three important issues to a variety of Congressional leaders and multiple federal agencies.

The delegation consisted of Councilman Kenny Johnson, Councilman Eddie Johnson, SWO legal counsel Shaun Eastman, Chairman's Aide Justin Chanku, two special counsels, one from Holland and Knight and one from Van Norman, and me.

Our two days of lobbying were no joke; your Tribal delegation worked very hard and I am honestly proud of their dedication and contributions while lobbying on "The Hill." In some instances we had to split up into two groups to hit the different agencies and Congressional offices; one of the special counsel had a pedometer and showed in the two full days of lobbying we had put on twenty miles of walking.

The three issues in no particular order were the following:

Indian Health Service: With the help of our health coordinator and Human Service Board, Tribal officials drafted a letter that justified our needs for additional PRC funding, and shared our solutions for a better Indian health care system. Councilman Eddie Johnson and a small team was tasked to travel to Rockville, Maryland where IHS headquarters is located to meet with ranking officials to lobby for our needs while a group of us stayed at the Capital to meet with our South Dakota leadership; he will share information at the upcoming community forum later on this month. Our health care is a battle that will continue on for a long time and it is lobbying efforts like this that show the Congressional leaders we are not going away and will continue to fight for our health care needs. We will keep everyone updated as much as possible what is being considered to fix our health care system. We will keep fighting for more dollars so that we can pay for the priority II and III needs. I personally addressed the Senators that we are continuing to see our Tribal members suffer because of deferment of payments. We also addressed the issue of our Tribal members are still being misdiagnosed. Finally, we shared with these Senators that we have been compiling complaints every day and our stack is getting high; I told them the poor quality care and lack of funding are unacceptable and need to be fixed immediately. I assure all of you we are not sitting around "thinking" of what needs to be done, we are "acting" on what needs to be done and we are trying to get these issues fixed.

Justice Center: We continue to lobby Congress, especially our South Dakota and North Dakota delegates, with the reasons we need a justice center and why we seek federal funding to construct this facility. The needs are justified and solid but we need the updated construction and operational costs. The issue we have is the previous contractor that did the work in 2005-06 is now working for the Department of Justice. Our request to the DOJ was to grant a special waiver to the contractor allowing them to update the data. The reason we want the previous contractor and not hire a new one is the previous contractor would be able to expedite the updates whereas a new contractor would start from scratch thus setting us back; we need the updated data quickly so that we can present the new data to our Senators. The Congressional leadership need to have an updated plan with new costs; not an old plan with numbers that have more than likely changed. However, our South Dakota and North Dakota leaders are supportive and waiting for this updated plan. The two scenarios are: 1. If DOJ allows the waiver for the previous contractor we will have new plans before the end of the year and be able to present them to the Congressional leadership. 2. If a waiver is not granted and we have to find a new contractor the process will take longer. However, nothing is going to deter us from continuing our efforts of obtaining funding and constructing a facility that will offer treatment, incarceration and rehabilitation so that our challenged Tribal membership will be taken care of by their own Tribe. Request to USDA to refinance the admin building: We have a chance at refinancing the debt on the administrative building at a lower interest rate. This will reduce the space cost of the building and save our Tribe millions over the term of the loan. The latest update from USDA is they are researching "who" on their end has the authority to make this decision. Although it was a long shot I felt it was better to have at least tried than to not have tried at all.

In closing, I assure all of you that this trip to D.C. was not a "fun" trip. None of us, not one person had time to go sight-seeing, go to a museum, or go to the different monuments; our purpose was to lobby on Capital Hill and that is what we did. In the two days we lobbied we hit the DOJ, DOI, DOA, HUD, IHS, BIA, CJS, House and Senate Appropriations committees, House Natural Resources sub-committee on Indian Affairs, Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, North and South Dakota congressional and we also hit WY, MT, KS, and Cal congressional offices, and we also met with a member from the White House. I will admit I told Justin if we had time I wanted to visit Arlington Cemetery and find where our Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota warriors are buried and pay my respects, however, none of us had time to do anything but sleep, eat, and lobby; that is how it should be when Tribal leaders and or program managers travel and that is the truth. Next week I will update you on the Mobile Enforcement Team that I requested, with Executive and Council support, to address the Meth problems in our communities.

Dave Flute, Chairman.

Second in a series –

Self-Governance provides flexibility to recruit and retain MDs

Twenty-five percent of the Oyate completing the 2013 Self-Governance community survey were concerned about the recruitment and retention of qualified health providers if the Tribe assumes operation. This issue is also of great importance to the Tribal Council. Self-Governance provides an opportunity for Tribes to have greater flexibility in policymaking and to exercise control over health systems design and budgeting. Under Self-Governance the Tribe can prioritize funding according to patient needs. New programs may be designed. Also, partnerships can be created to synergize health services resources.

Health systems across rural America struggle to recruit and retain qualified physicians for many reasons. The Sisseton Indian Health Service (IHS) clinic has experienced similar difficulties as other rural health systems. However, SWO has a few advantages over other communities. Our community has proximity to nearby urban settings, such as Fargo. We have a new IHS facility. We also have connections to other local and regional health systems and, therefore, potential partnerships.

Each of these advantages can be expanded and strengthened under Self-Governance. Self-Governance Tribes in other areas have developed and adopted practices that are unique to their communities to strengthen their ability to recruit and retain physicians. Practices that other Tribes have adopted include: offering unique personnel packages to fit a physician's lifestyle and desire to work in underserved communities; partnering with Tribal housing to ease the move into the community; and developing networks with private health systems to create peer-to-peer mentoring and training.

The SWO Self-Governance Planning Workgroup has reviewed the Human Services Board's 2010 and 2013 Self-Governance survey results and will develop strategies for the SWO Tribal Council to review and consider if the Tribe assumes operation of the Woodrow Wilson Keeble Memorial Health Care Center.

There are many best practices Self-Governance Tribes have leveraged to provide quality care in Tribal communities across the United States. As SWO continues its planning phase, the Work Group will share information with the community regularly. Please join the Work Group on the evening of Thursday, May 12, 2016 at the Community Center in Agency Village to learn more about Self-Governance and the planning phase that is now underway. A Community Education Forum will be held at 5:30pm, immediately following the evening meal.

Update on Sisseton Wahpeton College

By Mary Lou Wynde

Sisseton Wahpeton has been operational since 1976. Its initial funding was provided by the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education through the University of Minnesota, Morris.

The implementation of the Tribally Controlled Community College Act in 1978 has provided funding for the SWC based on its enrollment.

The SWC had initiated a Nursing Program, and two-year degree programs; Associate of Arts & Associate of Science in General Studies, Dakota Studies, Early Childhood Education and Business Management, and Chemical Dependency. It has offered Dakota traditional workshops such as pottery, bow making, quill work, bide tanning, parfleche, creating hand drums and flute making.

The major accomplishments of the SWC are the following:

Log Cabin for community meetings.

Auditorium for meetings and other public events.

Library Building.

Vocational Education Building with the sculpture of four singers.

Restoring Tall Grass Prairie planted with native plants for traditional and classroom uses.

Wind Energy System.

Geodesic Dome as Environmental Lab.

Computer Lab.

The future plans of SWC include four-year degree programs in the health field, education, agriculture and vocational education. The SWC will create a day care center, dormitory and Wacipi arena.

Many of these initiatives depend on additional funding. The student enrollment has to be increased in order to receive more funding. A grants writer is another hiring endeavor.

Dustina Gill presented with George McGovern Grassroots Award

Dustina Gill, SWO member, is the recipient of the George McGovern grassroots award from the SD Democratic Party. The award was presented in this past Saturday, April 30th, in Sioux Falls, SD.

Dustina has been working diligently with registering voters and "Get Out the Vote" (GOTV) since 2004. She has volunteered every election since then and is now a community leader in organizing and in campaigning for Democratic candidates as well as registering every person eligible to vote.

When there was a shortage of volunteers on the state's 9 reservations to register voters, she found a bus and called Tribal members from her home community to go to the other reservations to volunteer registering voters.

The "Rez tour" took these volunteers to all 9 reservations, to the most rural of communities to register and encourage people to vote.

In addition to her own efforts, she inspires those around her to get involved.

Dustina understands how important it is for Native people to be involved in state and federal elections and works to educate tribal members on the impact of their vote.

Her children, Kendall, Micah, Chauncey and Connor have all been involved in getting out the vote as well. Baby Connor could often be seen riding around on moms back in a carrier going door to door registering people.

Dustinas's motto is "Start them young to make them lifelong voters."

This amazing woman has been a leader, and continues to find creative ways to get out the vote and promote the Democratic party.

Her next task is securing satellite voting centers in rural areas of the Lake Traverse Reservation.

In accepting the award, Dustina called attention to the Tribal Get Out the Vote (GOTV) activities.

"I'm one of the many working to ensure accessible voting on the reservations, where voting is a luxury for many."

"I share this award with the many dedicated people on all the reservations and urban areas getting out the Native vote," she said.

SWO Tribe hosts US Dept. of Education tribal consultation

The SWO Tribe hosted a tribal consultation session of the U.S. Department of Education.

The DOE has scheduled these "listening" sessions across Indian country to collect information and perspectives from the tribes.

Dr. Sherry Johnson, Education Coordinator, presented a list of concerns on behalf of the SWO.

Dawn Eagle, ET Demo Manager, spoke about Dr. Johnson's presentation, that she was "telling the U.S. government a thing or two and then some."

"She is fighting for our kids! Good job, Dr. Sherry Johnson."

Also at the microphone from SWO was Mikey Peters.

Tuffy Lunderman spoke on behalf of the Rosebud Tribe.

Here are photos courtesy of SWO Tribal Secretary Crystal Owen.

"Motherhood is Sacred" program underway

Last week, on Thursday, April 21st, the SWO Tribe initiated a series of "Motherhood is Sacred" sessions.

This course helps to promote unity within community, by helping families and individuals face life challenges.

Tribal Secretary Crystal Owen said about the program: "Together we can Stand Strong and lead our families on a good path."

All mothers are invited to come and participate.

Classes are free and offered every Thursday at 1:00 p.m. in the training room at TiWakan Tio Tipi.

Facilitator is Lennie Peters.

For more information, contact Lennie at the office of the Tribal Secretary.

SWO Tribe holds comedy show

Laughter is good for the heart … and good for employee morale!

Laughter "creates hope, better relationships, improves mood and creates better working conditions," says Tribal Secretary Crystal Owen.

Her remarks came after the Tribe's comedy show held over lunchtime in the admin building rotunda last Friday.

Thank you to Audrey German and the Community Health Education staff for putting together the show.

Thank you to the comedians who came to the microphone to make people laugh and feel good.

And special thanks to Tom Wilson for, as Crystal says, "good energy and always helping out."

Admin Assistant Day observed

Last Wednesday, April 27th, was Administrative Assistant Day.

The SWO observed the day by honoring assistants from the various Tribal programs.

There was a prayer song and smudge, sending good, positive energy for each of them

"We are truly thankful for alol the good work that they do for the Oyate," said Tribal Secretary Crystal Owen.

"We value our employees and we acknowledge them using our Dakota ways," she added. "We are doing the best we can with a good heart."

"Nina wopida to everyone who could come and support our employees, and to Chairman Flute and the singers for the beautiful songs."

Partners in Policymaking celebrates 24 years

Sierra Wolcott is member of Class of 2016

Rep. Paula Hawks, Hartford of District 9, told the over 370 people who attended the 24th annual graduation for Partners in Policymaking, "You are the people who will make things happen. You are the ones who can make the difference." Hawks addressed the 31 graduates from the Class of 2016 and guests at the Ramkota Inn in Sioux Falls on April 23, 2016. Rep. Hawks was awarded the annual South Dakota Advocacy Services Legislative Advocacy Award for her work in helping to secure equality for South Dakota citizens with disabilities.

Partners in Policymaking in South Dakota is sponsored in part by grants from the South Dakota Council on Developmental Disabilities, USD Center for Disabilities, Lifescape, and South Dakota Parent Connection. The national training is facilitated by South Dakota Advocacy Services. National and state speakers who are knowledgeable of disability issues present on current issues affecting people with disabilities, best practices, and the policymaking and legislative processes at the local, state, and federal levels. The overall goal of Partners in Policymaking is to achieve a productive partnership between people needing and using services and those in a position to make policy and law. The training is one weekend per month, for six months, and takes dedication and commitment on the part of the participant.

The Class of 2016 chose Empowerment--Together We Can Do Great Things as their class theme. Graduating with the Class of 2016 was Sierra Wolcott of Sisseton. Partners training analyzes developmental disability issues and builds skills that consumers, parents, and guardians need to effectively obtain the most appropriate state-of-the-art services for themselves and others and participate in decision-making situations.

Honored guests in attendance included House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Bolin of Canton, Senator Art Rusch of Vermillion, and House Minority Whip Paula Hawks of Hartford; Liz Stowers of Sioux Falls representing Senator Mike Rounds; Jeanne Hovland from the Sioux Falls office of Senator John Thune and Owen Shay, Sioux Falls, of Representative Kristi Noem's office. Receiving special recognition, along with Rep. Hawks, was Shelly Pfaff of Pierre who received the Robert J. Kean Advocacy Award given by the Board of Directors of SDAS. Pfaff is the Executive Director of the South Dakota Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities.

The training program in South Dakota is conducted by SD Advocacy Services (SDAS). Sandy Stocklin Hook of Pierre is the project coordinator for the statewide training course. She noted, "We now have 588 individuals who have completed Partners in Policymaking living throughout South Dakota. Their voices are being heard!" Stocklin Hook also commented "We strongly believe that individuals who use services should have a major role in determining what services they are being provided and how they are delivered. It is really exciting to see the Partners' enthusiasm and commitment to improving national, state and local services." Tim Neyhart, Executive Director of SDAS, noted, "Partners is a training event that is growing in stature and being recognized as one of, if not the premier, advocacy effort in the state."

Class speakers for graduation were Lisa Harpster, Prairie City; David Colling, Howard; Melissa McClelland, Pierre; Brendon Sato, Rapid City; Elizabeth Rick Luke, Hartford; and Janelle Whitlock, Sioux Falls. Catherine Godes of Brookings, along with Sierra Wolcott of Sisseton and Abbey Jean Merchen of Spearfish sang "Lean on Me" and let the entire class in "The Fight Song."

Stocklin Hook addressed the class and said each member is a Genie, watching over each other and providing support. She went on to humorously highlight the qualities of each member of the class, often shaking and rubbing the Genie lamp. She told the class "we all have a secret Genie--it's called empowerment. Not with someone else giving us power, but with the power inside of us, the power we've had all along." She closed by encouraging everyone to "find your lamp, use it, and make a difference."

In addition to graduation ceremonies, 161 graduates of prior years of SD Partners in Policymaking spent the weekend in Sioux Falls attending continuing education classes on current issues. "Networking is a very integral part of the entire training initiative. We have made a commitment to gather all graduates with the current class and offer continuing education and networking. Once a Partner graduates from the course, they are not forgotten," commented Emily Garcia of Pierre, the PADD Program Director for South Dakota Advocacy Services.

Year Twenty-five of Partners in Policymaking will begin in November 2016. For more information on the program, contact Sandy Stocklin Hook, SD Advocacy Services, 221 S. Central Ave., Pierre, SD 57501 or call 1-800-658-4782. Or you can visit the SDAS Website for Partner information at or email

National Military Appreciation Month

Pierre, SD – At the encouragement of the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs, Gov. Dennis Daugaard has proclaimed May as "National Military Appreciation Month," a time for all to honor, remember, recognize and appreciate those who have served in the past and those now serving, as well as their families.

"The vigilance of the members of the Armed Forces has been instrumental to the preservation of freedom, security and prosperity enjoyed by the people of this great nation," the Governor's proclamation states. "The success of the Armed Forces depends on the dedicated service of its members and their families."

National Military Appreciation Month includes: Loyalty Day on May 1, Victory in Europe Day on May 8, Military Spouse Appreciation Day on May 6, Armed Forces Day on May 21 and Memorial Day on May 30.

These days provide an opportunity to learn more about military members and the families who have given of themselves to support and defend the principles we hold dear.

"The month of May provides a great opportunity to remember, honor and pay tribute to our nation's heroes - heroes who set aside their personal safety to defend and protect their family, their community and their nation from those who would threaten our way of life," said Larry Zimmerman, Secretary of the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs. "As Americans, we could not enjoy the blessings of freedom and liberty without the service of these men and women fulfilling an extraordinary duty."

Prose and Cons escapes confines of Prison walls

Compilation of poetry from ongoing SD DOC workshop

It can make a difference in how we think of prison inmates. The poems are an exciting journey into the thoughts of people who are not as different from the general population as we would like to believe. Many of them have notable flaws. But no one is all good or all bad. Reading their poetry can have the odd effect of exposing our own flaws, allowing us a chance to fix them before we are punished for them.

The story of the book's creation is a story itself. It begins with the inmates request for a local Buddhist monk to help them develop their practice. The monk becomes a volunteer in the prison and realizes many of the men struggle with verbal communication and self-confidence. He starts a poetry group as a way to create the space for the inmates to help each other help themselves learn to communicate better.

To boost their self-confidence he suggest they put their poetry into a book which could be sold. Since dividing the money was too much of a hassle and could likely lead to bad feelings and fights over the money, the group decided it was a perfect opportunity to do something for others. Because of their respect and gratitude for the work Family Connection does to help inmates and their families, it was quickly decided that Family Connection would be the beneficiary of whatever profits were made.

Family Connection provides hospitality houses that provide shelter for families traveling to Sioux Falls to visit an incarcerated loved one. This service allows families, with limited incomes, to continue the healing process with the incarcerated family member.

Prose and Cons was edited by South Dakota State Poetry Society Board Member Lawrence Diggs with a foreword by South Dakota State Poet Laureate Lee Ann Roripaugh.

Prose and Cons can be purchased at or by calling 605-357-0777, on or on special order from your local book store. It has worldwide distribution, but purchasing it directly from Family Connection will give over 80% of the cover price to Family Connection.

Contact Lawrence Diggs for more information about the book or the ongoing poetry group in the prison. High resolution images of the book are available. Diggs is also available for discussions about the book and his work with inmates.

For more information, contact Lawrence Diggs 605 486 4536, PO Box 41, Roslyn, SD 57261,

Big Stone Lake dugout canoe is dated

By Sara James-Childers and Ann Merriman

Granite Falls, MN – April 21, 2016 – This just in … the Big Stone Lake canoe, owned by the city of Browns Valley, MN and in the care of the Brows Valley Historical Society dates to 1616-1689 (99.7 probability). It has a median date of 1663 when all the numbers are taken into account.

This date puts the canoe as the 5th oldest in Minnesota. About 350 years old.

Research was conducted by Christopher Olson, PhD, MA Maritime Heritage Museum.

Here are photos of the canoe.

May: Community Action Month

Observing 50 Years of Community Action Service to SD

On August 20, 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Economic Opportunity Act which created a variety of programs, including Community Action Agencies, as part of his War on Poverty. He knew then as we know now, that the war against poverty must be won in the field, in every private home, in every public office, from the courthouse to the White House.

Recently, the Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP) dba GROW South Dakota celebrated their 50th year of community action in South Dakota. GROW South Dakota is a non-profit agency serving the following 17 counties in South Dakota: Beadle, Brown, Campbell, Day, Edmunds, Faulk, Hand, Hughes, Hyde, Marshall, McPherson, Potter, Roberts, Spink, Stanley, Sully and Walworth. GROW South Dakota was established to wage the war on poverty by implementing innovative and cost-effective programs to improve the lives and living conditions of families and individuals; by providing support and instruction for everyone in need of assistance.

"Community Action Month is a wonderful time to honor and celebrate the impact community action has in the lives of families and communities across the country," stated Marcia Erickson, GROW South Dakota CEO. "Agencies are successful every day in helping families achieve economic security. Given that the needs of each family and community are unique, community action is able to use a range of resources and programs to meet local needs in creative and impactful ways."

Despite experiencing budget cuts, shrinking resources, and increased demands for services during these challenging economic times, GROW South Dakota has been successful assisting the low-income senior citizens, families, children, and everyone within our service area to achieve and maintain economic security.

For more information regarding the agency, please contact (605) 698-7654 or visit our website,

Cansayapi Lacrosse Team opens up Dakota Premier League play

Local lacrosse team goes 2-2 in first tournament of the season

By Ben Stoterau

Sports Editor

Redwood Falls Gazette – April 25, 2016 – The local Cansayapi Lacrosse Team opened up Dakota Premier League play recently with a nice showing at the Cadwell Athletic Complex in Mitchell, S.D.

The team finished 2-2, defeating Rosebud (SD) twice and losing a pair of close battles with the Sioux Falls Sparks (6-5) and Black Hills (4-3).

According to Coach Dan Paur, the boys opened up against the Native American team from Rosebud and would roll to a 13-2 victory.

"They're a young and spirited team that fought us hard all the way to the end," Paur said. "It was a physical, competitive game, (and) after about a half we were able to find our stride."

Denton Jackson finished with five goals, Holden Kipfer had three and goalie Jon Filzen played well in net.

In their second game of the day, the boys would take a 5-2 lead into the fourth quarter against Sioux Falls, but the Sparks would rally late for a 6-5 victory.

"We showed a little fatigue in the fourth quarter," Paur said. "It was a tough loss for the boys, but I spoke about this not as a loss but a life lesson – something we could learn from and improve upon and not make the same mistakes again."

On day two, the team opened up with a rematch against Rosebud and would dominate on the way to a 9-0 victory.

Paur praised the defense of Preston Camp, Santee Red Eagle and Michael Helsper. Goalie Filzen also pitched his first shutout in net.

Game two of the day pitted the Cansayapi team against the Black Hills, and it would be a showdown that went right down to the final minutes (eventually losing 4-3).

"I thought our guys played really tough but they were able to get a late goal to win," Paur said.

The Cansayapi Team is made up from boys from the Lower Sioux Reservation, Sisseton and Marty Indian Reservations (the core from Redwood Falls/Morton area but also with five players from Sisseton and Marty).

The Dakota Premier League is comprised of teams from Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa and offers competition for U9 to high school level for both boys and girls.

The team will be back in action in early May in Watertown.

"It's a long season, and we will continue to work and get better for our next games," Paur said. "We've got a really tough team both mentally and physically, and they'll be ready to go."

Note by Coach Frankie Jackson –

On behalf of the girls and boys programs here at Cansayapi Lacrosse we would like to send a BIG BIG Thank You to members of the Lower Sioux Tribal Council for your donation of $10,000! Your generous donation will allow the girls program which is in its first year an opportunity to be successful in so many ways. In addition, your contributions will allow our boys varsity HS team an opportunity for continued success.

The resources will also allow us as coaches to expand our programming to offer opportunities for kids ages 9-19 here on the reservation. We cannot express our deep gratitude enough for your generosity and continued support! Nina Wopida Tanka Nina Wopida Tanka!

Dakota Access Pipeline –

Three federal agencies side with Standing Rock Sioux, demand review

Indian Country Times – April 27, 2016 – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation have stepped into the public fray over the $3.4 billion, 1,134-mile-long Dakota Access Pipeline that conglomerate Energy Transfer wants to run through four states.

The four agencies each weighed in during March and early April with separate letters exhorting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which is about to make a decision about the pipeline, to conduct a formal Environmental Impact Assessment and issue an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Each of them cited potential effects on and lack of consultation with tribes, most notably the Standing Rock Sioux.

"We are so thankful that the EPA, DOI, and the Advisory Council are requesting a full EIS on the Dakota Access Pipeline and are hoping that the Army Corp of Engineers listen to the request of these agencies and to the Native communities who will be affected by this pipeline," said LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, a landowner who is also with the Standing Rock Tribal Historic Preservation Office, in a statement from the Indigenous Environmental Network.

Noting that drinking water intake for the water system serving Fort Yates on the Standing Rock Reservation was a mere 10 miles from where the Missouri River crosses Lake Oahe, the EPA recommended that the Corps' draft Environmental Assessment "be revised to assess potential impacts to drinking water and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe," the EPA said in its letter. "Based on our improved understanding of the project setting, we also recommend addressing additional concerns regarding environmental justice and emergency response actions to spills/leaks."

The EPA recommended that the Army Corps revise its Environmental Assessment and open up a second public comment period.

The Interior Department expressed similar concerns in its letter.

"The routing of a 12- to 30-inch crude oil pipeline in close proximity to and upstream of the Reservation is of serious concern to the Department," the DOI said in its letter. "When establishing the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's permanent homeland, the U.S. reserved waters of sufficient quantity and quality to serve the purposes of the Reservation. The Department holds more than 800,000 acres of land in trust for the Tribe that could be impacted by a leak or spill. Further, a spill could impact the waters that the Tribe and individual tribal members residing in that area rely upon for drinking and other purposes. We believe that, if the pipeline's current route along the edge of the Reservation remains an option, the potential impact on trust resources in this particular situation necessitates full analysis and disclosure of potential impacts through the preparation of an [Environmental Impact Statement]."

The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation was "perplexed by the Corps' apparent difficulties in consulting with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe," the ACHP said in its letter to the Army Corps, listing numerous attempts at communication and consultation by the Standing Rock Sioux's tribal historic preservation officer (THPO) about everything from water concerns to the pipeline's potential proximity to burial sites.

"It is troubling to note that the THPO's letters indicate the Corps took more than seven months to address the tribe's specific concerns," the ACHP said.

"It is impressive to see these federal agencies stand up in support of the Standing Rock Lakota Nation and acknowledge tribe's right to be consulted on any extractive development that impacts lands, water, and peoples within their territory," said Dallas Goldtooth, an organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network. "And although a full EIS is a welcome step to hold Dakota Access accountable, the only way we can truly protect the land and water is by rejecting such dirty oil projects, enacting just transition policy towards renewable energy, and keeping fossil fuels in the ground."

(Editor's note: While it has taken far too long, it's a positive sign to see these federal agencies acknowledging what the tribes have long fought against – recklessly pushing energy plans without regard to the environmental disasters they cause.)

Widespread water, soil contamination in ND linked to fracking spills

Dakota Resource Council – April 27, 2016 – Accidental wastewater spills from fracking-related oil production in North Dakota have caused widespread water and soil contamination, a new Duke University study finds.

Researchers found high levels of ammonium, selenium, lead and other toxic contaminants as well as high salts in the brine-laden wastewater, which primarily comes from hydraulically fractured oil wells in the Bakken region of western North Dakota.

In 2015, members of Dakota Resource Council accompanied Dr. Avner Vengosh and others from Duke University to spill sites to collect samples, also taking them on a tour of the Mandaree area. At one site, the researchers were still able to detect high levels of contaminants in spill water four years after the spill occurred.

Streams polluted by the wastewater contained levels of contaminants that often exceeded federal guidelines for safe drinking water or aquatic health.

Soil at the spill sites was contaminated with radium, a naturally occurring radioactive element found in brines, which chemically attached to the soil after the spill water was released.

"Until now, research in many regions of the nation has shown that contamination from fracking has been fairly sporadic and inconsistent," said Dr. Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke's Nicholas School of the Environment. "In North Dakota, however, we find it is widespread and persistent, with clear evidence of direct water contamination from fracking."

"The magnitude of oil drilling in North Dakota is overwhelming," Vengosh said. "More than 9,700 wells have been drilled there in the past decade. This massive development has led to more than 3,900 brine spills, mostly coming from faulty pipes built to transport fracked wells' flowback water from on-site holding containers to nearby injection wells where it will be disposed underground."

As part of the study, the team mapped the distribution of the 3,900 spill sites to show how they were associated with the intensity of the oil drilling.

North Dakota's unconventional oil production grew from about 100,000 barrels a day in 2007 to more than 1 million barrels a day in 2014. Much of the increased production has been made possible by advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. The industry's expansion in North Dakota has fueled economic growth, especially on tribal lands and in rural areas, but also has sparked concern about drinking water contamination.

"Unlike spilled oil, which starts to break down in soil, these spilled brines consist of inorganic chemicals, metals and salts that are resistant to biodegradation," said Nancy Lauer, a Ph.D. student of Vengosh's who was lead author of the study. "They don't go away; they stay. This has created a legacy of radioactivity at spill sites."

Soil samples collected downstream from spill sites contained higher levels of radioactivity than soil at the spill sites themselves, Lauer noted. This suggests that radium builds up in the soil as the spilled brine flows through the environment.

Lisa DeVille, DRC board member from Mandaree, said that having accurate information is vital and continues to call for ongoing monitoring, research, testing, and studies to show the environmental and human health impacts of exposure. "We knew there was contamination happening from seeing the effect of oil and gas on our daily lives," she said. "We need neutral, third-party data like this study because our attempts as citizens to find out what exactly is getting into our water seem to meet wall after wall."

The Duke team published its peer-reviewed study today in the journal Environmental Science & Technology.

As part of their study, the researchers collected samples of brine-laden spill waters from four sites – two large spills and two smaller ones. They measured and analyzed the samples for inorganic contaminants and to identify the unique isotopic signature, or fingerprint, of Bakken region brines. By comparing this fingerprint to the geochemical and isotopic profiles of 29 background surface water samples collected across the region, the team was able to determine where and to what extent contamination associated with brine spills had occurred, and rule out the possibility that it had been caused by other sources.

"These isotopic tracers give scientists powerful forensic tools for tracking the presence of spill waters in the environment," Vengosh said. "Given that spills can occur upstream from drinking water sources, long-term monitoring of downstream waters is necessary to assess impacts on water quality."

One of the state's largest spills to date occurred in 2014, when an underground pipeline leak caused approximately 1 million gallons of brine to flow down a ravine and into Bear Den Bay, about a quarter mile upstream from a drinking water intake on Lake Sakakawea. "Many smaller spills have also occurred on tribal lands, and as far as we know, no one is monitoring them," Vengosh added. "People who live on the reservations are being left to wonder how it might affect their land, water, health and way of life."

"No matter what jurisdiction these spills are happening in, we must figure out both how to handle them and how to prevent them," DeVille said. "This kind of contamination is an immeasurable cost to tribal members across North Dakota who face virtually unregulated oil and gas development that has clear and lasting impacts downwind and downstream." Ph.D. student Jennifer Harkness co-authored the study with Vengosh and Lauer.

Funding came from the National Science Foundation and the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Photos from the collection study can be found here:

A copy of the report can be found here: Duke Univeristy Report: Brine Spills Associated with Unconventional Oil Development in North Dakota

CITATION: "Brine Spills Associated with Unconventional Oil Development in North Dakota," Nancy E. Lauer, Jennifer S. Harkness, Avner Vengosh. Environmental Science & Technology, April 27, 2016. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.5b06349

Legislation for education, criminal justice, tribal sovereignty

U.S. Senate – April 27, 2016 – Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after the Senate Indian Affairs Committee passed four of his bills that increase Native American educational opportunities and reform criminal justice in Indian Country:

"A quality education is critical to strengthening Indian Country, and an effective criminal justice system is necessary to combat addiction in Native communities," said Tester, Vice-Chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. "These bipartisan bills enhance tribal sovereignty and were built with direct input from tribes, and now they deserve a vote by the entire Senate."

The following bills authored by Tester were passed by the Senate Indian Affairs Committee with overwhelming bipartisan support:

Native Education Support and Training (NEST) Act – Recruits and retains more educators in Indian Country by establishing new scholarships, federal student loan forgiveness plans, and teacher development courses for prospective and existing educators who commit to teaching at schools that serve a high population of Native students or a Bureau of Indian Education school.

Tribal Early Childhood Act – Improves access to early childhood education for tribal youth by better coordinating existing Department of Health and Human Services tribal early education initiatives, providing additional flexibility to establish or expand tribally-developed early childhood initiatives in Native communities, and recruiting and retaining more early childhood teachers to Native American preschools.

SAFETY Act – Improves education facilities in Indian Country by increasing grant funding for the construction and upgrade of classrooms, teacher housing, college dormitories, STEM labs, and vocational facilities for Bureau of Indian Education schools, Tribal colleges and universities, and state-run K-12 schools with large American Indian and Alaska Native student populations.

Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts Act – Authorizes $10 million annually for the Department of Justice to administer grants to establish and maintain Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts. These courts adjudicate cases involving alcohol or drug crimes through an extensive supervision and treatment program. These programs focus specifically on holding offenders accountable while also rehabilitating them and getting them treatment, counseling and community support.

All four of Tester's bills will now be debated on the Senate floor.

Tourism legislation to help Native communities

Washington, DC – April 26, 2016 – U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) issued the following statements after the Senate unanimously approved the Native American Tourism and Improving Visitor Experience (NATIVE) Act, bipartisan legislation that will enhance and integrate native tourism, empower native communities, and expand unique cultural tourism opportunities in the United States.

"South Dakota is rich in the culture and traditions of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota nations," said Thune. "We should do all we can to help celebrate and recognize the numerous and oftentimes invaluable contributions our tribal communities provide to our state. I want to thank Sen. Schatz for his work on this bill that will help integrate tribally driven tourism plans into the existing federal tourism effort, which will help draw more visitors to the Great Plains and continue to empower our tribal citizens and communities."

"I authored this bill because our country's native communities are unique and have histories and cultures that can only be shared in America," said Schatz. "In our state, we are proud that the Native Hawaiian contribution is foundational to who we are as a place and a people. Every visitor should know that."

The NATIVE Act will require federal agencies with tourism assets and responsibilities to include tribes and native organizations in national tourism efforts and strategic planning. It would also provide Native Hawaiian, Alaska Native, and American Indian communities with access to resources and technical assistance needed to build sustainable recreational and cultural travel and tourism infrastructure and capacity; spur economic development, and create good jobs.

U.S. Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), and Gary Peters (D-Mich.) are cosponsors of the NATIVE Act.

"Travel and tourism provide massive benefit for communities in every corner of the country, and in many communities those benefits are driven by visitation to Native American lands and cultural attractions," said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association. "The NATIVE Act expands opportunities to promote tourism to these lands. International travelers to Indian Country often have a greater impact on the local economy than other visitors—staying longer, visiting more states and regions and spending more on travel service—and the NATIVE Act will harness that effect for these communities."

The NATIVE Act is supported by a broad coalition of stakeholders, including the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement, Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association, Sovereign Councils of the Hawaiian Homeland Assembly, U.S. Travel Association, American Indian and Alaska Native Tourism Association, Southeast Tourism Society, Western States Tourism Policy Council, National Congress of American Indians, Alaska Federation of Natives, Native American Contractors Association, and the Native Enterprise Initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

In September 2015, U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.

Bill to boost tourism, economic development in Indian country

Washington, DC – April 26, 2016 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp joined the entire Senate in helping pass bipartisan legislation she supported to promote economic and cultural opportunities on tribal lands by improving tourism across Indian Country.

Heitkamp cosponsored the Native American Tourism and Improving Visitor Experience (NATIVE) Act, which is aimed at expanding jobs and improving economic development in Native communities and tribal reservations, as the Sitting Bull Visitor Center on the Standing Rock Sioux reservation aims to do. The bill would also bolster tourism for cultural events like the annual United Tribes Technical College's International Powwow, while enriching and expanding opportunities for cultural tourism across the country by supporting the infrastructure development and increased coordination with tribes needed to help make that possible.

While North Dakota has the lowest unemployment rate in the country at 3.1 percent, the unemployment rate at Standing Rock was nearly 60 percent in 2014, reinforcing the need to support tribal economic development that creates jobs and grows businesses. In addition, one in four Native Americans is living in poverty.

"Across North Dakota, our tribal communities have an abundance of cultural wealth and historical sites to share, but they often lack the infrastructure needed to open up and sustain tourism which would help promote economic development," said Heitkamp. "The U.S. Senate has now unanimously voted to change that by passing bipartisan legislation I supported. By better coordinating with our Native communities, this bipartisan bill would help build up the tourism infrastructure needed to create jobs, spur economic development, and highlight Native American culture. At a time when interest for tourism on Native lands is gaining momentum, it's great news that tribal communities will be able to coordinate and seize opportunities that expand and enrich awareness of the Native American cultural experience and history while also helping lift up communities – some of the most impoverished in the country."

Bill to make annual Veteran COL adjustment automatic

Washington, DC – April 26, 2016 – U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) today introduced the Veterans' Disability Compensation Automatic Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Act, bipartisan legislation that would require the federal government to provide disabled veterans with an automatic COLA in years when there is an increase in benefits payable under title II of the Social Security Act, which sets the requirements for disability insurance benefits.

"While I wish it didn't take an act of Congress to provide our disabled veterans with the peace of mind they deserve, I'm glad we're taking this important step and making this COLA permanent," said Thune. "These brave men and women have given so much for the defense of our country, and passing this legislation is the least we can do to honor their sacrifice."

"Our veterans have served our nation courageously, and we have an obligation to make sure their benefits cover all their needs," said Schatz. "For too long, Congress has had to reauthorize these increases year after year, leaving disabled veterans waiting and wondering if the benefits they receive will cover all their disability-related expenses. It's time to give these veterans and their families the security of knowing they will always be able to depend on the benefits they have earned."

The veterans' COLA is usually, but not automatically, enacted each year and is already anticipated in the Congressional Budget Office's baseline, which means this bill is budget neutral and will provide disabled veterans much-needed certainty from year to year.

Thune introduced similar legislation in 2008, and while the bill was included in a larger legislative package that the Senate unanimously approved, it was later blocked in the House of Representatives.

Oversight for Veterans Choice Act

Washington, DC – April 28, 2016 – U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) today introduced legislation that would create an independent ombudsman position within the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) that would be tasked with establishing a methodology for resolving certain complaints levied by veterans, their family members or designated caregivers, VA employees, and third party health care providers.

Thune introduced this bill in response to concerns he received from veterans who reported ongoing scheduling issues created by the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability (Choice) Act of 2014, a law that was intended to increase veterans' access to local health care, but has been blamed for numerous scheduling backlogs.

"There are some serious problems with the Choice Act that I think everyone can recognize," said Thune. "What began as a straightforward attempt to address the scandal-plagued VA has become a headache for some veterans across South Dakota, even when few scheduling issues existed in the first place. Veterans should not have to face additional burdens to care, especially in a program that is meant to streamline the veteran experience. I hope this new position in the OIG's office would help answer our veterans' questions and resolve some of their problems. It's what they deserve."

Under Thune's legislation, the newly appointed ombudsman would serve as the central collection point for complaints related to problems with:

· Scheduling veterans to obtain care from third-party providers

· Authorizing veteran care to be administered by a third-party provider

· Enrolling third-party providers

· Copays and third-party reimbursement

· Coordinating care between the VA and third-party providers

The ombudsman, whose position would sunset after 10 years or when the Choice Act's authorization expires, would be required to provide quarterly reports to the House and Senate Committees on Veterans Affairs on his or her activity, including the total number of complaints received and complaints resolved and/or pending. He or she would also be required to provide recommendations for resolving the systemic problems with the Choice Act.

Legislation to treat PTSD in Service members

Washington, DC – April 27, 2016 – U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Armed Services and Veterans' Affairs Committees, today introduced the Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Medication Prescribing Improvement Act of 2016. This legislation would require each branch of the armed forces to monitor the prescribing practices of medications to treat symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among service members.

"Unless each branch of our armed forces carefully monitor prescriptions of medications to treat service members with PTSD, they may not be following clinical practice guidelines," said Rounds. "This could have negative consequences for our warfighters who are undergoing treatment in military medical treatment facilities. By monitoring the prescribing practices for service members with PTSD, we can make sure our returning warfighters receive the proper treatment necessary to alleviate symptoms of PTSD."

The Defense Department and Veterans Health Administration (VHA) have jointly developed clinical practice guidelines related to PTSD, which include recommendations for the treatment of symptoms among service members and veterans with PTSD. VHA currently monitors the prescribing of medications included in the PTSD guidelines, but the Defense Department does not.

Bipartisan Veterans First Act

Washington, DC – April 28, 2016 – U.S. Sen Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today praised the committee's rollout of the Veterans First Act, which is comprehensive, bipartisan legislation to improve accountability at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and enhance care for veterans. The bill includes major provisions of two pieces of legislation Rounds introduced, the Veterans Choice Equal Cost for Care Act and the Veterans Health Administration Spending and Transparency Oversight Act.

"South Dakota is home to more than 72,000 veterans who have selflessly and bravely served our country," said Rounds. "Unfortunately, many aren't receiving the quality of care they have been promised due to decades of mismanagement and ongoing problems at the VA. The Veterans First Act takes meaningful steps to hold the VA accountable and – most importantly – improve care for our nation's veterans. I'm proud to be a part of this effort and I thank the members of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, especially Chairman Isakson and Ranking Member Blumenthal, for working together to produce meaningful, bipartisan reforms at the VA. This legislation truly puts the needs of our veterans first."

Rounds Provisions Included in the Veterans First Act:

· Veterans Choice Equal Cost for Care Act - amends the Choice Act by eliminating the "secondary payer clause" to make certain veterans do not pay more for private care under the Choice Act than they would if they were seen at a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facility.

· Veterans Health Administration Spending and Transparency Oversight Act - requires the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) to produce an annual report to Congress detailing the cost of the health care it provides. Having accurate cost accounting by the VHA will help Congress identify legislative options aimed at better health care for our nation's veterans.

Legislation Rounds Cosponsored Included in the Veterans First Act:

· Honor America's Guard and Reserves Act - Honors as a veteran any person who is entitled to retired pay for non-regular (reserve) service or who would be so entitled, but for age. Provides that such person shall not be entitled to any benefit by reason of such recognition.

· Express Appeals Act – Directs the VA to, 1) carry out a five-year pilot program to provide the option of an alternative appeals process to determine appeals of claims for disability compensation more quickly; and 2) inform claimants about such program.

· Toxic Exposure Research Act - Directs the VA to select a VA medical center to serve as the national center for research on the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions of the biological children, grandchildren, or great-grandchildren of individuals exposed to toxic substances while serving as members of the Armed Forces that are related to such exposure.

· Women Airforce Service Pilot Arlington Inurnment Restoration Act - Directs the Department of the Army to ensure that the cremated remains of persons who served as Women's Air Force Service Pilots (WASPs) are eligible for inurnment in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.


By Senator Mike Rounds

April 21, 2016

It is hard to believe that in 2016, our Native American neighbors and friends are still legally subject to a number of hateful and paternalistic federal laws. Unfortunately, that's the case, but I am working to reverse a list of historic wrongs against Native American citizens brought by the early federal government.

I recently introduced the Repealing Existing Substandard Provision Encouraging Conciliation with Tribes Act, which is referred to as the RESPECT Act. It would repeal a number of historically wrong laws, including statutes that are still on the books related to Native American education, forcible relocation of Native American children to boarding schools and the withholding of rations or money owed to Native Americans. These statutes are a sad reminder of the hostile aggression and overt racism displayed by the early federal government toward Native Americans as the government attempted to "assimilate" them into what was considered "modern society." Clearly, there is no place in our legal code for such laws today.

Federal laws still exist today that would allow for the forced removal of their children to be sent to boarding schools and the parents can be denied rations if they refuse. They can still be subject to forced labor on their reservations, as a condition of their receipt of "supplies." Moreover, they can be denied funding if found intoxicated on a reservation. These statutes actually remain the law of the land. In many cases they are more than a century old and continue the stigma of subjugation and paternalism from that time period. It is without question that they must be stricken from our legal code. We cannot adequately repair history, but we can move forward.

In South Dakota, which is home to nine tribes and roughly 75,000 enrolled members, we strive to work together to constantly improve relationships and to mend our history through reconciliation and mutual respect. It's not always easy, but with our futures tied together and with our children in mind, reconciliation is something we're committed to.

While working as governor, I proclaimed 2010 the "Year of Unity" in South Dakota, in recognition of the need to continue building upon the legacy and work of those who came before us. The year 2010 also marked the 20th anniversary of the Year of Reconciliation in South Dakota, which was an effort by the late Governor George Mickelson to bring all races together.

The "Year of Unity" and the "Year of Reconciliation" were efforts to build upon a common purpose, to acknowledge our differences and yet find ways to work together. Washington, D.C., needs more of that. We can't change our history, but we can start to change the paternalistic mentality of the federal government toward Native people. Passing the RESPECT Act is the right thing to do, and is one small step Congress can take to heal some of the wrongs imparted upon Native Americans by the federal government.

Supports legislation for water resources

Washington, DC – April 28, 2016 – U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today voted to pass the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (WRDA) out of committee.

"Water is one of our most precious natural resources," said Rounds. "In South Dakota, we rely on the Missouri River system for energy, agriculture, recreation and more. The legislation we passed out of committee today includes provisions to improve water management and make certain we are being proper stewards of our waterways. Additionally, it will give the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers the direction it needs to better manage the Missouri River and prevent a major flood event in the future."

The Water Resources Development Act of 2016 authorizes 25 critical Army Corps projects in 17 states, including South Dakota. These projects will strengthen our nation's infrastructure to protect lives and property, restore vital ecosystems and maintain navigation routes for commerce to keep the United States globally competitive.

It includes a provision that requires the Army Corps to respond to requests for contracts for surplus water from reservoirs on the Upper Missouri River within 60 days. It also includes a section specifically directing the Army Corps to be the lead agency for the snowpack and drought monitoring program authorized in the 2014 WRDA and directing the Army Corps to carry out a pilot program related to sediment management in the Upper Missouri River Basin.

Rounds held an EPW subcommittee field hearing in North Sioux City last month at which Army Corps officials testified, saying their agency lacked the appropriate direction from Congress to implement the snowpack and drought monitoring program that was authorized in 2014. The passage of today's legislation will give them the direction they need to follow through on that program.

Federal funding to support healthier start for mothers and babies

Washington, DC – April 29, 2016 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced $161,000 in federal funding to the North Dakota State Department of Health to improve the monitoring for the health of mothers and their newborn children.

"We must continue to improve the health and safety of mothers and their children," said Heitkamp. "Continued investments in research and healthcare will help mothers give their children a healthy start to life. By supporting North Dakota's efforts to prioritize the wellness of mothers at all stages of their pregnancy, this federal funding will boost our state's ability to help mothers stay healthy during some of the most critical early stages of their child's life."

This federal funding is made available through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. This federal funding will support Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System's (PRAMS) efforts to improve the health of mothers and their babies before, during, and after pregnancy through health evaluations based on local needs.

Yesterday, Senator Heitkamp took to the floor of the U.S. Senate to call on Congress to provide emergency health resources that will help mitigate and combat the spread of the Zika virus. This virus is a family and community issue that affects the health and safety of women and their babies. Heitkamp has been working to protect women and children by calling on federal health officials to implement a coordinated and aggressive plan to prevent the virus from spreading.

Tribal Marijuana Sovereignty Act protects federal funds for tribes – April 20, 2016 – Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wisconsin) introduced the Tribal Marijuana Sovereignty Act on Wednesday.

The bill ensures that tribes won't be punished for entering the marijuana industry.It bars federal agencies from considering a tribe's cannabis laws and policies when allocating federal funds or considering other federal benefits.

"I strongly believe states should be allowed to enact their own marijuana laws, and have consistently supported attempts to ensure federal laws do not interfere with them," Pocan said in a press release. "I'm also an ardent supporter of tribal sovereignty, which is why I introduced this bill forbidding the federal government from considering marijuana production, possession, or sale as an adverse factor when disbursing federal funds."

The bill counteracts another proposal that takes a more controversial approach to cannabis in Indian Country. S.1984, the Keeping Out Illegal Drugs Act (KIDS Act), bars tribes that cultivate, manufacture or distribute marijuana from receiving federal funds.

"When a tribal member is cut off from federal benefits because their nation voted to approve the growing of medicinal cannabis in states where it is lawful, the U.S. Congress harkens back to reviving the disgusting policy of federal termination of tribes and their tribal members," attorney Dennis G. Chappabitty and his wife, Linda Amelia-Chappabitty, who has been helping tribes navigate the complex marijuana industry, wrote last August after the KIDS Act was introduced.

Pocan's measure also allows the Indian Health Service to discuss and recommend medical marijuana to patients. But it makes clear that the agency cannot dispense the drug under existing law.

Similar legislation regarding the Department of Veterans Affairs has been included in an appropriations bill that's advancing in the Senate.

Dozens of tribes have expressed interest in the marijuana industry but only a handful, all in Washington state, have successfully entered the market. Uncertainties in federal law and policy, along with potential encroachments by states, have kept more from moving forward with projects that could generate significant economic activity in Indian Country.

Three tribes in California saw their marijuana operations raided by federal and local authorities last year and another in Wisconsin had its hemp plants destroyed by federal agents last October. Another in South Dakota voluntarily destroyed its marijuana after being warned of a potential federal raid.

$9.1 million for tribal energy, economic development projects

Washington, DC – April 27, 2016 – Acting Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Lawrence S. Roberts announced today the availability of approximately $9.1 million for three funding opportunities for federally recognized Indian tribes, Alaska Native villages, Alaska Native regional or village corporations, authorized tribal organizations, and Tribal Energy Resource Development Organizations.

Eligible applicants may submit proposals this year for separate funding awards from the following programs: the Tribal Energy Development Capability Program (TEDC), the Energy and Mineral Development Program (EMDP), and the Economic Development Feasibility Study Program.

"Our office has never before offered simultaneously such a variety of technical assistance tools to help tribes identify and monetize the value of their energy and mineral resources, expand their ability to manage their energy resources, and test the viability of economic development proposals," said Roberts.

The Tribal Energy Development Capability Program and Energy and Mineral Development Program awards will be made based on tribal proposals either as a direct service to tribes or pursuant to the Indian Self Determination and Education Assistance Act through Public Law 93-638 contracts or self-governance compacts. The Economic Development Feasibility Study Program awards will also be made based on tribal proposals, but funding will be disbursed in the form of discretionary grants.

The Assistant Secretary- Indian Affairs' Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED) is administering funding for the Energy and Mineral Development Program (EMDP), the Tribal Energy Development Capacity program (TEDC), and the Native American Business Development Institute (NABDI) feasibility study program.

Tribes, Alaska Native villages, Alaska Native regional or village corporations, authorized tribal organizations, and Tribal Energy Resource Development Organizations are eligible for funding under the TEDC and NABDI programs. However, only tribes, tribal organizations, and Tribal Energy Resource Development Organizations are eligible to submit proposals for the EMDP because the program focuses on Indian trust land.

Tribal Energy Development Capability (TEDC) Program: $1.5 million

These awards are intended to complement the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (HEARTH) Act (25 U.S.C. § 415), which restores the authority of tribes to develop and implement tribal laws governing the leasing of tribal surface trust lands for business and other purposes.

The funds under this program are intended to enable eligible recipients to take advantage of the opportunity for self-determination afforded by the HEARTH Act by building capacity through the establishment of organizational structure(s) and/or business entity structure(s) capable of engaging in commercial energy development or management activities.

The awards will also support tribal development or enhancement of key regulatory activities, assisting tribes which seek to enter into Tribal Energy Resource Agreements (TERAs) pursuant to Title V, Section 503 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (Public Law 109-58). TERAs are agreements between tribes and the Secretary of the Interior that allow a tribe to enter into leases, business agreements, and rights-of-way for energy resource development on tribal lands without further review and approval by the Secretary.

Energy and Mineral Development Program (EMDP): $7.0 million

These awards are for projects that assess, evaluate, or otherwise promote the processing, use, or development of energy and mineral resources on Indian lands, particularly feasibility studies of community-scale energy development projects that promote local economic benefits and stronger tribal economies.

Economic Development Feasibility Study Program: $650,000

These awards are for feasibility studies that concern the viability of an economic development project, opportunity, enterprise, or business or the practicality of a technology a tribe may choose to pursue. Feasibility studies may be used to determine the likelihood of success for businesses in specific American Indian and Alaska Native communities. They can also be used to examine the credibility of a project promoter and claims made regarding a specific project.

"The TEDC program will complement the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (HEARTH) Act, which restores the authority of tribes to develop and implement tribal laws governing the leasing of tribal surface trust lands for business and other purposes," Roberts noted.

The EMDP program will, he said, "enable tribes to obtain the best information available about the quality, quantity, and value of their energy and mineral assets," while the NABDI program will "equip tribes to distinguish promising economic development proposals from those destined to fail."

Roberts also noted that feasibility studies conducted by credentialed, disinterested third parties often satisfy the due diligence requirements of lenders and can frequently be leveraged to obtain grants from other federal agencies.

More information about the importance of economic development feasibility studies can be found at IEED's online "Economic Development Principles-at-a-Glance" series on this topic at

Detailed instructions for submitting proposals for all three programs can be found at or:

Proposals for all three programs must be submitted by 9:00 p.m. EDT on July 8, 2016.

Funds for transportation infrastructure and safety in ND

Washington, DC – April 26, 2016 – U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp today announced four federal grants totaling $1,074,732 to the North Dakota Public Service Commission and three Native American reservations to support transportation infrastructure and safety.

"It's the time of the year again when North Dakotans understand that road construction will be in full force," said Heitkamp. "One of my first jobs was working road construction and safety must be the first priority of our road crews. These federal funds will provide the support needed to improve roads in Indian Country and make sure our state offers the safety awareness we come to expect."

Three grants are made available by the Tribal Transportation Program Safety Funds (TTPSF) through the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration. The TTPSF that provides federal funding to improve the safety of public roads on tribal lands. The federal funds are distributed as follows:

· Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians - $624,063

· Standing Rock Sioux Tribe - $343,200

· Three Affiliated Tribes of Fort Berthold - $97,469

The fourth federal grant by the One Call Grant Program through the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). These federal funds are to implement a public safety advertising campaign to prevent accidents from occurring from excavation damage to underground facilities. It is distributed as follows:

· North Dakota Public Service Commission - $10,000

Editorials –

Sota editorial commentary –

Oyate urged to run in Sisseton School Board election

There are three vacancies to be filled on the Sisseton School Board in the Tuesday, June 21st election.

We encourage parents of Oyate students enrolled in the public schools to consider filing and running for a seat on the Board.

Representation and, more importantly, consideration of rights and needs of Oyate students, have been sorely lacking in the local public school system for decades.

Even a recent federal lawsuit directing the Sisseton Board to work cooperatively with Oyate parents and the SWO Tribe has failed to break the impasse.

To run for a seat on the public school board, contact Lori in the school business office and take out a petition.

Petitions must be filed to with 20-30 signatures, by Friday, May 13, 2015 at 5:00 p.m.

Please consider taking a stand for our Oyate children.

To be eligible, you must live in the Sisseton School District.


-- CDF

Sota guest editorial –

Chief Arvol Looking Horse Speaks of White Buffalo Prophecy

Chief Arvol Looking Horse, 19th generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe. The leader of the Lakota Dakota Nakota Oyate, the great Sioux nation, is a man with a vision.

A Great Urgency: To All World Religious and Spiritual Leaders

My Relatives,

Time has come to speak to the hearts of our Nations and their Leaders. I ask you this from the bottom of my heart, to come together from the Spirit of your Nations in prayer.

We, from the heart of Turtle Island, have a great message for the World; we are guided to speak from all the White Animals showing their sacred color, which have been signs for us to pray for the sacred life of all things.

The dangers we are faced with at this time are not of spirit, mistakes that we cannot afford to continue to make.

I asked, as Spiritual Leaders, that we join together, united in prayer with the whole of our Global Communities. My concern is these serious issues will continue to worsen, as a domino effect that our Ancestors have warned us of in their Prophecies.

I know in my heart there are millions of people that feel our united prayers for the sake of our Grandmother Earth are long overdue. I believe we as Spiritual people must gather ourselves and focus our thoughts and prayers to allow the healing of the many wounds that have been inflicted on the Earth.

As we honor the Cycle of Life, let us call for Prayer circles globally to assist in healing Grandmother Earth (our Unci Maka), and that we may also seek to live in harmony, as we make the choice to change the destructive path we are on.

As we pray, we will fully understand that we are all connected. And that what we create can have lasting effects on all life.

So let us unite spiritually, All Nations, All Faiths, One Prayer. Along with this immediate effort, I also ask to please remember World Peace and Prayer Day/ Honoring Sacred Sites day. Whether it is a natural site, a temple, a church, a synagogue or just your own sacred space, let us make a prayer for all life, for good decision making by our Nations, for our children¹s future and well-being, and the generations to come.

Onipikte (that we shall live).

Chief Arvol Looking Horse sees a great danger threatening "Grandmother Earth" and a great hope for restoring her wholeness. So he is calling all nations to prayer of any kind in an effort to return the planet to balance, the people to spirit. I asked him why this path is the right path to take. "A man or a woman without spirit is very dangerous," Looking Horse explained in a recent phone interview.

According to this Sioux chief, the absence of spirit is causing suffering everywhere. "We are in a time of survival," he said. "But we don't want to believe it because we have forgotten our spirits. We have forgotten that Grandmother Earth has a spirit." Disconnected souls are hurting others without even knowing they are hurting others." Those being hurt include animals, trees and waterways. The Sioux have an inclusive worldview, but it was not shared by the transplanted Europeans who undertook genocide on Indian land, culminating in the Wounded Knee massacre of 1890.

That final brutality broke the "hoop" binding Indians together; however, Sioux prophecy foretold that in a hundred years the people would be reunited. Although surviving tribe members and their descendants were stripped of religious freedoms (returned to them only 32 year ago by the U.S. government), the rituals were kept and the prophecy not forgotten. So the Sioux nations set out on horseback to "mend the broken hoop" of their nation in 1986 at a sacred site known to non-Indians as Devils Tower or the Great Horn Butte; their ritual went on for four years and concluded in 1990, 100 years after Wounded Knee. During the course of that long ritual, Looking Horse was surprised by a vision that came to him of peace and unity that included not only the Indian nations but all the nations of the world, each gathering with ritual plants around sacred fires on every continent.

The Sioux chief felt called to oversee a much broader mending. But who was going to listen even to the chief of a people largely ignored in the country where they lived? "It's everyday life for us that we hold Grandmother Earth sacred, we hold the trees and the plants, everything has a spirit. We need people to be really respectful for each other. The Great Spirit put us here all together. If we're going to survive, we need to have spirit and compassion. We're asking people to go to their sacred places or sacred spaces to pray.

Brief editorial comments from the editor's desk –

On and Off the Lake Traverse Reservation

Please read Chairman Flute's column on page one.

The Chairman wanted to update the Oyate on meetings held in Washington, DC lobbying for support of the justice center, health care, economic development as well as other issues.

There are critical concerns facing the Oyate.

It truly is a critical time for the Tribe and Oyate.

A fundamental question that needs to be asked is:

Do the Oyate want to continue having its Tribe, programs and businesses operate as they have been over recent decades?

Or do the Oyate want to see some real changes made? And if so, what changes?

From environmental disasters continuing here before our eyes, investigations of theft and self-serving in programs and Districts, to an entrenched network of drug dealing, failure flashes like neon signs.

Even heroes fade in light of close scrutiny.

We are all of us flawed, but despite the flaws here is something to consider:

Do not count on someone else, rather, you become the hero.

Be the warrior.


Congratulations to Dustina Gill on receiving the prestigious George McGovern Grassroots Award this past weekend!

How exciting to see her grassroots organizing recognized by the Democratic Party.

This is not only an honor for her personally, especially for her Get out the Vote (GOTV) work on our reservations. It is about recognizing grassroots advocacy being done by Native peoples everywhere. It is about acknowledging the contributions of Native peoples in politics and as a factor in the greater society.


Buffalo Lake District has been working with the BIA to assume a loan guarantee for renovating the former Bde Tanka Tioskata – the rollerskating rink alongside Dakota Connection in Sisseton.

With a loan at Peoples State Bank of Summit, work is underway to create Buffalo Lanes.

See the photo of construction underway now to install eight lanes.

According to both Project Manager Lorraine Rousseau and Sisseton BIA Superintendent Russell Hawkins, negotiating the BIA loan guarantee program was not easy.

But with perseverance and attention to details, it has happened.

Russell talked about Buffalo Lake utilizing the loan guarantee program offered by the BIA during last winter's general council session.

At that time, that the project was to be a bowling alley had not been made public.

This is a great addition to the community and a good example of how partnering and persistence can create economic opportunity for the Oyate.

Watch for more news of the project next week and an announcement when the opening date is scheduled.


Well the entries have been submitted in the naming contest for the Tribe's new homeless center!

There were 15 entries.

We look forward to sharing the winning entry once it has been selected.

The difficult task of judging remains to be done, now the entries have been accepted by the Tribal Secretary's office.


We plan to share photos in our next issue of the Cansayapi LaCrosse players.

They took part in regional tournament play in Watertown this past weekend.

Thanks to coach Frank Jackson for the invitation to come and see them play.

Hopefully, others have been able to come and support them.


SWO Tribal Chairman Dave Flute has noted the disrepair and lack of maintenance in housing units at Rehab Village.

And litter in woods adjacent to the Tribal admin building.

The Chairman assembled a clean-up crew to address the eyesores immediately.

Watch for updated photos to come.

Thanks to photographer John Heminger for taking these pictures.


Please note!

There are AA meetings taking place at the SWO homeless center weekly.

AA is now meeting from 6-7 p.m. every Saturday.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

There will be refreshments, coffee and cookies.


Elder's Meditation:

"Modern civilization has no understanding of sacred matters. Everything is backwards." –Thomas Yellowtail, CROW

Modern civilization says, don't pray in school; don't pray at work; only go to church on Sunday. If you don't believe what I believe, you'll go to hell. Deviancy is normal. Our role models cheat, drink and run around; these are the people in the news. The news sells bad news; no one wants to hear good news. Kids are killing kids. Victims have little protection. Violence is normal. Leaders cheat and lie. Everything is backwards. We need to pray for spiritual intervention. We need to have guidance from the Creator to help us rebuild our families, our communities and ourselves. Today, I will pray for spiritual intervention from the Great Spirit.

Grandfather, we pray for your help in a pitiful way.


Words to consider (or, perhaps not!):

I am among those who think that science has great beauty. A scientist in his laboratory is not only a technician: he is also a child placed before natural phenomena which impress him like a fairy tale. Marie Curie (1867 - 1934)

Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable. John Kenneth Galbraith (1908 - 2006)

Men have become the tools of their tools. Henry David Thoreau (1817 - 1862)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but hasn't the fine line between sanity and madness gotten finer? George Price

It's a rare person who wants to hear what he doesn't want to hear. Dick Cavett (1936 - )

They are ill discoverers that think there is no land, when they can see nothing but sea. Sir Francis Bacon (1561 - 1626)

Play: Work that you enjoy doing for nothing. Evan Esar (1899 - 1995), Esar's Comic Dictionary

Man is the only animal that laughs and has a state legislature. Samuel Butler (1835 - 1902)


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 –

Note –

There are no obituaries reported in this week's Sota.

Notice of editorial policy

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

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

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

Grant County Concerned Citizens request assistance in environmental protection

(Editor's note: The following is a plea from the Grant Council Concerned Citizens who have been battling expanding CAFO dairies that use water from Lake Traverse Reservation aquifers and cause harm to the environment.)

Attached is the zoning update approved by the Grant County Commissioners.

The Grant County Concerned Citizens spent a year in meetings with the P&Z Board and First District to hammer out a proposed zoning update, which is being opposed by the Valley Queen Cheese.

The ordinance will come to a vote in June.

We have been fighting the CAFOs one at a time and getting squashed like flies. We need to change tactics. I have a sense there are many people watching on the sidelines hoping the few of us fighting will win. Well, we didn't. So now it is time to get watchers off their butts and get them to participate.

Dakota Rural Action has a C4 organization called Rural Voices. Donors to a 501 C4 do not have be disclosed which would allow people to participate financially without fear of retribution. I wonder if we get all of the various groups and individuals to partner with Rural Voices we could start advertising campaigns.

Suggested priorities:

Zoning needs to change. AND ensure the Grant County Zoning Changes are passed.

County Commissioners need to be changed out, then changes at the state level.

Enforcement and over site needs to happen at the state and local level.

Education/Awareness campaign for the general population highlighting current conditions and the catastrophic consequences of careless expansion.

Support individuals and groups who have stepped up.

Identify, expose, highlight, and forever associate the legacy of a degraded environment and negatively impacted quality of life for citizens with the individuals pushing for economic expansion for the benefit of a few at the cost of many.

Action items:

Raise money for ad campaigns (think 10s of thousands not a couple hundred bucks) Start with Grant County to get the new zoning approved and new commissioners. (why should Watertown, Sioux Falls, Brookings, raise money for Grant County? Because quite frankly shit rolls downhill.).

Send letters to editor of the Grant County Review and the Watertown Public Opinion) supporting the changes to Grant County Zoning ordinances. Everyone can participate because '___ rolls down hill.'

Send a letters the editor of the Watertown Public Opinion thanking the Mayor of Watertown and the Big Sioux Watershed for expressing their concerns about poorly sited CAFOs.

Publicly thank Grant County Concerned Citizens and Citizens against the Waverly Dairy for their efforts

Write letters to the editors of other papers asking citizens to pay attention and get involved.

Use social media to get the word out - get people to step up.

Write letter to officials involved with careless CAFO expansion and tag them with their legacy of a degraded environment and negatively impacted quality of life for citizens, commissioners, mayors, representatives, governor, First District, Eastern Dakota Water District Board members, DENR, Economic Development, Ag Department, Tourism Dept, Game Fish and Parks.

Set and reach goals for how many letters can be written.

RESPECT Act is needed legislation

Rapid City Journal Editorial – April 24, 2016 – It is never too late to address historical wrongs.

Sen. Mike Rounds is taking that message to heart with a bill he introduced last week that repeals 12 laws he called "racist" and "paternalistic" on the floor of the U.S. Senate.

Those laws are stark reminders of a not-too-distant era when the United States was at war with Native Americans, who are now our neighbors, friends and fellow residents of South Dakota.

The RESPECT Act, formally known as the Repealing Existing Substandard Provisions Encouraging Conciliation with Tribes Act, seeks to remove outdated federal laws that include unilaterally abrogating treaties, withholding funds from "hostile Indians," and punishing tribes that in the view of the U.S. government violated treaties.

The legislation also repeals a law that gives the federal government the authority to remove Native American children from their homes and send them to boarding schools without the consent of their parents, which was part of the failed U.S. policy of forced assimilation that was implemented toward the end of the 19th century.

As a result of that policy, more than 830,000 children were taken from their homes and sent to places like the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania, which had the motto "Kill the Indian, save the man."

In some cases, neither the Native American nor a man ever returned home from Carlisle. Girls also were enrolled there. Of the around 200 children buried on the school grounds, at least 10 are from the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, which still brings great pain to their decedents.

In addition to introducing this long over due legislation, Sen. Rounds also is working to bring back to Rosebud the remains of those children. It does not require legislation, but nonetheless is a complicated affair to tackle for those who rightfully want their ancestors brought home.

This is not the sort of endeavor that will earn Sen. Rounds headlines or even bolster his political profile. It is, however, the right thing to do. We should never forget the mistakes of the past, but we can and should remove unjust laws from the books.

Celebrating the Moms in Our Lives

By Sen. John Thune

One of the most noteworthy qualities about President Reagan was his unmatched ability to capture the feelings of the American people when he communicated with them. He connected with his audience in the moment, and the messages he delivered were often so timeless they will transcend generations. Of mothers, President Reagan once said, "They're the main communicators of the values by which our nation has flourished for more than 200 years – the values of honesty, responsibility, decency, and personal effort. By imparting these and other values to our children, the mothers of America quite literally shape the future." His message is as true today as it was 30 years ago.

I know everyone says it about his or her own mom, but mine really was the best. Although she's gone, I still find myself applying the lessons she taught me to my life and family today. My mom was the most positive person I ever met. She brought joy and happiness with her wherever she went and never said an ill word about anyone.

As a lot of parents are, my mom and dad were a perfect balance for one another. My dad has always loved sports. He was a star basketball player and is a member of the South Dakota High School Basketball Hall of Fame. He has an entire gymnasium named after him in our hometown. Naturally, my siblings and I had an early – and at times intense – interest in sports. If we could, we probably would have spent every minute of daylight playing with friends in the field or on the court.

My mom recognized our love for sports, but always tried to create some balance in our lives. Every day during the summer, my mom required me and my siblings to come inside and spend one hour doing things like reading a book or playing the piano. If you grew up in a small town like me, you know how painful it was to sit inside and watch your friends run around outside and have fun without you. Mom made us read all of the classic pieces of literature, and to this day, I'm still able to read sheet music and sing a tune from time to time. She exposed us to things that we had no idea how much we'd appreciate later in life. It's a part of her that still lives with me today.

Like my mom was for me and my brothers and sister, my wife Kimberley is the glue that holds our family together. Moms do a lot of things, and Kimberley has done them all. When I was first elected to Congress, my girls were young, and I traveled a lot. It's no understatement to say Kimberley took parenting to another level while I was away. I always appreciated the hard and time-consuming work she did for our family, but I especially appreciated it during the times when I was home alone with the girls. One example, I remember trying (and failing) a number of times to braid Brittany's and Larissa's hair. I'd send them off to school, and based on the results, I'm sure their teachers could always tell when Kimberley was out of town.

My job provides me with opportunities to meet great moms too. There are a lot of hard-working, talented moms on my staff throughout South Dakota and in Washington, D.C., and many more come through our offices each year. I recently met with South Dakota's 2015 and 2016 Mothers of the Year Award recipients – two amazing women, Lynn Starzl and Laurie Visser, both from Yankton. Earlier this year, I spent some time with Tami Fite and her family, winners of this year's Angels in Adoption Award. Tami and her family have defied many odds over the years, and she's a shining example of what every good mom strives to be.

President Reagan was right when he said "It's no accident that America chose to honor all mothers with a special holiday." As you celebrate this special day with the special women in your life, reflect on everything they do for our families and our society, and wish them a very happy Mother's Day.

Log in to Safety

By Rep. Kristi Noem

April 29, 2016

Remember the days before you could just Google it? If you wanted to figure out where the most complete skeleton of a T-Rex was found, for instance, you had to go to the library, dig through the card catalogue, find a book about dinosaurs, and fight through the paper cuts to find the answer. That doesn't need to happen anymore. Through a device that fits in the palm of your hand, you can access the world – and by the same account, the world can access you.

Often times, we choose to allow the world to see a piece of us. It's that culture of sharing that has resulted in 300 hours of video being uploaded to YouTube every single minute and 70 million photos being posted on Instagram every day. Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat let us share our every thought with followers, while text messaging and email has infinitely increased the speed of written communication.

But like all things, there are smart ways to use these new technologies and some not so smart ways. Earlier this year, I teamed up with Google to offer Rapid City middle schoolers some advice on how to stay safe online. They shared five tips all of us should note.

First, think before you share. Anything you put online – even if it's done so privately – can be shared. If you don't want it to get out, don't post it.

Second, protect your stuff. One of the best ways to do this online is to set strong passwords. offers this advice for setting a strong password: Select a password that has 12 characters, minimum. Include numbers, symbols, capital letters, and lower-case letters. Try not to use a dictionary word or a combination of dictionary words. And finally, don't rely on obvious substitutions, like changing all of the O's to zeros.

Third, know and use your settings. Around 15 percent of Americans have never checked their social networking privacy or security account settings. These settings let you choose who you are sharing your information with. Check yours out and adjust them as necessary today.

Fourth, understand how to identify and avoid scams. Every year, our office gets calls from dozens and dozens of South Dakotans who have received scam calls from someone pretending to be from the IRS. This is an obvious scam because the IRS will never reach out to you by phone without sending you a letter first. Other times, however, scammers may try to be more devious, posing as someone you know. Maybe they tell you your grandson needs money. If they start asking for personal information, hang up and give your grandson a call – he'll be able to tell you if it's legitimate or not.

The final piece of advice that Google offered was to stay positive. Follow the golden rule: Don't post, comment, or forward something unless you'd be alright with someone doing the same to you.

We live at an incredible time that lets us be more personally connected to the world around us than ever before. I encourage you to take the time and learn how to be safe in this new environment.

Oh, and before you pick up your smartphone to Google more about where that T-Rex was found – I did it for you. It was discovered near Faith, South Dakota in August 1990 – just months before the first webpage was posted to the World Wide Web.

Contact dermatitis from furry-rope-like vine

By Richard P. Holm MD

His rash was itchy, raised, red, blistery, and distributed in streaks along both forearms. Likely this was from poison ivy, especially since he had been camping and hunting for firewood in a woody area that weekend. Although it was too early in the spring to see the groups-of-three glossy-point?y?-leafed plants, he had been pulling on furry-rope-like woody vines, probably the winter-vine form of the poison plant. Allergists and dermatologists call the rash from poison ivy a form of contact dermatitis, which is an allergic reaction to the oil of the plant.

First exposure to the poisonous oil is the sensitizing dose and generally doesn't cause a rash. The next exposure, however, brings on the allergic eruption. 85% of adults have been sensitized to poison ivy oil, sometime in the past.

Many other agents can also cause contact dermatitis, but rarely so violent as from oil of poison ivy. About 15% of us react to nickel, which is characterized by a dry scaly rash, hives, or blisters distributed on ear lobes, around necklaces, or under wrist watches.

Other allergic contact culprits include ingredients in latex or rubber used in gloves and shoes; many perfumes blended with cosmetics, shampoos, conditioners, deodorants; the ingredients in hair dyes; some sticky adhesives used on tape, false-eyelashes, and toupees; and antibiotics found in Neosporin, Bactroban, and Triple Antibiotic ointments.

Other forms of dermatitis are not allergy driven but happen because the agent is frankly toxic, like bleach, kerosene, battery acid, and cement, or is irritating like when there is excessive wetness, washing, and detergents. Another kind of contact dermatitis follows the combination of sun exposure and an allergen like certain perfumes, insecticides and oil from the skin of a lime.

Of course, treatment depends on the specific agent that causes the problem. Cleansing the allergen away might be important. Protecting with barrier creams and ointments like zinc oxide or CeraVe might help. Sometimes oral, not topical, antihistamines help, like Zyrtec or Allegra tablets daily, but not Benadryl lotion. Normally though, topical steroids, like cortisone or triamcinolone cream, are needed to turn off the inflammation. And when the reaction is severe enough, a tablet or injectable form of steroid may be prescribed by your doctor.

The most important lesson should be avoiding the allergic, toxic, or irritating agent in the first place. My poison ivy patient was careful when he was in the woods from that day forward, especially when encountering furry-rope-like woody vines.


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 –

April showers bring May flowers: And desire to be outside

After the long winter months being cooped up inside watching TV and playing video games, we are all itching to be outdoors. In early spring, we get few spirts of warm weather that doesn't include mud, rain and wind. While we wait for temperatures to warm up so we can hit the pools, lakes and do other summer activities, there are a lot of fun activities we can do in the spring outside. If you want to go a step further you can add an eco-friendly component to your outdoor activities. SC Johnson Company developed a list of eco-friendly activities to keep kids busy this spring.

1. Plant a garden: Get your kids involved in gardening this spring. Take them to your local nursery and have them help you choose the plants and supplies you need. Next, spend a few hours in the yard getting dirty! If you're a first time gardener check out this post from fellow Blogger Panel Member Scarlet on "10 Easy Plants To Grow For First Time Gardeners."

2. Take a hike: Take your kids into the woods to help them appreciate the nature around them and get some exercise! Go to to find a trail near you. Make sure to pack the right supplies, wear sturdy hiking shoes and for safety reasons, always let someone know where you will be going.

3. Make a nature scavenger hunt: Make your kids a list of easy-to-find objects in your neighborhood and head out together to find them. For starters, add pine cones, acorns or leaves of specific colors to your list!

4. Learn about geocaching: Geocaching is a high-tech scavenger hunt using a map and a handheld GPS unit. It can be a very educational and fun way to spend the afternoon. For more information on Geocaching visit

5. Have a picnic: Pack a cooler full of sandwiches, drinks, snacks and plenty of ice and take your lunch on the road to the nearest park, field, or even your backyard. Bring some books and enjoy a quiet story after you finish eating. To ensure that your picnic is as green as the grass you are sitting on, visit my post here!

6. Visit a 'pick-your-own' produce farm: There are many farms that allow you to 'pick-your-own' produce. This is a great way to spend the afternoon with your child and teach them about reducing their carbon footprint. When you get home, have your children help you wash and prepare the produce for your next meal. If you don't plan on using all your produce right away, store it in a Ziploc bad. and place in the freezer for future use.

If you would like to learn about more eco-friendly activities specifically on the Red River, please visit River Keepers Facebook page for fun ideas to do you with your friends and family and other organized activities in the Red River Basin.


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

Youth, school activities highlights –

Education watch on the Lake Traverse Reservation

TZ student going to 2016 Youth Leadership Forum

April 27, 2016 – Samantha Crawford, a Junior at Tiospa Zina High School, will attend the 2016 Youth Leadership Forum (YLF) on the campus of the Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. YLF will be held June 5 to 9, 2016. All expenses for YLF will be provided by the Leadership Development Project.

This invitation-only Youth Leadership Forum will include "…exciting and informative … activities including motivational and humorous speakers, a legislative panel, community services, and discussions with many successful young adults." The letter of acceptance to Samantha stated that they were very impressed with her initiative, accomplishments so far, and contributions to her school.

Samantha is the daughter of Hopa Crawford and Sam Crawford and granddaughter of Alberta Crawford. She is active in sports including; cross country, basketball, wrestling, track and archery. Samantha is interested in Sports Medicine after she graduates from Tiospa Zina Tribal School.

SWC holds traditional flute-making workshop

Two pre-eminent flute makers and players led a traditional flute-making workshop last week at Sisseton Wahpeton College. Pidaunyapi Bryan Akipa and Kevin Locke for sharing your knowledge and teaching about flutes!

The class was one in a series of hands-on traditional arts and crafts workshops being sponsored on the SWC campus. Erin Griffin is in charge of the program.

Here are photo highlights provided by the SWC.

SWO youth activity highlights

Motivational speaker Jace Pratt presented to youth last Friday at the Veterans Memorial Youth Center.

The youth were there for a lock-in provided by the SWO Youth Department.

Here are photos courtesy of Everett BlackThunder and Samuel Crawford.

Tiospa Zina Track records update

Here are updated TZTS track records. If anyone has verification of a different record, please submit to the Tiospa Zina high school office. Thank you.

"Alice in Wonderland" coming Friday

Mark your calendars! Missoula Children's Theatre (MCT) will be here the week of May 2 – 6, 2016 for the production of ALICE IN WONDERLAND, which will be presented on Friday, May 6 at 7:00 pm at the Sisseton Performing Arts Center.

The Missoula Children's Theatre residency for the Sisseton Public School District is brought to you by the Sisseton Arts Council, Sisseton Public School District, National Endowment for the Arts, South Dakota Arts Council, and Montana Arts Council. For more information, call Alexis Monroe at 605-698-7613 x 2 or

The Missoula Children's Theatre (MCT), the nation's largest touring children's theatre, has been touring extensively for 41 years now from Montana to Japan, and will visit nearly 1,200 communities this year with up to 47 teams of Tour Actor/Directors. A tour team arrives in a given town with a set, lights, costumes, props and make-up, everything it takes to put on a play...except the cast. The team holds an open audition and casts 50-60 local students to perform in the production. The show is rehearsed throughout the week and one public performance is presented at the end of the week. All MCT shows are original adaptations of classic children's stories and fairytales . . . a twist on the classic stories that you know and love. Also included in the residency are three enrichment workshops presented by the Tour Actor/Directors. Creativity, social skills, goal achievement, communication skills and self-esteem are all characteristics that are attained through the participation in this unique, educational project. MCT's mission is the development of life skills in children through participation in the performing arts.

4-H receives donation

By Tracey Lehrke

Roberts Co. 4-H Advisor

Roberts County 4-H Community Building Fund received a $500 donation in memory of Leo Sebek on April 27th. This was from Karen Sebek, Mike & Bonnie Sebek & family, and Dana & Julie Stapleton & family.

Being involved in the Roberts County 4-H program has been a family tradition for four generations with Karen's family.

In the Roberts County Extension Office, Karen has a 4-H membership card as well as 4-H leader card that documented 26 years of volunteer work.

In 1966 Karen and Myron Koeppe started the Clover Leaves 4-H club in Roberts County.

Karen said, "In 4-H you got to know people from all over the county."

This is still true today as many friendships among youth, adults and families across the county as well as the state exist because of 4-H.

Donation to 4-H fund

By Tracey Lehrke

Roberts Co. 4-H Advisor

Stacey (Dempsey) Uglow and Michael Dempsey, Trustees of the Arlen Dempsey Family Trust donated to the Roberts County 4-H Community building fund.

Michael Dempsey presented a $500 check to Tracey Lehrke, 4-H Youth Program Advisor in Roberts County, on April 26.

 In the 1980s, both Michael and Stacey were members of the Hi-Way 4-H Club in Roberts County.

The Roberts County Extension Office also has their father's and aunt's 4-H membership cards.

Mr. Dempsey said, "4-H wasn't just busy time but you were always learning something. Everything you did in 4-H was a learning process."

Roberts County 4-H continues to keep that tradition strong by following the 4-H slogan "Learn by Doing" in their events and activities.

From the SD Game, Fish & Parks –

Going camping!

Do you feel like a "city slicker" when you think about camping?

Are you ever envious of your neighbor's campfire cooking?

Do you want to learn how to correctly paddle a kayak or canoe?

Boys and girls, we have the experience for you!

Becoming an Outdoors Family teaches skills for a lifetime of outdoor recreation. As part of the program fee, you'll get an electrical campsite for two nights, instruction in several outdoor skills classes, and use of program equipment. It's a great opportunity for beginning camping families or those experienced families who want to expand their outdoor skills.

This year beautiful Pickerel Lake Recreation Area is the only place hosting this awesome program, so you better hurry! Spots will fill up fast.

Make it a vacation! Extend your reservation to include the following weekend for an additional $40 (must register on or before May 31).

Pickerel Lake Recreation Area

(near Grenville, SD)

July 27-29 (Wed. - Fri.)

$60/family includes 2 nights campsite with electrical hookups.

Space is limited, so register today!

Personal finance gifts for the new graduate

By Nathaniel Sillin

College graduation season is upon us. How about a gift that will really mean something to a student in your life?

The way I see it, the best graduation gift isn't just a check in an envelope – it's coming up with a few great, memorable ideas to help a new grad get a great financial start in life. At a time when money skills for young adults have never been more important, consider the following:

Buy them a session (or more) with a money coach. If you already work with a qualified financial planner or professional tax preparer, why not pay for a session or two for the new grad to help them work out their first budget as a working adult? Take the time to talk with the professional about specific financial issues the grad will need to address as well as their first, formal budget setup if they've never budgeted before.

Help them get a start on their retirement savings. Again, most of these gift ideas can come from one person or a group throwing in cash contributions. Consider taking your new grad out to open a Roth IRA ( or Traditional IRA ( Early retirement investing is one of the most important lessons any new college grad can learn.

If they're continuing school, create a 529 plan or contribute to an existing one. Many new college graduates return to school to start a master's degree or other advanced training. If such an idea makes sense for your finances, consider opening or contributing to a 529 college savings plan ( to support their continuing education. A 529 plan is a college savings plan set up by a state or educational institution that offers tax advantages and potentially other incentives to make it easier to save for college and other post-secondary training for a designated beneficiary, such as a child or grandchild. A friend or a relative can set one up and name anyone as a beneficiary – the new grad, another relative, even yourself – and there are no income restrictions on doing so. You'll also be free to change the beneficiary if necessary. One suggestion – before you act, talk it over with the new grad or his or her family members to make sure this is the best approach for helping with their future education.

If your new grad loves a company, consider buying them a few shares. Again, evaluate this decision against your own finances and parental opinion, but if there is a particular company the new grad has bought merchandise from or otherwise has taken a great interest in, consider going with them to a brokerage to buy a few shares in the company. Make it a lesson not only in the purchase process, but in the valuation, tax and ownership issues anyone has to deal with as a long-term shareholder. Even though he or she will probably own more investments in mutual funds over a lifetime, understanding the ownership of individual stocks will inform all the investing they do.

Bottom line: Money issues can be daunting for today's new graduate. Why not disarm their concerns with some solid advice from experts you trust? By offering up basics in budgeting, saving and investing, you just might become one of their favorites.


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

Garden Corner

Submitted by Eric Hanssen

Browns Valley, Minnesota

Buying nursery stock.

This is the time of year when people begin to visit their garden centers to "spruce" up their home landscapes. While this is a good time to start looking, it might be a bad time to start buying. Many of the big box stores have seasonal garden centers that rely on container material shipped in from distance wholesale nurseries. Where the plant material is grown does not influence its hardiness. If a tree hardy to USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 4 (which covers most of South Dakota) is grown in California and shipped to South Dakota this spring, it will still survive our next winter. However, plant material shipped in during the spring from warmer climates may have already leafed out and the tender foliage is susceptible to frost injury. I have seen rows of frost damaged trees and shrubs lining the pavement of these seasonal garden centers. These damaged plants may survive but will need to releaf again this spring which is an additional stress. This may impact planting success and growth this year. Be sure to inspect container trees and shrubs for frost injury before buying them this spring and purchase trees and shrubs that have not leafed out any more than the trees and shrubs already established in the landscape. Blueberries. Another issue with some of the seasonal garden centers is the large wholesale nurseries that supply them are growing for national chains so not all the plant material shipped to South Dakota is adapted to our soils and climate. A perfect example is the 'Bluecrop' blueberries I found for sale at one of these nurseries. Not only were the plants frost damaged, they are probably not going to survive a year in a South Dakota landscape. 'Bluecrop' is one of the more cold-hardy blueberries but its limit is about -10oF, and we certainly have many winter days that dip lower than that. 'Northland' blueberry is one of the hybrid half-highs, a cross between the northern low bush blueberry and the high bush blueberry. This cultivar is a better choice for our climate since it tolerates winter temperatures as low as -30oF. 'Northblue' blueberry is another half-high that is well suited to our climate and while blueberries are self-fruitful you will obtain more fruit if you have two cultivars so best plant one or two of each. But climate is only one challenge for South Dakota growers. Blueberries perform best in well-drained organic soils with a pH about 5.0-5.5. This is far different than the typical yard in South Dakota which often is a poorly drained clay soil with a pH near 7.5 and lacks sufficient organic matter. The best means of growing blueberries in much of our state is to build your own soil. Create a slightly raised bed, about 15 inches tall and at least 3 feet wide and 3 feet long (blueberries should be planted about 4 feet apart so the final dimensions of the bed are based upon the number of plants). Fill the soil with sphagnum peat and a sandy loam soil at a ratio of about 2:1 by volume. This will settle over the year so expect to add peat every year. Partially covering the plants with oak leaves or pine needles during the winter and then allowing much of this material to break down into the soil in the spring will help supplement the organic matter.

This article comes from Professor John Ball, SDSU Forestry Specialist in his Pest Update publication available online at






CASE NO: D-16-360-234


And concerning: KRISTY OWEN and, JONAH BLUE. Parents



Take notice that a hearing will be held at the above named Court, Agency Village, outside the city of Sisseton, County of Roberts, South Dakota, on the of 25th day of MAY, 2016 at the hour of 1:00 P.M or as soon thereafter as possible. You are required to be at the hearing. Upon request, the Clerk will provide you with a copy of the Petition describing the matter. Dated this 28th day of April, 2016.



ATTEST: Eileen Pfeiffer, Clerk of Courts







CASE: D-16-339-213




NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Petitioner's request for a change of name from BRANDY JO DECOTEAU to BRANDY JO DECOTEAU-HEMINGER shall be heard before the Honorable B.J. Jones, Judge of Tribal Court, in the Courtroom of the Sisseton Wahpeton Tribal Court at Agency Village, South Dakota at 3:00 P.M. on the 25th day of MAY, 2016.

Dated this 27th day of April, 2016.



ATTEST: Eileen Pfeiffer, Clerk of Courts


Trading Post ads



MAY 7, 2016

9:00 A.M. TO 1:00 P.M.

Little boys clothing size 6, 10-12; little girls size 7/8, toys, lots of kids shoes; household items; Lots of Jr. size girl clothing; big men's clothing; women's clothes; shoes, brand name purses: M.Kors/Couch; miscellaneous items: Selling Irene's caramel rolls; free coffee.


Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate

Job Openings

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

Protective Service Worker, Child Protection Program

Procurement and Contracting Officer, Vice Chairman's Office

Dispatcher, Law Enforcement

Closing Date: May 6th, 2016 @ 04:30 PM

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

SIE Project Manager, Education Department

Water & Sewer Laborer, LTUC

Parole Agent, SWO Parole

Security Officer, SWO Tribal Admin Bldg.

Administrative Assistant Mgr., SWO Tribal Admin Bldg.

Closing Date: May 6th, 2016 @ 04:30 PM

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) 698-8251. (Tribal preference will apply).



The SWO Dakotah Language Institute is looking for a photographer. This person will be given a list of specific pictures which need to be taken which will become a part of the Dakotah language curriculum for our schools so they need to be complete on or before July 15. Photo quality is a must. Payment will be made on a "per picture" basis and the price is negotiable. The person selected must either have or obtain a Tribal Business License.

Tammy DeCoteau

SWO Dakotah Language Institute

PO Box 509

Agency Village, SD 57262




Sisseton Wahpeton College


The Sisseton Wahpeton is seeking qualified candidates for the position of Comptroller. Candidates must possess a bachelor's degree in accounting and either a Certified Public Account (CPA) or a Certified Management Accountant, or a master's degree in accounting. Candidates should also have a minimum of four (4) years' experience in accounting and a minimum of two (2) years' work experience with fund accounting, preferably at an educational institution. Working knowledge of Jenzabar is strongly preferred. Indian preference will apply. Salary range: $65,000-$85,000. Benefit package includes 401K, Health, Vision, Dental, and Life Insurance. Visit our website: for a complete job description and details for applying, or contact the HR office at (605)698-3966, ext. 1118. Position is open until May 6, 2016.



Tiospa Zina Tribal School

Employment Opportunities

Current 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.

2016 Summer Program Vacancies - May 31st to June 23rd (4 days/wk):

Vacancy: (4) Special Education Teachers Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Special Education Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: (4) Special Education Paraprofessionals Qualifications: GED/High School Diploma plus a score of 461+ on the Paraprofessional Praxis, or 48+ college credits; and 1 year directly related experience. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: (4) Elementary Teachers Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for an Elementary Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: (2) Middle School Teachers Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Middle School Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: (2) High School Teachers Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a High School Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: (2-3) Bus Driver/Custodians Qualifications: GED/High School Diploma and a Current South Dakota Commercial Drivers License with Air Brakes and Passengar endorsements and 1 year directly related experience. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

2016-2017 School Year Vacancies:

Vacancy: High School Science Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a High School Science Teacher Opening Date: January 29, 2016 Closing Date: open until filled

Vacancy: High School English Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a High School English Teacher Opening Date: March 11, 2016 Closing Date: Open until filled

Vacancy: Family and Consumer Sciences and Personal Health Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Family and Consumer Sciences and Personal Health Teacher. Opening Date: March 11, 2016. Closing Date: April 29, 2016.

Vacancy: Career and Technical Education Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Career and Technical Education Teacher Opening Date: March 11, 2016 Closing Date: Open until filled.

Vacancy: Middle School Math Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Middle School Math Teacher. Opening Date: March 11, 2016. Closing Date: April 8, 2016.

Vacancy: Middle School English Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Middle School English Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: Middle School Social Studies Teacher Qualifications: Current South Dakota Certification meeting the Highly Qualified status for a Middle School Social Studies Teacher. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

Vacancy: Special Education Paraprofessional Qualifications: GED/High School Diploma and a 461+ score on the Paraprofessional Praxis, or 48+ College Credits; and 1 year directly related experience. Opening Date: April 22, 2016. Closing Date: May 6, 2016.

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


Dakota Magic Casino

Job Openings

Cage Department: Cashier (8 Full-Time or Part-Time) 2 Day, 3 Swing, 3 Graveyard

Foods Department:

Bus Persons (Full-Time or Part-Time) as needed

Cashiers (Full-Time & Part-Time) as needed Dishwashers (Full-Time or Part-Time) as needed

Wait Staffs (Full-Time or Part-Time) Swing

Hotel Department: Room/Laundry Attendant (10 Full-Time or Part-Time) 8:00am to finish

Housekeeping Department: Porter (12 Full-Time or Part-Time) as needed

Marketing Department: VIP Ambassador (Full-Time or Part-Time) Swing

Security Department:

Dispatcher (2 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Officer (2 Full-Time or Part-Time) Rotating

Smoke/Gift Shop Department: Clerk (2 Full-Time or Part-Time) Swing

Table Games Department: Dealer (1 Full-Time, 2 Part-Time) Rotating

Closing Date: May 6, 2016 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):

PORTER: PORTER (2 Full-Time Graveyard) GENERAL FUNCTION: Serves as janitorial/housekeeping staff for guests and casino operations. REQUIREMENTS: Physical mobility throughout the facility and surrounding grounds. Able to lift 40 to 50 lbs. Must obtain Non Gaming License upon hire.

This position will close on May 4, 2016 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 Connection Casino

Job Openings

C-Store Department: Shift Supervisor (1) full-time, rotating shifts will assist the C-Store Manager in the operations and administration of the department. Excellent communication skills - both written and verbal. Excellent people & customer service skills. Supervisory experience; 2 years required. 2-3 years retail experience. Excellent supervisory skills: must show leadership, organizational and motivational skills. Knowledge of and ability to use the necessary equipment. Computer literate. Ability to work independently. Must have physical ability to lift up to 40 lbs. Previous Money handling is preferred. Must be at least 21 years old. High School Diploma or G.E.D. required.

Opening Date: Thursday, April 28, 2016

Closing Date: Wednesday, May 11, 2016 @ 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.


Dakota Connection Casino

Job Openings

C-Store Department: Clerk/Cashier (2) full-time, rotating shifts, day, swing, graveyard, includes weekends & holidays. Excellent customer service skills; math skills essential; ability to operate necessary equipment; physical ability to lift moderate amounts of weight; previous experience working with money preferred; strong organizational skills managing various functions; dependable & available to work any & all shifts. Must be at least 21 years old & have a High School diploma or GED.

Opening date: Thursday, April 28, 2016

Closing date: Wednesday, May 4, 2016 @ 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.


Dakota Connection Casino

Job Openings

Security Department: Officer (1) full-time, rotating shifts, day, swing, graveyard, weekends, holidays, and the ability to work flexible hours. Mobility throughout the facility 45% percent of time; will be stooping, bending, walking for long periods of time, able to lift up to 40 pounds, computer skills required for report writing. Will be exposed to noise and tobacco smoke. Appropriate dress code. Must be at least 21 years old. Must have High School Diploma or G.E.D. Must be able to obtain a Key License.

Opening date: Thursday, April 28, 2016

Closing date: Wednesday, May 11, 2016 @ 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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