Great Lakes Indian Fisheries Committee


     The Great Lakes Indian Fisheries Committee, commonly called the Lake Committee, provides recommendations in regard to the commercial treaty fishery in Lake Superior. Five representatives, each from a tribe with interest in the Lake Superior fishery, compose the committee. The Lake Committee focuses on issues such as quotas, harvest levels, fishing units and seasons governing tribal fishermen from the Keweenaw Bay, Red Cliff and Bad River Bands.





Article I - Name

The name of this committee shall be the Great Lakes Indian Fisheries Committee.

Article II - Purpose

The purpose of this committee shall be to:

  1. Develop biological understanding of the Great Lakes and their tributaries.

  2. Develop resource management plans for the tribes.

  3. Encourage intergovernmental cooperation in Great Lakes research and management.

  4. Develop the capabilities of its member tribes to regulate their use of natural resources.
  5. Assist tribes to develop resource regulations suitable for tribal adoption and adequate to protect the environment.

  6. Develop law enforcement capabilities adequate to insure compliance with resource regulations.
  7. Assist tribes in the development of judicial systems adequate to adjudicate cases arising under tribal resource regulations.
  8. Assist tribes to secure and enjoy their usufructuary rights in the Great Lakes and their tributaries.

  9. Develop the capability to recognize, analyze, and recommend action on actual and potential environmental degradation which may impair the opportunity to engage in usufructuary activities on the Great Lakes or their tributaries.

  10. Assist tribes to develop optimum economic return from the exercise of their rights consistent with conservation necessity.
  11. Educate tribal membership, tribal leadership, and the general public in issues and events related to the other purposes stated herein.

Article III - Membership

  1. Membership.  Membership in this committee is open to any federally recognized Indian tribe which:

    • Is a member of the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission; and

    • Has a reservation on one of the Great Lakes or a tributary thereto; and

    • Has by resolution adopted this charter.

  2. Withdrawal.  Any member tribe may withdraw from the committee by resolution and transmittal thereof to the committee chair.

Article IV - Transacting Business

  1. Representatives.  Each member tribe may appoint one representative to the committee and one alternate. Each tribe may select its representative and alternate by whatever means and for whatever term deemed appropriate by the tribe.

  2. Meetings.  The committee shall hold an annual meeting in October of each year. The committee shall also hold meetings as needed, which may be called by the chair, or in the absence of the chair, the vice chair, or in any event by any three member tribes or the executive administrator of the Commission. Meetings may be conducted by conference call.

  3. Action.  All action must be authorized by motion and approval by a majority of those tribes in attendance.

  4. Voting.  On all matters upon which a vote shall be taken each member tribe shall have one vote.

  5. Quorum.  A majority of the tribes shall constitute a quorum.

Article V - Officers

  1. Officers.  The officers of the committee shall be the chair and vice-chair, and shall be elected by the members of the committee at the annual meeting.

  2. Terms.  The term of office for each officer shall be one year except that the officers first elected under this charter shall serve until the 1985 annual meeting.

  3. Vacancies.  In the event a committee officer is for any reason unable or unwilling to complete his or her term the committee shall, on at least 30 days notice to its members, hold a special election for the purpose of replacing the officer.

Article VI - Duties of Officers

  1. Chair.  The chair shall preside over all meetings of the committee, shall perform all duties of a chair, shall exercise any authority delegated by the committee, and shall have authority to sign all documents for the committee. The chair shall work with the administrative staff to insure that official minutes of all meetings are kept and that meeting notices are mailed in a timely manner. The chair shall be allowed to vote.

  2. Vice-chair.  The vice-chair shall assist the chair when called upon to do so and in the absence of the chair shall preside. while presiding, the vice-chair shall have all the rights, privileges, duties, and responsibilities of the chair.

  3. Further Duties.  The duties of the officers may be defined further by motion of the committee.

Article VII - Powers

The committee shall have the following powers:

  1. To undertake any programs consistent with the purposes as defined in Article II.

  2. To formulate and adopt a budget to carry out its activities, and to secure funding through the Commission therefore, and to approve modifications and amendments to the budget as may from time to time be required.

  3. To formulate and adopt policies for the provision of technical, enforcement, and judicial services to the committee and its member tribes, to be implemented by the Commission staff.

  4. To establish subcommittees to pursue such objectives as the committee shall direct.

Article VIII - Amendments

This charter may be amended by affirmative vote of at least tow-thirds of the member tribes upon furnishing to all member tribes of the Commission a copy of the proposed amendment at least 60 days in advance of the vote on such amendment.

Article IX - Ratification

This charter shall be in full force and effect when ratified by at least five member tribes.