Vitally Interesting News - Part 2 (better)
This was posted on Bob's board by 'Hairball' about limiting Indian tribal netting:
*COURT DECISION - On December 19 the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
released four decisions that may have an amazing impact on fisheries in
Washington State should the Governor of the State of Washington decide he
wants to implement them.
I have been waiting for a ruling like this for twenty-two years.
This is a summary of what those decisions were;
1. The Chehalis Tribe does not have any treaty fishing privileges granted
other tribes since they were not party to the treaties. Any commercial
they catch in Grays Harbor, the Chehalis River, or elsewhere must come
the non-treaty half of the catch.
2. The Lummi Tribe does not have any treaty fishing privileges in the
Straits of Juan de Fuca. Their treaty fishing areas
exist only in the Bellingham Bay area and Admiralty Inlet.
3. The Lummi Tribe does not have treaty fishing privileges in Area 10
(Edmonds south to Vashon Island).
4. The Muckleshoot Tribe does not have treaty fishing privileges beyond
This ruling is huge in its implications because it is the first time
since the infamous Boldt court decision in the late 1970s that the courts
have seen fit to define what "usual-and-accustomed" places are for
tribes. Judge Boldt never did define that term which is what lead to the
free-for-all unregulated commercial fishing by the tribes and possible
endangered species listings of Puget Sound steelhead. As long as each
commercial fisher could fish anywhere he wanted free of any regulation
because he was a treaty fisher, no tribe had a vested historical interest
protecting an individual run. The Lummi's in particular poached fish from
the territory of other numerous tribes even though, historically, those
tribes had been mortal enemies for hundreds of years. The Muckleshoots
been doing the same with geoduck clams, a resource we will probably lose
within the next three years due to tribal overharvest.
If Judge Boldt had originally decided to define usual-and-accustomed
places for each tribe, it would have gone a long way to curb our state
bureaucracies' irresponsible fisheries management policies and
search-and-destroy goals for fisheries for the last twenty years. As
capitalism teaches, we tend to protect the things we own.
Another astounding effect of these decisions will be the effect on
future salmon treaties with Canada. The Lummi Tribe among others have
insisting on being treated as a coequal with the United States and Canada
talks over catch of Canadian sockeye salmon from the Frasier River as they
passed through the Straits of Juan de Fuca. Canada has insisted that our
"aboriginals" such as the Lummis are U.S. citizens and therefore would not
deal with them directly. On occasion, the Canadian negotiators have even
walked out of negotiations rather than negotiate with these supposed
sovereign nations of U.S. citizens. The Lummi's and other tribes like the
Swinomish have even insisted they were not bound by decisions to limit
ability to hijack valuable Canadian sockeye salmon in the Straits of Juan
Fuca. This court decision has effectively removed the Lummi's as barriers
these international talks.
Effectively, this ruling has given the state the power to regulate
fisheries of these tribes anywhere outside of their "usual-and-accustomed"
areas (the Chehalis no longer have the one they illegally demanded) and,
therefore, these tribal fishers become just like the rest of us with no
This court ruling is a huge ***** in the propaganda armor of the
as promoted by the mainstream media and the Democratic Party that
is futile to any outrageous tribal demand.
Don't get your hopes up too high for any immediate effect in our
however. Treaty tribes funnel millions of dollars of gambling and other
money into the state Democratic Party and provide it numerous services for
good reasons. This situation will be fun to watch develop.
*Why does the Governor have to 'impliment' proper rulings set forth by the courts of law? And what is he likely to do?