Federal government will pay two tribes $186 million in land dispute
Ponca City Now - September 28, 2015 9:03 am
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – The federal government will pay the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes $186 million to resolve a tribal trust land mismanagement controversy that dates back more than 100 years.
The Oklahoman reports the federal lawsuit settlement calls for the Choctaw Nation to receive $139.5 million and the Chickasaw Nation $46.5 million. U.S. District Judge Lee R. West filed an order last week in Oklahoma City federal court approving the agreement.
The order states that in settling, the government was not admitting any liability or wrongdoing.
The lawsuit focused on claims that the federal government mismanaged hundreds of thousands of acres in southeastern and south-central Oklahoma where the two tribes were relocated in the 1830s after being removed from their ancestral homelands in the southeastern U.S.
( Choctaw Chief Gary Batton, left, and Chickasaw Nation Gov. Bill Anoatubby in 2014. Photo from Chickasaw Nation)