Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 6014 Treaty rights in Minnesota In 1999 the United States Supreme Court affirmed lower court rulings in favor of the bands which retained treaty rights in Minnesota’s 1837 Treaty Ceded Territory. This included the Fond du Lac and Mille Lacs Bands in Minnesota and the Bad River, Lac Courte Oreilles, Lac du Flambeau, Mole Lake, Red Cliff and St. Croix Bands in Wisconsin. The Supreme Court ruling came after nine years of litigation. In addition, the Fond du Lac Band’s 1854 Treaty rights have been recognized by federal courts. They are currently in the regulatory phase of the litigation. The Bois Forte and Grand Portage Bands exercise treaty rights in Minnesota’s 1854 Ceded Territory under an agreement with the state and assisted by the 1854 Treaty Authority. Minnesota 1837 Treaty cases: Mille Lacs Band v. State of Minnesota and Fond du Lac v. Carlson The Mille Lacs and Fond du Lac Bands each filed a lawsuit seeking affirmation of their 1837 Treaty rights in Minnesota. Mille Lacs filed its suit on August 13, 1990, and Fond du Lac filed its suit on September 30, 1992. The Fond du Lac lawsuit also involved the tribe’s 1854 Treaty claims, as discussed on the following page. These two lawsuits traveled parallel paths through the federal courts, having been assigned to different judges, and eventually were consoli- dated on certain issues. Both sought a judgment declaring that the 1837 Ceded Territory rights continued to exist, defining the nature and scope of the rights, and defining the permissible scope, if any, of state regulation of the treaty harvest. They also sought a court order prohibiting enforcement of state fish and game laws against band members, except as specified by the court. In terms of timing, the Mille Lacs case pro- ceeded through the court first and drew the majority of public attention. In 1993, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals allowed nine Minnesota counties and six individuals to join in the case against the band. In 1994 after many months of negotiations, an attempted effort to resolve the Mille Lacs case through an out-of-court settlement failed. The proposed agreement was approved by the Mille Lacs Band, but was rejected by the State legisla- ture. The agreement would have ended the Mille Lacs case. With its rejection, the litigation pro- ceeded, with decisions ultimately being rendered in the band’s favor. The case was divided into two phases. Phase I was to determine whether the rights continued to exist, the general nature of the rights, and where the rights could be exercised. If the rights were found to continue, Phase II would address issues of resource allocation between treaty and non-treaty harvests and the validity of particular measures affecting the exercise of the rights. A 1994 ruling in Phase I of the Mille Lacs case by Judge Diana Murphy affirmed the 1837 Treaty rights and found that the rights included the taking of resources for commercial purpose; were not limited to any particular methods, tech- niques or gear; and were subject to state regula- tion only to the extent reasonable and necessary for conservation, public health or public safety purposes. Mark Slonim, attorney for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, being interviewed outside the US Supreme Court following the Minnesota v Mille Lacs Band hearing, December 1998.