September 8, 1997
The Administration opposes H.R. 976, which would amend the distribution plan
for judgment funds for the lineal descendants of the Sisseton and Wahpeton
Tribes of Sioux Indians in the Dakotas and Montana.
H.R. 976 would make lineal descendants eligible to receive only the principal amount of the judgment funds (approximately $1.47 million) originally set aside for distribution to them in 1972. Under H.R. 976, the substantial interest from these judgment funds (approximately $14 million) would not be distributed to the lineal descendants but, instead, would go to three tribal governing bodies. These tribal entities have already received their share of the original judgment funds. This bill would unfairly and inappropriately reallocate the interest on judgment funds 25 years after Congress set forth the funds distribution scheme in the Mississippi Sioux Tribes Distribution of Judgment Fund Act of 1972.