Native Americans are poised to receive a $3.4 billion dollar settlement from the U.S. government, one of the largest settlements in this country’s history.
The settlement between the U.S. government and Native Americans has to do with land trusts that Native Americans say were managed in such a way that disadvantaged them and reduced their royalties.
Yahoo News reports:
One of the largest U.S. government settlements in history began with a lawsuit filed in 1996 byElouise Cobell of Browning, Mont. The Blackfeet leader observed that those who leased Indian land made money from its natural resources, while the Indians themselves remained in poverty with no accounting of the royalties from that land that were held in trust for them by the government.
“We all are happy that this settlement can finally be implemented,” attorney Dennis Gingold said in a statement. “We deeply regret that Ms. Cobell did not live to see this day.”
The settlement calls for an estimated 350,000 Native Americans to begin receiving $1,000 compensatory checks as early as Christmas.
“With the settlement now final, we can put years of discord behind us and start a new chapter in our nation-to-nation relationship,” said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.