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  • The Role of Native American Tribes in Implementing California’s New Sustainable Groundwater Management Act

    By: Walter E. Rusinek | Senior Counsel | walter.rusinek@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com Responding to continuing drought conditions in California that have led to the increased use of groundwater, the legislature passed and Governor Brown recently signed the “Sustainable Groundwater Management Act” and related provisions (“Act”). The Act is the state’s first serious effort to address on a state-wide basis the problem of groundwater overuse (ove...

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  • Native American Heritage Month: Celebrate it with The Cherokee Word for Water

    By: Haley Buzzard | Guest Contributor Stephanie Conduff | Law Clerk | stephanieconduff@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com November is Native American Heritage Month, and this brings to mind a lesson that modern day problems can still be solved through the use of traditional concepts, and strong resolve. This lesson is brought home in The Cherokee Word for Water, a feature-length motion picture that tells the story that led Wilma Pearl Mankiller to become th...

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  • Aviation in Indian County: Seminole Tribe of Florida

    By: Sandra L. Shippey | Partner | sandra.shippey@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com Stephanie Conduff | Law Clerk | stephanieconduff@procopio.com Seminole Tribe of Florida Chairman James E. Billie, an ex-military and licensed pilot, used to land his plane on a desolate reservation road. His airplane allowed him to travel independently to and from the Seminole Tribe of Florida reservation as he worked to develop Tribal businesses. My, how things have changed. ...

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  • U.S. Department of Education Announces Upcoming Cities on its First-Ever School Environment Listening Tour for Native American Students

    By: Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com The White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education (WHIAIANE) has announced it is having listening sessions on Native students’ educational environments throughout Indian Country in November. The listening sessions will give tribal governments, tribal citizens, educators, parents, community members and students the opportunity to speak with White House officials and Department of Education staff. This is a...

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  • California Legislature Enacts Tribal Court Civil Money Judgment Act

    By: Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com California has 109 federally recognized tribal governments and millions of tribal citizens living within the state, according to the Judicial Council of California. The Bureau of Indian Affairs lists more than 566 tribal governments nationwide in the 2014 Tribal Entities List and with changes in the federal acknowledgement process - this number could grow considerably in coming years. Each of these Nations is a sovereign and operates...

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  • Advising the Advisor to the President: My Experience with Federal Governmental Advisory Committees

    By: Stephanie Conduff | Law Clerk | stephanie.conduff@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com There are experiences in life that you have to be there to believe. So often in Indian Country, we recount the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and the Indian Health Service (IHS) failures without any appreciation of the people who create these organizational structures and buildings in Washington DC and all over the United States. Two of the major players that you read a...

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  • Mixing and Looking to the Future

    By: Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com Procopio recently hosted the third informal mixer with the Native American Lawyers Association (NALA), San Diego and local Native American law students from the three local law schools – University of San Diego, California Western and Thomas Jefferson schools of law. The mixers are designed to familiarize the students with members of the local Native American Bar, provide an informal forum for them to make contacts and seek mentors...

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  • Peacemaking, Restorative Justice and Empowering Native Communities

    By: Stephanie Conduff | Law Clerk | stephanie.conduff@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com I am a certified peacemaker. How so? How many of our readers know what that means? Raise your hands? Okay, that’s what I thought… At this point, you may imagine me calming the nerves of family members or even that of co-workers at the water cooler. Maybe you envision a circle and a talking piece. You see — circles— even blogging circles — are trendy. Even this...

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  • Tribes' Co-Regulator Status Not Sufficient to Negate Ninth Circuit's General Applicability Standard

    By: Sandra L. Shippey | Partner | sandra.shippey@procopio.com Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com The United States District Court for the Central District of California recently issued an Order a granting a petition by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) to enforce its civil investigative demands (“CID’s”) against three tribally owned online lending companies operating on tribal reservations and in doing so followed the Ninth Circuit rule s...

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  • Now Accepting Applications for Procopio's 2015 Native American Internship Program

    By: Theodore J. Griswold | Partner | ted.griswold@procopio.com Procopio has a long-standing tradition of providing growth opportunities to the communities we serve. Procopio's Native American Practice Group extends this tradition by actively investing in the future leaders of Indian Country through offering paid internships for Native American law students or law students with an emphasis in Native American law. Please join us in identifying qualified legal students within Native American commun...

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