Hershey said there is a "prejudice" in non-Native society that casts oral histories as less credible than testimony provided by non-Native anthropologists, ethnographers and historians. "You can't divorce these stereotypes from the colonial structures, and by colonial structures I mean, for example, evidentiary rules that prevent the admission of a great amount of oral and traditional history in court," Hershey said.The land in question in the Jemez case was declared "vacant" and sold to a private owner by the federal government in 1860, an event Jemez leaders described as a "a culture shock" in court filings. The federal government re-acquired the land in 2000. [Law Scholars Argue For Admissibility of Indigenous Oral Histories As Land Claim Evidence]On Wednesday Jemez Pueblo was granted title to a portion of the Preserve after the Court of Appeals issued a split ruling creating a precedent for other tribes seeking to regain rights to their traditional homelands. The National Park Service released a statement saying further litigation is likely.
“The State of New Mexico remains steadfast in its opposition to the issuance of a license by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for the proposed Holtec International facility in Lea County, New Mexico,” Lujan Grisham wrote. “We therefore ask that your agency immediately suspend any further consideration of the Holtec license application.” [Bill in-hand, Lujan Grisham renews fight against nuclear waste site in southeast New Mexico]
The Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range comprises about 40,000 acres in the southeastern portion of Carbon County, Mont. and northern Big Horn County, Wyo. covering lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service, the BLM and the National Park Service. There are currently about 200 horses in the Herd Management Area. [BLM SEEKS COMMENT ON PRYOR HORSE HERD MANAGEMENT PLAN]
The plan was panned as “pretty unacceptable to most wild horse advocates” by Ginger Kathrens, founder of the wild horse advocacy group The Cloud Foundation, based in Colorado. “There needs to be a removal, but this would be a real slash and burn,” she said. The herd is also well known because some of the horses display characteristics similar to the original Spanish horses brought to the Americas in the 1500s: “narrow but deep chests, short backs, with a sloping croup and low-set tail,” the BLM noted. Kathrens said her group also continues to advocate for protection of mountain lions in the Pryor Mountains, which may kill young and sick horses, as a means of natural population control. “You can’t be killing mountain lions and then complain about too many foals,” she said. “The natural way is the best way.” [Pryor wild horse plan would reduce herd to heal range]The feds should buy out landowners unwilling to lease for wildlife corridors. Migration routes over public and private land to the Fork Peck, Crow, and Northern Cheyenne nations then into Wyoming's Thunder Basin National Grassland and beyond to North and South Dakota would help create the Greater Missouri Basin National Wildlife Refuge.
“EPA could work with federal land management agencies—the Forest Service and agencies within the Department of the Interior—to strengthen federal coordination.” https://t.co/W1rx4hNVF6— interested party (@larry_kurtz) March 13, 2023
In response to concerns about potential impacts of mining on the area’s natural resources and municipal water supply, the administration is initiating consideration of a 20-year withdrawal of this critical watershed on national forest system lands from location, entry, appropriation, and disposal under the mining laws and the mineral and geothermal leasing laws, subject to valid existing rights. “The BLM is pleased to work with the USDA Forest Service on this effort,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. “This proposal will help protect a primary source of drinking water for South Dakotans as the Forest Service assesses a 20-year withdrawal.”
“The Pactola Reservoir and the Rapid Creek watershed provides drinking water for Pennington County, Rapid City and Ellsworth Air Force Base, representing the second largest population center in South Dakota” said Forest Service Chief Randy Moore. “The Pactola Reservoir area includes valued cultural and natural resources important to tribes and local communities. We’re going to study the feasibility of withdrawing lands in the area because any activity that might affect these critical resources deserves a thorough review.” [press release]So, one solution to making America the Beautiful again and solving national forest and grasslands management woes is moving the US Forest Service from the US Department of Agriculture into Interior where tribal nations could more easily assume additional responsibilities for stewardship on public land, returning the resources to apply cultural fire to their own holdings and rewilding the West.
"I am opposed to cloud seeding. This could cause additional flooding in the burn scar," Joseph Griego, a Mora resident, submitted to the ISC. "The danger of health risks involved in this process is unknown. Please stop playing God with the weather." Citing concerns that modified rainfall might occur outside the project boundaries, commissioner Phoebe Suina cast the lone vote to deny the application. Suina is a member of San Felipe Pueblo and Cochiti Pueblo, and has a background in post-wildfire disaster recovery, including experience with flood mitigation within the 2000 Cerro Grande burn scar. [Company claims 15 percent more rain from cloud seeding]Watersheds in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico provide between 50-75% of the water found in the Rio Grande but irrigators in Colorado, New Mexico and Texas take at least 80% of that from the 1,885 mile long river. A compact limits Colorado to 100,000 acre feet and New Mexico to 200,000 acre feet each year. An acre foot is almost 326,000 gallons.
The Southern Nevada Water Authority on Thursday voted to accept a $2.4 million grant from the Bureau of Reclamation to fund cloud seeding in other Western states whose rivers feed the parched desert region. The federal funding will go toward upgrading manual generators to ones that can be remotely operated, and using planes to seed clouds in key parts of the Upper Colorado River Basin, according to Southern Nevada Water Authority documents for its board meeting. The Bureau of Reclamation declined to comment about the funding decision. The grant from the bureau will be spread out over two years, temporarily doubling financial support for the Upper Basin cloud seeding from outside parties. [Feds spend $2.4 million on cloud seeding for Colorado River]Exhaust gases from aircraft are indeed mostly water vapor that become visible as a function of the dew point then often form cirrus clouds at higher altitudes and alter microclimates. But, in the name of geoengineering or albedo modification the US Air Force routinely sprays into the atmosphere an aerosol cocktail of silver iodide, lead iodide, aluminum oxide, barium, frozen carbon dioxide, common salt, soot from burning hazardous waste in pits and concocted at some of its bases.
Today, 34 years later, Moller wears smaller, frameless glasses. His hair, combed back, looks only slightly grayer than in the news reel. His appearance alone offers few clues that Moller is now 85 years old. He still speaks like he did back in 1988—with relentless optimism. “If you walk through the details, batteries create technical problems, but they also create FAA problems,” Moller says. “And I ran away from that.”For now, Moller keeps a close eye on the eVTOL landscape and writes extensive reports comparing different companies. [Fast Company]
New Mexico 606 dispensaries have sold some $440 million worth of cannabis since April, 2022 when sales began for all adults and the state is lauding boosts to the economy, burgeoning revenues, erasing the inequities left by the war on drugs and balancing the state's water crisis with growers.
On Saturday, Feb. 11, at a high school basketball game in Newell, South Dakota, Newell High School (NHS) spectators attacked Tiospaye Topa School (TTS) high school student athletes with hateful racial epithets. After the final buzzer, adults from both sides of the gymnasium met in the middle of the floor and exchanged heated remarks. In a letter to the Tiospaye Topa School Board after the game, parent Shawn Traversie said, “Racism in sports against our children has been happening for far too long, enough is enough.” Numerous sources relate that racist verbal attacks against Native students have been common for many years at sporting events in Indian Country. [After racist verbal assault on student athletes, one parent says, “Enough is enough.”]Newell is a horrible little town. Wendel Hiland was a Newell-area handyman and self-styled 'sovereign citizen' who faced 300 years in prison after he was arrested and charged in 2013 with 30 counts of abuse of a minor over the age of seven. He raped a minor, forced her into child marriage and has called Attorney General Marty Jackley "as crooked as they come." Hiland now lives in Moyie Springs, Idaho in the bowels of the American Redoubt.
Hey, if @Tony_Venhuizen is going to raise money from the far white wing of the @SDGOP for his ambitious quixotica he has to hate on some brown people to win a statewide seat. #sdleg #sdgov #SouthDakota #redstatefailure https://t.co/9Dc2ijOoR3— interested party (@larry_kurtz) March 8, 2023
Dean VanDeWiele is a South Dakota Department of Transportation Pierre-area engineer. “You're just seeing the river water elevation, and so when you're going down you really had to watch the evaluations of your auger as your drilling because you never really know if you got a good bite of clay as you're pulling it up... Or did you not get any clay at all, did you go too deep, and it's very hard for the crane to lift back up?," said VanDeWiele. The Department of Transportation said the new bridge is anticipated to be open for traffic usage in the summer of 2024 with an anticipated completion date of the summer of 2025. [Bill Janklow's idea of public radio]But here’s the dealio. In 2011 an earthquake that occurred ten miles under the clay sinkholes that developed in the Pierre Shale in Stanley County was large enough to be felt by humans who live there.
The graduation rate for Native Americans nationally hovers at about 50 percent — compared to just over 80 percent for all U.S. students. But at Walatowa, the graduation rate is 91 percent — a figure that outranks the state average for Native American graduates (64 percent) and most other charter schools in New Mexico. All but five of the school’s 68 students are Native American. Students credit Walatowa’s small, welcoming community — which stresses the teaching of Native values, culture and the pueblo’s traditional language, Towa. Even non-Native students have found in the school an environment where they can thrive. [As Native schools struggle across U.S., grad rate soars at Jemez charter]President Jimmy Carter created the modern Department of Education amidst the howls from Republicans who renounce the decision to integrate schools to the present day. Ronald Reagan moved to kill the Department of Education and when Republican Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House he was all about getting rid of DoE, too. Then came No Child Left Behind and a DoE budget that exceeds $70 billion annually.
Of nearly 100 charter schools in New Mexico, 67 are chartered by the state. Many are chartered through individual school districts, including Santa Fe Public Schools, but those are not included in the state audits. Last December, the League of Women Voters of New Mexico asked the Legislative Finance Committee to back a moratorium on opening any new charters, arguing that they are drawing money away from traditional public schools. [State Auditor calls out education department on charter schools, loss of $2.7M grant]Today, after consultations with stakeholders New Mexico's Public Education Department hopes to provide instruction that is relevant to English language learners and Indigenous students alike by adding ethnic, cultural and identity curricula to the state's social studies standards by emphasizing tribal sovereignty, social justice and sustainable futures.
Santa Fe could be home to two new state-chartered schools in the next few years — one establishing New Mexico’s fourth Explore Academy and the other offering students a Montessori experience. The most recent addition is Thrive Community School, which opened in August at a campus on Old Santa Fe Trail. It serves more than 100 kids in kindergarten to third grade this year and expects to expand to become a K-8 with an enrollment capped at 120. The eight charter schools in and around the city serve a total of about 3,800 students, including more than 2,000 from Santa Fe. If the proposed new charters are approved, they could draw 1,500 students away from Santa Fe Public Schools — a district that, like most in the state, is already shrinking. [Two new charter schools may be coming to Santa Fe]The New Mexico Public Education Commission could revoke the 2012 charter of La Tierra Montessori School of the Arts and Sciences in Ohkay Owingeh after months of debating how to handle the school because numerous incidents led to a law enforcement response. The school consists of a lower elementary that instructs first through third graders and an upper elementary that educates fourth through sixth graders.
Sponsored by Senator Mimi Stewart (D – Bernalillo) and Representative Tara L. Lujan (D – Santa Fe), Senate Bill 422 would have stopped new charter schools from opening in school districts where 10 percent of the district’s students are enrolled in charters. One supporter was Superintendent of Santa Fe Public Schools Hilario “Larry” Chavez. He expressed concern that charter schools are limiting the abilities of public schools to do their jobs, with 25 percent of the student population in Santa Fe attending charters, and more attending private schools. [Bill to limit charter schools tabled]Neighbor Lynn was an on and off member of the National Education Association (NEA) while she taught for twenty six years — twenty of those at New Mexico's oldest charter school. She told an interested party that what she liked about it was that staff and families made their own decisions and didn’t have to follow the whims of the Santa Fe Public School administration. But it wasn't always easy to get the community involved so she believes charter schools make the most sense when they have a specific purpose — like those devoted to the arts or to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) have done.
A group of Native American students is urging Flagstaff city officials to rename one of the San Francisco Peaks due to its namesakes’ history of racism. The Peaks are sacred to numerous tribal nations. Agassiz Peak is currently named after 19-century Swiss-American scientist Louis Agassiz. The biologist was a known proponent of polygenism, a theory used to legitimize belief in white superiority. Makaius Marks, who is Diné, is part of a group of students calling for the peak to be renamed to its traditional Hopi name, Öo'mawki. [Group pushes for renaming of San Francisco peak linked to racist history]Agassiz' name appears on several geographical features in North America including a glacial lake, mountains in Arizona, California, Utah, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and glaciers in Montana and Alaska.
Former Gov. Mark Dayton bluntly told a state Senate committee what he believed was at stake if the Sanford Health and Fairview Health Services controlled the University of Minnesota’s medical facilities after the two health care companies merged. Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a Republican, echoed his Democratic successor. Ellison said during testimony Tuesday that his office’s investigation into the proposed merger is still ongoing. But confirmed they have moved into a “new phase” of the investigation, and are demanding sworn statements from certain individuals as part of his office’s investigative authority. Stakeholders from the Minnesota Nurses Association, the MN AFL-CIO and the MN Farmers Union at the hearing all spoke in opposition to the merger. [Dayton calls Sanford, Fairview merger a 'betrayal’ unless U of M control stays in state]In 2016 then-Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton toured a South Dakota mining disaster calling it "a textbook example of how not to do it."
Decades of mega-mergers have resulted in nearly unprecedented concentration of corporate power in America. That's been disastrous for workers whose wages are held down by the monopolies that dominate their communities. https://t.co/wsYK3uV902— Keith Ellison (@keithellison) January 29, 2018
Republicans have voted to make our crisis of plutocracy and unprecedented wealth inequality even worse. They will have to own that vote. Our job now is to activate, organize, and hold them accountable.— Keith Ellison (@keithellison) December 20, 2017
Mergers like this make it harder for low-wage workers to unionize. To empower workers, we need to renew the American spirit of antitrust. https://t.co/QH7944qV5w— Keith Ellison (@keithellison) November 9, 2017
“In two years, we’ve become the largest transportation district in the state and the demographics of the map speak for itself,” said Missoula County commissioner Dave Strohmaier, who currently chairs the rail authority. “What this initiative has shown again and again is that we can still agree on a few things in Montana and the United States, and the importance of passenger rail is among them.” [Missoula Current]It's not in President Biden's rail plan but if someday Amtrak connects the Southwest Chief at Pueblo or Trinidad, Colorado to the Empire Builder at Shelby, Montana through Denver and Cheyenne there might be a depot at Edgemont, South Dakota. Cheyenne, Wyoming is on board with Front Range passenger rail and All Aboard Arizona says passenger rail between Phoenix and Tucson is closer than ever, too.
Legislative Bill 44, proposed by State Sen. George Dungan of Lincoln, would have Nebraska rejoin the Midwest Interstate Passenger Rail Commission, a coalition of states in the region working toward a modern rail system. [Nebraska Examiner]ip photo: the Southwest Chief chugs toward Trinidad.
“I’ve heard from far too many Montanans that TriCare isn’t working for them, and I’m concerned about the alarming number of issues with the program,” Tester said in a news release in advance of the roundtable in Great Falls. TriCare is the health care program offered by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) to military personnel, retired veterans, and their dependents. “It’s not an issue of we’ve got too many providers, it’s an issue of we don’t have enough,” Tester responded. “We’ve got 17 veterans a day as of the last census that are committing suicide, and Montana’s suicide rate is the highest in the nation. There’s not enough people out there to take care of the problem, so that when somebody is in crisis, they have no help. We don’t have enough providers that are available to get on board and when they do, they’re libel [sic] not to work because it takes 45 to 60 days or longer to get paid. This is insane.” [Tester discusses 'alarming number of issues' with military healthcare]Montana held first place in 2021 but South Dakota is again the most lucrative state to practice medicine thanks to its medical industry triopoly.
The process of moving timber by railcar in previous years was viewed as an outdated method, as it was considered unprofitable for companies seeking to create forest products. However, considering the immense ecological value (i.e., wildfire risk reduction, carbon optimization, watershed health, wildlife habitat, etc.), the process has the potential to set the precedent for getting fuels out of the forest and transformed into carbon-storing forest products. [NWTF, USDA Begin Restoration, Timber Transit as part of Master Stewardship Agreement]One needs to look no further than the BHNF for how politics has completely altered a landscape but there are plenty other public lands examples that illustrate the red state, blue state divide. The BHNF is in Region 2, based in Colorado but managers are struggling to hire personnel because a Republican governor is driving young people from South Dakota.
“We’re honored to be a partner with the USFS and NWTF on this pilot project,” said Jim Neiman, President of Neiman. “Collectively we’re helping to create resilient forests and stable economies around rural and underserved communities across the nation.” [press release, Black Hills National Forest]It’s entirely likely Neiman refuses to pay competitive wages but chooses to blame others for worker shortages instead. There are far, far better life choices than working in a sawmill for ten years let alone living in states like Wyoming and South Dakota where workers are commodities. Neiman bought mills in blue states Colorado and Oregon that expanded Medicaid, so go figure.
Test flows target the demographic unit of pallid sturgeon found in west-central Montana on the UMR between Fort Peck Dam and Lake Sakakawea and on the lower Yellowstone River. Fort Peck Dam, located at Missouri River Mile (RM) 1772, limits upstream migration of adult pallid sturgeon while the Lake Sakakawea headwaters (approximately RM 1500) limit downstream dispersal of larval pallid sturgeon. The effects of implementing test flows were evaluated from Fort Peck Reservoir downstream to Gavins Point Dam on the South Dakota/Nebraska border at RM 811. Hydrological modeling for the alternatives was performed on the entire Missouri River system to the Mississippi River confluence. Because no meaningful hydrological differences between any alternative and the No Action Alternative were evident downstream from Gavins Point Dam, human considerations analyses were limited to areas upstream of this point. This encompasses a sequence of river and reservoir segments that includes Fort Peck Dam and Reservoir, Garrison Dam and Lake Sakakawea, Oahe Dam and Lake, Big Bend Dam and Lake Sharpe, Fort Randall Dam and Lake Francis Case, and Gavins Point Dam and Lewis & Clark Lake. [Fort Peck Dam Test Release Final Environmental Impact Statement September 2021]Endangered pallid sturgeon, paddlefish, catfish and most other aquatic organisms cope with lethal levels of mercury throughout the South Dakota portion of the Missouri River so as those species are extirpated or even go extinct zebra mussels will colonize the system. Lewis and Clark Lake is at least thirty percent full of toxic sediment but that impoundment and Lake Sharpe can’t spend money fast enough to reverse the infestation of the imported bivalves in hydroelectric equipment and water courses.
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces the completion of the Lower Yellowstone fish bypass channel project near Glendive, Montana –water is flowing and the channel navigable. The success of this, three-year, $44 million construction project was due in part to the joint coordination efforts and contributions of intergovernmental organization resources to help improve the passage structure for the endangered pallid sturgeon and other native species around this intake diversion dam. In 1990, pallid sturgeons were listed as endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under the Endangered Species Act. USACE, the Wildlife Service, and Reclamation have been working in partnership to determine the effects of the Lower Yellowstone Project on the species. Two primary issues were identified, entrainment into the Lower Yellowstone main canal and lack of passage success over Intake Diversion Dam. [Omaha Division, US Army Corps of Engineers]Spring runoff allows pallid sturgeon into Yellowstone tributaries like the Powder and Tongue Rivers to spawn but the Corps canceled the Spring Pulse below Lewis and Clark Lake in 2022 due to inadequate runoff into the Missouri River and is likely to do the same this year as levels are below average again.
The Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks department's Fish and Wildlife Commission has banned the technique of snagging to catch paddlefish at the new intake fish bypass channel on the Yellowstone River near Glendive. The purpose is "to improve upstream and downstream fish passage for pallid sturgeon and other native species, including paddlefish, while maintaining water diversions into the lower Yellowstone project main canal," a FWP press release states. [Sidney Herald]
Updated 2023 runoff forecast for #MissouriRiver Basin above Sioux City, IA continues to be ⬇️avg at 21.1MAF 82% avg— NWD USACE (@NWDUSACE) February 7, 2023
Read More 👉https://t.co/Q8FE3sSP72@OmahaUSACE @KC_USACE @NWSMBRFC pic.twitter.com/r29YYbLhWP
Forty miles of the Clarks Fork – Bridger Creek to the Yellowstone River – is impaired based on high levels of nitrogen, nitrate, nitrite, ammonia, phosphorus and sediment, among others. These are pollutants associated with agriculture. https://t.co/4ddeVFRQiD— Tom Lutey (@TomLutey) February 21, 2023