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By Tim Leeds 

Little Shell council will hold special election

 


Little Shell council will hold special election

Mediation between two councils still pending

Tim Leeds

One of the two councils of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians is holding a special election in October. A meeting to decide whether to use mediation to resolve differences between the Tribe's two councils still is pending, a Tribal official said this morning.

"The feedback we're getting is everybody wants to get this settled," James Parker Shield, chief of staff for the council headed by John Gilbert, said this morning.

That council is holding a special election Oct. 30 to fill a vacancy.

"We need to elect a new secretary-treasurer following a recent resignation due to health reasons," Karlene Faulkner, election committee chair, said in a press release.

The council chaired by Gilbert was elected earlier this year after a group of Little Shell said the existing council, chaired by John Sinclair, was illegally elected. They say delaying the election from November 2008 to the spring of 2009 was illegal and made the election results void.

Sinclair has disputed the validity of the new council, saying delays cited by the opponents to his council were legal and necessary to give some Tribal members due process.

Earlier this year, the chair of the Montana Wyoming Tribal Leaders Council, James Steele Jr., offered to mediate between the two councils to resolve their differences.

Steele and Sinclair could not be reached by deadline this morning.

Shield said his understanding is that meetings between Steele and Sinclair's council have been delayed, and a meeting to discuss the mediation is expected to be held this weekend.

The special election being held by Gilbert's council will essentially be held online, the council said in its release.

Ballots will be posted online at the council's website, http://www.littleshelltribe.us, which can be printed off by eligible voters then mailed back to the election committee by Oct. 30.

The slate of candidates for the position will be announced by Oct. 15, the release says.

Eligible people have until Oct. 11 to file as a candidate. To be eligible, the candidate must be at least 18, an enrolled tribal member, pay a filing fee of $35, and pass a background check.

For more information about the election, people are asked to contact Karlene Faulkner at (406) 788-0994; Joe Martinez at (406) 452-6713, or Fran Flesch at (406) 788-6194.

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One of the two councils of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians is holding a special election in October. A meeting to decide whether to use mediation to resolve differences between the Tribe's two councils still is pending, a Tribal official said this morning. "The feedback we're getting is everybody wants to get this settled," James Parker Shield, chief of staff for the council headed by John Gilbert, said this morning. That council is holding a special election Oct. 30 to fill a vacancy. "We need to elect a new secretary-treasurer following a recent resignation due to health reasons," Karlene Faulkner, election committee chair, said in a press release. The council chaired by Gilbert was elected earlier this year after a group of Little Shell said the existing council, chaired by John Sinclair, was illegally elected. They say delaying the election from November 2008 to the spring of 2009 was illegal and made the election results void. Sinclair has disputed the validity of the new council, saying delays cited by the opponents to his council were legal and necessary to give some Tribal members due process. Earlier this year, the chair of the Montana Wyoming Tribal Leaders Council, James Steele Jr., offered to mediate between the two councils to resolve their differences. Steele and Sinclair could not be reached by deadline this morning. Shield said his understanding is that meetings between Steele and Sinclair's council have been delayed, and a meeting to discuss the mediation is expected to be held this weekend. The special election being held by Gilbert's council will essentially be held online, the council said in its release. Ballots will be posted online at the council's website, http://www.littleshelltribe.us, which can be printed off by eligible voters then mailed back to the election committee by Oct. 30. The slate of candidates for the position will be announced by Oct. 15, the release says. Eligible people have until Oct. 11 to file as a candidate. To be eligible, the candidate must be at least 18, an enrolled tribal member, pay a filing fee of $35, and pass a background check. For more information about the election, people are asked to contact Karlene Faulkner at (406) 788-0994; Joe Martinez at (406) 452-6713, or Fran Flesch at (406) 788-6194. ——— (Join the Havre Daily News Facebook page to keep up on local news at http://www.facebook.com/havredailynews.)

 

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