Chadd Everone/Ludwig Attempts Inappropriate Personal Correspondence with California Superior State Court Judge, Ronald L. Styn.
It has been brought to the attention of the California Valley Miwok Tribe that a recent improper correspondence was initiated by Chadd Everone and his band of co-conspirators whom for many years now, have exercised undue influence over certain individuals in both the state and federal governments. Mr. Everone, in a gesture of goodwill and camaraderie, sent to Judge Ronald L. Styn (of the Superior Court of California, San Diego) a Christmas card of seasons greetings and goodwill. Although, taken at face value this may just be highly improper communication initiated by someone of Mr. Everone's stature, with low ethical standards and legal knowledge that at best, is very lacking.
We at the Tribe though feel it raises more questions than it gives answers. Why would anyone send a judge, whom presided over a case that they were involved in, a personal correspondence? The Tribe has have never heard of anyone initiating this type of action. Judge Styn did show throughout the presidings a certain bias towards the tribe and a lack of understanding as to the legal aspects of the issues.
He was even appealed to the state appellate court and his earlier decisions which were detrimental to the Tribe were overruled. Was the fix in? Why did Mr. Everone feel he had a connection to this judge that extends past the courtroom?
The judge even issued an order remanding the correspondence back to Mr. Everone and his nefarious accomplices. Is this judge trying to officially distance himself as judiciously as possible because of what this implies, or maybe what this proves?
Sheppard/Mullin /Richter and Hampton, the firm that represents Mr. Everone, does exercise undue influence within many jurisdictions within the state and federal government and the courts that represent both due mainly to the fact of their corporate size and the power that they wield.
On more than one occasion outside of the courtroom, Mr. Everone had been seen thanking and congratulating California Department of Justice attorney Mr. Neil D. Houston for his service, even going so far as to shake his hand and pat him on the back. What does this closeness to a state justice attorney that is not even under his employ imply?
As we stated earlier it may just be Mr. Everone's continuing ineptitude and feelings of unrequited love that initiated this action, or can it be that this exposes a much more sinister and diabolical connection that continues to adversely affect the Tribe to this day?
Like we previously said this, "raises more questions than it gives answers".
~The California Valley Miwok Tribe
Rosette LLP Memorandum
02/23/14 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICES, TRIBAL LAND, STOCKTON, CA -
Below is a memorandum initiated by Rosette LLP, with documented facts supporting all points made in the memorandum. This is indisputable factual evidence, as it was obtained through way of public access, courtesy of Chadd Everone/Ludwig himself. Mr. Everone, working on behalf of A.D. Seeno, Jr., and the Seeno family of the Peppermill casino chain in Nevada, fancies himself quite the orchestrator of fraud (to hear the braggart himself, please click on the Everone/Ludwig Audio Archives section to the left of this article). Nonetheless, he is also quite the bumbler, without whose help the corresponding documents to this memorandum and the additional 2,500 pages of documentation that the tribe is currently in possession of, would not have been possible.
The Tribe has been asked many times how and why this has been allowed to happen and how this continues to be possible. The Tribe will periodically release future documents as evidence to show that when an individual such as casino/homebuilder multi-billionare A.D. Seeno, Jr., hires a law firm such as Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton (one of the largest law firms in the United States with offices worldwide), and certain individuals with the trust responsibility to work with and protect Native American tribes from Abramoff-type situations, fail in their trust responsibilities and in some cases, even become willing participants, then this will happen and continue to do so. The only way this will ever stop, is when ethical people of high moral fiber, well-versed in federal Indian law and well-established Indian policy implement for the third and final time, a decision based upon that criteria; and direct minor officials to enforce that decision regardless of whatever their personal opinions or feelings towards this tribe and re-establish their trust responsibilities.
Everone/Ludwig and Dixie Depositions
01/22/14 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICES, TRIBAL LAND, STOCKTON, CA -
Below please click on the links to the view pages actually taken from the court-ordered depositions of Chadd Everone/Ludwig and Yakima Dixie, referenced in the Indian Country Today story "BIA Should Not Be Allowed to Make Enrollment Decisions for Tribes" by Honorable Chairperson Sherry Treppa.
California Valley Miwok Tribe Donation Account
02/03/10 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICES, TRIBAL LAND, STOCKTON, CA -
Under advisement from our many supporters whom wish to contribute to further the Tribe's continuing fight against the injustices wrought upon it by corrupt government officials (in collusion with greedy developers networking with local opportunists trying to pass off phony non-tribal peoples as the California Valley Miwok Tribe), The Tribe has now established a donation account. If you would like to contribute to our cause, please click the donate button, located to the left of this message. Being we are legitimate Tribe, we have an Internal Revenue Service EIN and non-profit status. So please keep record of any donations for future tax credits. Thank you for your support.
California Valley Miwok Tribe
03/06/2010 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICES, TRIBAL LAND, STOCKTON, CA -
Featured this month is an indigenous writer that goes by the pen name of “Buffalohair”. He is an independent and blatantly honest reporter whom thoroughly researches and compiles all the factual information that he then assesses before putting pen to paper. This writer has much experience himself with the federal government and he (himself) is a member of an indigenous tribe. And as such, he has great introspect and is in no way fooled by the misrepresentations or immorality of the type of individuals that continually cross this tribe's path. Read his latest column below and enjoy.
Feds Raid Seeno Empire Offices, Miwok Tribe Still Under Siege
In a Thursday morning raid 30 FBI, IRS and Secret Service agents stormed the offices casino mogul, land developer, contractor *Albert Seeno and his associates with search warrants in this quiet Concord California community. The exact nature of the raid was still under seal of the court. According to William Goodman, attorney for the multi faceted business empire the Seeno family was working with investigators to resolve the situation and were confident they would reach a positive resolution to the matter.
CA Miwok Tribe Court Battle
On January 28th, 2010, I was given the opportunity to speak to Ms. Silvia Burley, Chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe and Mr. Tiger Paulk, consultant for the Tribe. This is a story only movies are made from. I was given information about the illegal withholdings of tribal funds of the Indian Gaming Revenue Sharing Trust Fund (RSTF) monies that have been illegally stopped by the California Gambling Control Commission since2005.
The tribal members of CVMT had recently been given a notice to vacate the property located at 10601 Escondido Place, (Morada) Stockton, CA 95212 from the San Joaquin County Superior Court, Case No. 39200900210084CLUDSTK, (One West Bank vs CVMT), an Order to vacate immediately. A letter written on behalf of CVMT by Tribal attorney Saba Bazzazieh, Esq., of Rosette & Associates 565 West Chandler Blvd., Suite 212, Chandler, Arizona 85225 asking for a 30 day extension of time was denied by One West Bank. This property of one and one half acres has been considered by the tribe to be its reservation and has served multipurpose functions in regards to the 10 tribal families it services.
On January 15th with no extension given, the Tribe with the support of various activist organizations and the local community went back into lockdown to defend its Tribal land until late in the afternoon when the bank relented and gave the time for the current suit against the CGCC to be heard in the California Appeallant Court in San Diego. The California Valley Miwok or “Sheep Ranch Tribe” has been a federally recognized tribe since 1915. In 1915 the tribe was allotted 0.92 of an acre and in 1966, Ms. Mabel Hodge Dixie was identified by the government as the sole authority for the Tribe. At this time, the Tribal landbase was relinquished to her as an Individual. Upon her death in 1971, the landbase was probated to be distributed among her heirs with its most recent resident and Spokesperson being Yakima Dixie, before the formal Tribal organization of 1998.
In 1998 the Tribe expanded to 5 members and sought government contracting. In 1999 they acquired their first ever PL-93 638 contract under the leadership of newly elected Chairperson Silvia Burley. They were trying to organize under IRA but due to the local BIA’s mishandling of their request and subsequently trying to force non-Tribal people onto the Tribe, the Tribe exercising their sovereign authority rescinded their request for a Secretarial Election and voted to organize under Custom and Tradition.
In 1999 the state of California initiated compacts with Gaming Tribes. Within these agreements was language that Compact Tribes provide monies to the state gaming commission Revenue Sharing Trust Fund (RSTF), as a federally recognized Tribe, as listed in the federal register the California Valley Miwok Tribe is eligible to receive quarterly distributions from the Revenue Sharing Trust Fund. In 2000, Yakima Dixie as Vice Chairman became influenced by Mr. Chadd Everone aka Chadd Ludwig, a non-native, whom was brought in by Le Roi Chapelle and William “Bill” Martin to help facilitate control of the tribe. Yakima under the control of Chadd Everone then decided to challenge Ms. Silvia Burley’s position as Tribal Chairperson. The Tribe has successfully defended against time and time again. Protecting it’s elected leadership and Tribal sovereignty that even though Mr. Dixie was not the recognized Tribal authority he tried to give away. When, what later became known as the Everone Group discovered in December of 1999, through Ray Fry, Tribal Operations, BIA / CCA, that Mr. Dixie was not the chairperson nor the leader of the tribe, Bill Martin and Le Roi Chapelle conspired with Chadd Evereone to manipulate Yakima Dixie’s role (who had no authority to sign any contracts or agreements on behalf of the tribe and certainly no authority to put the sovereignty of the entire tribe in jeopardy). Nor had he the authority to sign the proposed agreement with the fictitious group created by them known as ABC Boxing, Inc. and/or Martin/Chapelle Group.
In the deposition of Dale Risling, Sr., Superintendent CCA / BIA, Tuesday, February 10, 2004, Mr. Risling states that the Central California Agency / Bureau of Indian Affairs recognizes Ms. Silvia Burley as the chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe since the tribe notified the BIA in May of 1999. He also states that the California Valley Miwok Tribe is a federally recognized tribe. On record in this same deposition, it is recorded that the CCA / BIA takes the position that the CVMT does not need to organize pursuant to the Indian Reorganization Act. Further in to the deposition of Mr. Risling, he states that the Bureau “does not get involved into the internal election disputes of tribes”. When asked if there were any internal issues relating to an election at Hoopa while Mr. Risling was Chair, he answered, “Yes, there were.” Asked if the BIA involved itself in that internal dispute. He answered, “No.”
On February 9, 2010, at 1:30 pm in San Diego, state of California Court of Appeals,4th District division, court case # D054912, between the California Valley Miwok Tribe (CVMT) vs. State of California Gaming Control Commission. A three judge panel heard arguments of the ongoing litigation of the unjustified withholding of the yearly distributed $1.1 million dollars California Gaming Compact, Revenue Share Trust Fund (RSTF) allocation to the CVMT.
The CVMT Legal Counsel Mr. Manny Corrales was very well prepared and presented and outstanding argument of facts and statutes of the CA Gaming Compact in regards to the proceedings. The prosecution for the state of California seemed less confident and often times contradicted themselves in defense of their case.
After the summary & rebuttal was heard the judge’s panel gave notice that “the matter is submitted for further briefing and review.” This is a 30 day process in which the state of California Court of Appeals judges’ panel will make judgment.
01/13/2010 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
The California Valley Miwok Tribe
COMMUNITY OVERNIGHT PRAYER VIGIL
Help the California Valley Miwok Tribe
We humbly ask that everyone please bring your medicines, drums, candles, lighters, wood, lawn chairs, and sleeping bags. Please dress warm. We are asking for singers, dancers, storytellers and drummers. Also donations of water & non perishable foods, flash lights, batteries, etc...
For more information contact the
01/11/2010 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
A Mama Bear in the Woods
Andy Kreamer/PNN Indigenous Peoples Media Project
Friday, January 8, 2010;
“There might be things that you have a hard time doing, but that doesn't mean that its impossible” says Silvia Burley. Silvia is the Chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe and she doesn't just say this in passing- but rather as her Tribe of mostly women and children prepare to lock themselves inside their Tribal Headquarters in Stockton, CA. This is the plan for January 15th, when the Sheriff is coming to forcibly evict them from their land because of foreclosure. Silvia adds: “These people have apparently never seen a mama bear in the woods, because then they would know how a mother is willing to fight and do anything for her child.”
Hoping to stave off the eviction, the California Valley Miwok called for a 2-day protest and speak-out gathering at the Bureau of Indian Affairs recently on January 6th and 7th. The BIA was targeted because they have been withholding funds that the CA Valley Miwok need in order to pay for their land, and also because the BIA could push the California Gambling Control Commission (CGCC) to also release funds due to them. The CA Valley Miwok don't have a casino, so under the Indian Gaming laws they are entitled to revenue that gets taxed off the Tribes that do have casinos.
“The event was a great show of Unity” said Quanah Brightman of the United Native Americans. “9 organizations came together for 2 days to show our support of the California Valley Miwok and also to bring up other issues that we all have with the BIA. Filipinos were there, the Brown Berets, Wounded Knee and the defenders of Glen Cove, several Miwok nations as well as other nations all came because when one of us is attacked, we are all attacked.”
Brightman, Burley, and a lawyer for the CA Valley Miwok were able to get a meeting with Troy Burdick, head of the Central CA BIA because of the commotion caused by the events. They demanded that the BIA tell them the reasons why the money has not been released to the CA Valley Miwok since December 2007. In addition to paying for their land, the money is needed for medical insurance, education, and the welfare of children. The group also brought up some other concerns that they want to BIA to consider and investigate: “In South Dakota the Crow Creek reservation is being sold by the IRS to pay off that Tribe's unpaid taxes- but Native Tribes are like non-profit organizations, we don't have to pay taxes, so why is the IRS involved with a Tribe at all?” questioned Quanah Brightman.
They also pushed the BIA to take a stand to protect Indigenous Sacred Sites, the traditional burial ground in Glen Cove, Vallejo, CA in particular. Finally, they demanded that the BIA grant 'Federally Recognized' status to all Tribes who currently have only 'State Recognized' status, because these people are being denied Federal protection of their human rights and desperately needed services. There are over 500 Tribes that are not Federally Recognized, and 76 in California. Many of these California Tribes need the Federal status so that the remains of their ancestors can be returned to them from anthropology museums across the State, including UC Berkeley and UC Davis.
Burdick didn't have anything to say for himself nor the BIA, and the meeting was interrupted quickly by a staff person interrupting and informing him that he had a 'really important phone call.'
On Thursday afternoon the lawyers for the CA Valley Miwok heard that there have been 2 meetings in Washington D.C., and the matter is being discussed very heatedly. The decisions will be made there by the new BIA director Larry Echohawk instead of in California. This is good news because folks have only gotten the run-around here at the California office of the BIA. Before their meeting with Troy Burdick about the funds from BIA and also the CGCC, Burdick has said that the “BIA doesn't have any authority to tell the CGCC to hold or release your funds because they are a State Agency that we don't have any control over.” This while the CGCC says that they cannot release the money without authorization from the BIA.
The BIA is a federal agency, and their only job is to look out for the welfare of Native Americans. Surely they have the ability to overrule State agencies when a Tribe's livelihood is at stake. Unfortunately, this current run-around is not different from the BIA's actions historically. “Over 1 billion acres have been stolen over the last 500 years by the US cavalry and the BIA,” says Quanah Brightman. Cesar Caballero, Chief of the Shingle Springs Band of Miwok states that “families have been destroyed by children being moved away to BIA boarding schools, and forced relocation policies have broken spiritual connections to land. The few strong people who have survived all this are faced with the BIA providing no roads or utility infrastructure for the small lands that are left, often times leaving us to be shot at by our neighbors who don't want us crossing their land to get to ours.”
He continues, “Our tribes are made up of a lot of war veterans, and we have little education. The genocide that started with the Gold Rush into our Miwok lands is almost complete, but we are still here.” Silvia Burley says: “Us Miwok, we used to live on 10 Counties worth of land, now we are left with only 1.5 acres, and they are trying to foreclose that on us.”
The BIA's choice of doing nothing thus far to stop the eviction of the California Valley Miwok is not just a bureaucratic mistake of overlooking a small tribe while attending to a busy work schedule; it's much deeper than that. The local Central CA agency, and Superintendent Troy Burdick in particular, are corrupt and working with several casino investors and developers in a new tidal wave of colonization that is drowning Indigenous folks all over the Central Valley. Entrepreneur Chadd Everone/Ludwig has been recorded on tape describing the ways that he has been working with this local BIA office and the CGCC to discredit the Tribe and instate impostor leadership. They will then sign casino building deals with multimillionaire Albert D. Seeno Jr. who runs the giant Peppermill Casino chain and 30-40 assorted businesses in the Bay Area. Silvia Burley says that “Seeno was told by the BIA at one point that he couldn't have just one elder sign a deal for a casino.” Check out the audio archive at: http://www.californiavalleymiwoktribe.us/
Chadd Everone/Ludwig has gotten the BIA office to view the Leadership of the Tribe as 'in dispute,' which the BIA is now using as a reason to withhold funds; even though the BIA considered the leadership to be in dispute for years and released funds regularly for years, because the funds go to the Tribe and not the leader anyways. There are now an unknown, and growing number of people with CA Valley Miwok identity cards who have not registered yet with the legitimate Tribe nor the BIA. A group of these people came to the protest on Thursday and were reportedly paid $1000 each by Everone/Ludwig to be there, when they were questioned by a man who went to the protest about whether they wanted to build a casino or not they changed the subject.
“Straight up identity theft of Tribes' names is real, and it's happening” says Cesar Caballero, of a nearby band of Miwok called the Shingle Springs Miwok Tribe. His Tribe's name was stolen in the 1970's and 1980's by some people of Maidu/Hawaiian bloodlines who were living near Sacramento. A bit later they worked with two white guys from Vegas named Kevin M. Kean and Jerry A. Argovitz and the local BIA office to be instated as leaders of the Shingle Springs Miwok Tribe. Kean and Argovitz then arranged for a whole succession of deals to be signed by the Tribal Impostors, ultimately resulting in an agreement between the Tribal Impostors and Lakes Entertainment- a company that has deals with 4 'Tribes' in 4 different States.
“This identity theft issue is huge.” says Cesar Caballero. “I am part of a lawsuit right now, along with 5 other tribes across the United States, who are dealing with our Tribes being infiltrated by outsiders, who then go on to sign deals and build casinos. We filed it with the Supreme Court and they will decide whether or not to hear our whole case on January 15th. The BIA is facilitating this theft to happen, and the original Tribal members are being left out of even the basic healthcare services that we got before we were infiltrated.” You can see the case at: http://www.mklaw.com/mdewakanton.htm
The Original Miwok Tribes are coming together in a consortium, as they are all being similarly infiltrated. It is time to stand with the Miwok Tribes, and all Indigenous Americans, and fight off these attacks by greedy casino developers who seek to use the Tribes' ability to have casinos for their own profit-making. After all, Cesar states, “A typical casino deal looks like this: very publicly 50% of the profit goes to the private investor and 25% gets taken in taxes by the State. Of the remaining 25% only 5 or 6% goes to people in the Tribe, because some has to be used to do repairs on the casino, and a lot goes to the people who signed the deals with the casino company.”
The eviction of the CA Valley Miwok is currently scheduled for January 15th, in Stockton. A temporary restraining order and an injunction have been petitioned for, but not granted.
Silvia Burley pleads: “We are requesting that all people who know what its like to have an injustice done to you and who can remember how it felt for people to walk away without helping, or for those who had been wrongly accused and had to stand alone and fight through the tears and frustration to be ridiculed and finally justified in the end when the truth came out in the open, you are the ones that we are asking to step up and help us.'
'Please send letters, faxes, and or emails to your elected officials, and also leave voice messages regarding how appalled you are about the Bureau of Indian Affairs allowing such abuses to happen to a federally recognized Tribe, for this has gone on (years) too long!!! Do not allow the lies of Chadd Everone and his Gaming Developers (financial backers) to continue to cover up the truth of what they have been doing to destroy us. DEMAND AN IMMEDIATE INVESTIGATION INTO THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF THE LOCAL BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS/CENTRAL CALIFORNIA AGENCY, and SUPERINTENDENT TROY BURDICK, REGARDING HIS WORKING WITH CHADD EVERONE AGAINST OUR TRIBE.
For more information on how to help the Tribe, please contact us at the Tribal office at 209.931.4567 or by fax 209.931.4333
Protest at the John Moss Federal Building
January 6/7th, 2010 - JOHN MOSS FEDERAL BLDG, SACRAMENTO, CA -
This new and much more dire situation has not gone unnoticed by the community. The Tribe now has an abundance of organizations and supporters that came together to host and attend an event that not only addressed the disdain felt by all against Interior officials' ineptness but by their criminality against the California Valley Miwok Tribe and her people. The BIA/DOI has so violated the very existence of this Tribe that now it has come down to the question of violations against the members' very civil rights, but now with all the positive energy flowing, this proud tribal nation's search for Justice shall not be thwarted. Being supported by righteous organizations that fight for the betterment of all the peoples whom they represent and now all coming together for one cause. It is truly a strong and positive period in time in this Tribal people's history. This event is just the beginning and it was enhanced even further by the negative presence of the criminal factions attempt to also be there huddled in a little out of the way corner on the federal buildings grounds.
CVMT Update - Chadd Everone/Ludwig vs the California Valley Miwok Tribe - 12/22/09
The California Valley Miwok Tribe webpage staff, upon learning of the abundance of support generated by a recent release by Chairperson Silvia Burley, decided in an attempt to inform the general population that it would display the release on this site. The December 16th "Please Pass This Forward" release is printed below in its entirety.
To All: PLEASE PASS THIS FORWARD - DECEMBER 16, 2009
12/19/09 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
The California Valley Miwok Tribal Office today recieved written permission from Chelsea Kolander to display on our site an article written by her in "The Collective Voice", the newspaper of the University of California, San Diego. The Tribe thought that as the story of what is really happening is being understood by reporters such as Ms. Kolander, that it would be beneficial to visitors to also see an in-depth and unbiased reporter's point of view, whom has no membership or financial allegiance to either the true California Valley Miwok Tribe or the criminals and distorters of truth Chadd Everone and his legions.
We would like to thank staff writer Chelsea Kolander for permission to display the story from "The Collective Voice", Volume II, Issue I - Nov 2009.
California Valley Miwok Tribe Resists Non-Indian Takeover of Their Land and Culture
Even in 2009 Native Americans are being forced to fight to maintain their land because they could still lose their land at a moment's notice, and this frightening situation is now taking place as the federally recognized California Valley Miwok Tribe (CVMT) is doing everything in their power to preserve their land and their culture. The CVMT has a rich history and culture and are one of the many tribes who first inhabited California. Their lands are located in the Stockton, CA area. As I write this, the members of the CVMT are struggling to maintain their homes and survive as outsiders are threatening their land, culture and sovereignty.
Their sovereignty has been threatened for nearly ten years by a non-Indian named Chadd Everone (formerly known as Chadd Ludwig) and other non-Indian people who are posing as members of the Miwok Tribe. They do this to establish a casino and generate profit. In order to do this they would need to remove the real Miwok people from their land. The CVMT is a non-gaming tribe and wants to remain that way. Chadd Everone and his accomplices have been meeting with the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and have begun the paperwork to remove the legitimate Miwok people from their land and establish a casino. Additionally, they have enrolled themselves as members of the Miwok Tribe to receive health care and other services available to Indian people. Everone has been convinced the former Chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe (CVMT), Yakima Dixie, into supporting the development of a casino. Dixie has been convicted of viciously murdering Lenny Jeff, the great uncle of the current Tribal Chairperson Silvia Burley, in 1978. He has also made multiple death threats to legitimate tribal members including Tribal Chairperson Burley.
The Miwok people are a strong people and they are taking actions to preserve their land and their culture. The Miwok tribe is confronting constant attacks from Everone and his accomplices, the BIA, and even the California Department of the Interior, a legislative body that is supposed to protect and uphold the sovereignty and rights of federally recognized Native American tribes in the United States. The Tribal Chairperson Burley has been advocating for her people. She has travelled all over California and the nation to meet with other tribes and people in positions of power who are able to help the CVMT retain their land. Just before her appearance at the 2009 Students of Color Conference held at UCSD, Burley met with President Obama to voice the concerns of the Miwok tribe. In a recent conversation she stated that "When it comes down to surviving, you do what you have to do."
To help the legitimate Miwok Tribe maintain their land and their culture, you can sign the official UCSD petition started by the UCSD AVP of Local Affairs Aries Yumul at:
Also write to your elected officials at the local, state, and federal level to demand that the Miwok Tribe will be guaranteed the right to remain on their land, to exercise their sovereignty and right to preserve their culture. They are also accepting monetary, clothing and food donations.
For more information, contact Chairperson Burley by phone: 209-931-4567 or email: email@example.com
USDA Food Distribution Continues as Scheduled
The California Valley Miwok Tribe had another successful Food Distribution on July 13th and members from at least four tribes showed up for services this month. It is a shame though that they had to brave sweltering heat and lack of restroom facilities during the distrubtion, due to the premises having to be secured because of Troy Burdick and the local BIA's involvement to assist a takeover of the Tribe by A.D. Seeno, Jr, of Contra Costa - a very corrupt and greedy developer whom finances the illegal activities of Chadd Everone/Ludwig, a non-indian and Velma Whitebear, of Mexican and Portuguese descent, to take this Tribe from its longstanding members and as Chadd Everone states, "build the biggest casino in California right here in the valley". Big it would have to be, just to compensate for the amount of support he has recieved from Mr. Burdick and the local BIA, but individuals such as these have no understanding of the strength of Indian peoples. Many whom showed up for the distribution were upset that the government can do something so wrong and assured the Tribe that if needed, they would brave much hotter days to come back in defense of the Tribe if that time should ever come. For the support of these true Native Americans and all of you that have spread the truth and continue to support the Tribe, we thank you.
~The California Valley Miwok Tribal Council
Mr. Smith/ California Valley Miwok Metaphor
07/05/09 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
Officials within the BIA were enthused to work with the newly-elected Tribal Council, perceiving them to be naive, gullible and probably easily controlled. Those persons working within the BIA, no doubt, were salavating over all of the ways that they could mislead and redirect this Tribe away from achieving the goals which the Tribal Members asked of their Tribal Council to accomplish - but much like the Mr. Smith story - the Chairperson and Tribal Council became quick studies. Even though the Tribe did not quite fully understand sovereignty or all that it entails and to this day, have not been allowed their rights to it under federal law, they knew it was something worth fighting for, even if it was no more than an idea that must be protected.
We do not feel that agents of mortgage companies thought as children, "When I grow up, I want to throw people out of their homes" or that BIA officials thought, "When I grow up, I want to destroy my people, their culture and take from them their sovereignty" or that politicians thought "When I grow up, I want to represent the rich and powerful at the expense of the common man's futures", but all these situations are now upon not only the Tribe, but upon all of the American people.
As the BIA began forcing their will upon the Tribe, the Tribe was advised to seek economic opportunities to prevent financial alienation which could be exacted against them by corrupt beaurocrats, as a means to bring the Tribe to its knees and force it to capitulate to the BIA's incredulous demands, which is exactly what has now happened. Much like the "Mr. Smith.." story, large and well established corporations started seeking favor with the Tribe, promising much and delivering nothing. It soon became apparent that they too looked at this little-known Tribe as a opportunity to be exploited for personal gain. Their true motivations revealed, they disappeared from the scene as quickly as they had appeared.
During all of this, the Tribe has for these many years tried countless times to even secure but one meeting with any of their state or federally elected officials - whom have largely ignored the Tribe and their requests to personally present their case to these persons - but much like the "Mr. Smith.." story, these individuals were elected to office with the help of special interests and corporations; an exclusive club in which the Tribe has no membership.
Now is the time, like the "Mr. Smith.." story, that someone, somewhere with the power or influence to right all the years of wrongdoing against this Tribe, needs to find the courage to harken back to their own upbringing, when their parents taught them the importance of ethics and morality; things that in the field of government/politics and business, in a modern society, are often convoluted, lost or forgotten altogether. Sometimes we as people should do the right thing - not because it is easier, not for personal gain and not even for notoriety or personal glory, but simply because it is the right thing to do.
This is why our country is currently in such dire straights financially, legally and politically, because those in charge of our institutions choose to ignore their moral and ethical obligations to those whom they are supposed to represent.
Doing the right thing is never the easiest, but is always the simplest thing to do. It only gets complicated when people personally try to confuse a very simple situation to be able to do the wrong thing and then try to get away with it.
CVMT To Continue USDA Food Distribution Program
06/26/09 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
We can only hope that these sites will someday be seen by President Obama himself, so that he may see that this tribe is a community organizer, focused on assisting in the betterment of our peoples, much like the nation's President stated he was, as a platform in his quest for the presidency.
NOTICE: Updated Information Available in Everone/Ludwig & the DOI Section
06/23/09 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
BREAKING NEWS: Justice for the California Valley Miwok Tribe Petition
06/18/09 - CVMT TRIBAL OFFICE, STOCKTON, CA -
Chairperson Burley Interviewed on KKUP 91.5 FM "Indian Time" Program
02/17/09 - KKUP 91.5 FM, SANTA CLARA, CA -
For more information about this radio program, visit "Indian Time" with Jack Hyatt and David Romero on MySpace.
California Valley Miwok Tribe's Chairperson Speaks with Native Voice TV
01/26/09 - NATIVE VOICE TV, SAN JOSE, CA -
Cihuapilli Rose Amador first appeared on the air waves with Native Voice TV in March of 2004. Native Voice TV is a highly informative talk show with knowledgable and sometimes well known guests from across the USA, whom discuss topics of concern for indigenous peoples, along with community and civic-minded interaction. Updates on activities and current events are also a staple of the show.
Along with the above mentioned topics at both the radio station and the television interviews, the discussions centered around a current event that can only be listed on this website, because when the full truth of what this website comprises of was originally listed on the Tribe's official government website, Scott Keep - Senior Solicitor of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior - in a vain attempt to silence the voice of truth, orchestrated an attempt to either dissolve the official tribal site or at the very least, have it censored in an effort to still the Tribe's voice from exposing his nefarious activities and those of his inner circle; as well as corruption within the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and illegal actions being perpetrated against the Tribe by Troy Burdick, Superintendent of the Central California Agency Bureau of Indian Affairs (CCA/BIA) in conjunction with Keep. Mr. Keep has worked with a ficticious group of non-indians being led by Chadd Everone/Ludwig (this is Mr. Everone's third group - two previous groups failed). Mr. Everone's real last name was Ludwig, but he legally changed it in 1980. He is known to plagiarize other people's medical information for his personal use and refers to himself as "Dr.Internet".
Mr. Everone/Ludwig has even initiated a phoney tribal membership identification card that he offered for $5.00 at a recent meeting. To anyone with $5, you could now be a member. His membership drive escalated at this point ($5 for federal recognition, who wouldn't buy in at that price?) and this ficticious group, with their fake identification cards, are now accessing and overloading all kinds of local services, depriving the local indian tribes in the area from receiving direly needed benefits.
The story of the California Valley Miwok Tribe
Off in the distance rolling thunderclouds are rapidly approaching. We warn others of the immediate danger but they don’t take notice, they are deaf to our words. We yell louder of the approaching storm that is closing in, vastly approaching, to engulf us all. We yell till our voices go quiet. My body is weak, but I gather up what strength I can to face the wind.
As the storm grows in size, my soul shudders with fear, the end is never as one expects it to be. Tears flood forward stinging my eyes like the heat of the lightening. The ground shakes, the wind blows, I find myself standing alone. Memories flash through my mind so fast that I can barely decipher them through the flashes of the lightening that is zigzagging across the sky.
The music, I can hear the music of the old hand-game songs. I can see the rows of teams, the showing of the hand-game bones, the old songs pound louder and louder causing the rhythm of my heart to beat with the song. I become one with the music, my body becomes part of the song. I look with pride at my Grandfather for he is so crafty at the game and such a powerful singer. My Grandmother smiles and laughs as the hands are now stretched out, its time to choose, which hand hold the bones and which is empty? OHHHHH!!! HA HA HA HA HA!!!!! You loose, the hand is empty! The winning team keeps the stick and the bones are hidden again. The song becomes more intense.
BOOM!!!!! More thunder. The storm is menacing. Darkness falls. The wind howls and lightening pierces the awesome picture that is developing in front of me. The music re-enters my mind, the hand-game. Our ancestors would know what to do. Think! Think! Although they have passed over, they are still near. They comfort us in sorrow and in fear. Please Grandmother and Grandfather hear me now. The storm is upon us and I am standing alone with nowhere safe to go.
I’m facing my worst fears by standing here looking straight into the eye of the storm. How does such a storm happen one may ask?
The storm started with two people getting together to find an investment and when Prop 1-A passed in California, the media started reporting how Indian Tribes can make a lot of money by now being given an opportunity to own Vegas styled casinos to create revenue to improve the lives of their people. The two individuals (non-Indian) in this particular storm approached one of our tribal members and signed a casino deal (unbeknownst to the Tribe), and when they did their due diligence, they found out that the individual tribal member possessed no official
authority to sign any contracts and/or agreements on behalf of the Tribe. Instead of letting the matter go and/or approaching the Tribe, these two individuals hired another non-Indian from Berkeley, California to create havoc in order to destroy the rightful tribal members and legitimate Tribe.
The storm begins to take shape, for now an ill wind begins to blow onward towards the California Valley Miwok Tribe. The Tribe tells others that a storm is approaching and what is causing it, but others are too busy with their own lives and their own problems, they do not believe that such a storm would overtake them as it is about to hit the California Valley Miwok Tribe head on.
The Updrafts and the Downdrafts
Because the updraft and the downdraft have been able to freely interfere into our internal tribal affairs, the total destruction of our Tribe is what is being allowed to take place. The message is, this is not a one-time phenomenon. If we are left to stand alone, to fight this storm, the storm will rise again to devour more Tribes and innocent tribal members.
We are in possession of Bureau archival letters by officials, of which our Tribe has been determined to have-never been terminated, so we are not a Tillie Hardwick tribe. We have always been a small tribe. We officially organized in 1998, ratified our tribal constitution on March 6, 2000, have policies, procedures, ordinances, resolutions, a financial management system, etc...
We have continued to successfully pass our annual federal audits without ever having even one finding, yet the greedy developer “group” and the one local Bureau official have managed to work together to stop our RSTF monies and our PL-93 Mature Status 638 Contract. Now that they have strangled our Tribe financially, they are going to unilaterally try to force a re-organization upon our tribe.
The phony group submitted their phony Miwok lineage/ancestry and forwarded it to the Bureau, and without giving due process, the local Bureau official and a couple of his official friends in DOI will finally destroy what is left of us. We have no resources to fight for our rights or our sovereignty. The lies that are being told are too overwhelming since they have the backing of a casino owner to finance them to steal our tribe. Their so-called chief is as we speak, serving a three-year sentence in Folsom Prison, California.
OHHHHH!!!! HA HA HA HA HA HA !!!!!!!
Do you not see the storm? Hear the thunder or see the flashes of lightening?
The storm engulfs us. We pray for courage and strength to make it through the storm alive. I am asking that if you cannot see the storm, then please listen. HELP US!!
Help us find shelter for the storm is taking everything we own. All we have left is our very lives, our memories, the injustices and the Indian blood that which pumps through our veins.
Remember, the storm dissipates from the bottom up and the updraft is what caused this storm to begin. We must stop the updraft and the downdraft will stop itself.
Please Grandmothers, Grandfathers, Brothers, Sisters; Cousins, Mothers, and Fathers, we need your assistance. Our Tribe has been here for centuries but can easily disappear in the blink of an eye. And what will be left is just an image pretending to be real. The individuals who will steal our image will be soulless, no true Miwok blood, no true history or ancestry. The phony group will have disgraced our people who have passed over to the spirit world. Our culture, traditions, memories and stories forever lost. Our Tribe is seeking shelter from this storm and is pleading for those of you who have heart, to please not turn away. Please don’t close your ears to our sobs or our pain, for once we are gone, we may never cross this path again.
Story written by
Silvia Burley, Chairperson
© May 28, 2008
California Valley Miwok Tribe.Us
Generally this site is dedicated to the exposure of government corruption and the malicious and illegal activity of CCA BIA Superintendant Troy Burdick’s illicit relationship with Chadd Everone/Ludwig and his financial backer Albert Seeno, Jr. Even if these individuals are allowed to succeed by the very system that is supposed to prevent these kinds of intrusions into tribal sovereignty, this site shall continue to update and inform the public. The Tribe will never cease to exercise its 1st Amendment rights and dedicates this byline to the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma, Miccosukee Tribe of Florida, Quinault Tribe of Washington State and the Sac & Fox Nation of Missouri, all of whom recently have given their support to allow the Tribe to bring forth a new and competent legal team with the goal of finally putting to rest the fabricated stories of Chadd Everone/Ludwig and still the dark desires of Albert Seeno, Jr., and Troy Burdick.
To these four tribes that truly understand and have come to our aid in writing and in funding, our people thank you for supporting tribal sovereignty.
The Nevada Connection
To further demonstrate the lack of ethical and moral behavior in the business affairs of Mr. Albert Seeno, Jr., a Nevada casino owner, home builder (Seeno Homes) and current developer/financial backer of the fraudulent group seeking to overthrow the legitimate Tribal Council, the Tribe has now added two published articles illustrating Seeno’s previous criminal activities. Also, in violation of book #25 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR 25), under the National Indian Gaming Commission Regulations, is his contract with Mr. Yakima Dixie, which discloses the direct intent to forcibly take control of the tribal government, in which he would then make cash payments directly to his co-conspirators upon the successful execution of their illegal agenda.
The Ficticious Argument of Tribal Leadership
The argument that Troy Burdick, Superintendent of the BIA’s Central California Agency, is using in his attempt to decimate the legitimacy of the Tribe by enrolling random people of his own choosing, is that there is a leadership dispute within the Tribe. All other arguments aside, the Tribe retains detailed records of Yakima Dixie’s own signed resignation of Chairmanship, personal voting history and subsequent 4-6 months worth of Tribal documents which he signed as Vice Chairperson, before he was intercepted and manipulated to enter into an unlawful scheme by Everone/Ludwig and his group.
If this were not enough to still the argument that Mr. Troy Burdick, Chadd Everone/Ludwig and Mr. A.D. Seeno are trying to use to illegally steal the Tribe from its recognized members, the very fact that Mr. Dixie, aged 68 years, is currently serving a three year sentence in California State Prison in Folsom, California, should be enough for any reasonably intelligent, law-abiding citizen to accept that the question of leadership for all practical purposes should be over.
Mr. Burdick, it is time to stop this ridiculousness and acknowledge the facts, even though they are to your personal disliking.
The California Valley Miwok Tribe presents these informative videos detailing the dire situation that the Tribe is experiencing due to the actions of Troy Burdick, Superintendent of the Bureau of Indian Affairs-Central California Agency, A.D. Seeno, a greedy Nevada casino developer and Chadd Everone/Ludwig, an opportunist hoping to capitalize on the situation for his personal gain.
The Fight to Survive
The local Bureau of Indian Affairs office has been influenced by a group that intends to take over the Tribe in order to conduct casino gaming under the Tribe’s name. The Tribe is fighting to protect our tribal sovereignty to determine our membership and elect our own leadership.
For several years, the California Valley Miwok Tribe has successfully fought off the efforts of Chadd Everone, a.k.a. Chadd Ludwig, and his associates who are trying to take over the Tribe.
In addition to taking over the Tribe, Everone and his associates are seeking to take the Tribe’s share of the Revenue Sharing Trust Fund. Through the influence of two former California Gambling Control Commission employees, Peter Melincoe and Arlo Smith, Everone and his associates have successfully halted the disbursement of the Tribe’s RSTF money. Everone sought investors in his scheme by pledging the Tribe’s Revenue Sharing Trust Fund money.
Everone and his associates have managed to convince the BIA that there is a large group of “putative members” of the Tribe that deserve to be enrolled into the Tribe. This is a fabrication that the Tribe is trying to dispel.
Casino Gaming is the Goal of Usurpers
Everone and company convinced Yakima Dixie, after signing a “development contract” with him, to assert that he never resigned his leadership position in the Tribe. In emails from Everone to a potential investor in his scheme, Everone revealed that he and his associates have plans to establish an Indian casino in California. Before they can have an Indian casino, they need an Indian Tribe. Their plan to take over the small California Valley Miwok Tribe hinged on Yakima.
Based on the evidence, the Tribe believes that Everone and his associates are preying on the instability and simplicity of Yakima Dixie, the former leader of the Tribe, who resigned his office as Chairperson in 1998 of his own accord, concerned that his extensive criminal record would interfere with the Tribe’s plan for engaging a development partner for gaming. Until 1998, Yakima was the only member of the Tribe. Yakima spent most of his adult life in jail or prison for various crimes and was not willing to continue as Chairperson of the Tribe. Given Yakima’s low level of education, his life spent behind bars and his battle with alcoholism, he was easy prey for Everone and his associates.
According to historical BIA records, the California Valley Miwok Tribe, formerly known as Sheep Ranch Rancheria, was comprised of just one individual when the BIA conducted a survey in 1935 for purposes of a tribal election under the Indian Reorganization Act. Again in 1966, the BIA counted only one member who was eligible to vote for termination of the Tribe. In 1998, the BIA recognized that the
Tribe’s only member was Yakima Dixie until he enrolled five other relatives, including the Tribe’s current Chairperson.
On September 24, 1998, the BIA acknowledged that Silvia Burley, Rashel Reznor, Anjelica Paulk, Tristian Wallace, Yakima Dixie, and Melvin Dixie were the only members of the Tribe and that they possessed the right to organize a government for the California Valley Miwok Tribe. With the assistance of the BIA in 1998, a majority of the adult members of the Tribe, including Yakima, voted to adopt a “General Council” form of government. This is memorialized by Resolution # GC-98-01, which was drafted by BIA staff and adopted by the members. A general council form of government consists of all adult members of the Tribe and decisions are made by a simple majority.
On September 17, 1999, a simple majority of the General Council voted to approve a resolution to establish a Tribal Council and to hold elections for tribal leadership positions (See General Council Resolution R-1-9/17/99). The majority of adult members voted for Silvia Burley as the Chairperson of the Tribe, Yakima Dixie as the Vice-Chairperson and Rashel Reznor as the Secretary/Treasurer of the Tribe (See T.C. #99-010 and General Council Resolution R-9-/17/99). The Tribe, through its elected tribal leaders, then promulgated tribal laws for governing the Tribe, including a permanent election ordinance. It was this election ordinance under which Silvia Burley was elected Chairperson of the Tribe for a six-year term ending in 2006 by a majority of the adult tribal members. In 2006, she was re-elected to another six year term.
Shortly after the election and after signing a development contract with Yakima, Everone convinced Yakima to attempt to rescind his resignation as the Tribe’s Chairperson (apparently Everone did not know about Yakima’s election to Vice-Chairperson). However, the BIA acknowledged the election results and for a time addressed Yakima as the Tribe’s Vice-Chairperson. When Yakima persisted in his complaint, the Tribal Council voted to provide due process by allowing Yakima an opportunity to pursue his grievance before the Council. He never took the opportunity (R-2-3-16-2000).
Everone encouraged Yakima to take his complaint to the BIA. However, on February 4, 2000, the BIA notified Yakima Dixie that his allegations involved an internal tribal matter and should be handled by the Tribe. On March 16, 2000, the Tribal Council passed resolution R-2-3-16-2000, which resolved that pursuant to resolution R-2-10-9-1999 (Interim Operations Authorities and Rights for the CVMT), Yakima Dixie failed to pursue his right to contest his resignation from the office of Chairman by failing to respond to the Tribal Council within the prescribed 30-day period.
When Yakima continued to complain however, the Tribal Council relented and voted to hire a tribal judge – an experienced Indian law attorney, to hear the evidence and decide the matter. Yakima was represented by several attorneys who submitted briefs and a large number of documents to support the claim that Yakima did not resign. After submission of briefs and documents by the Tribal Council, the judge scheduled a hearing. When Yakima informed the tribal court that he would not attend the hearing, the judge chose to decide the case on the written record. The judge reviewed all the evidence and in March 2004, determined that it showed Yakima had voluntarily resigned, voted in the tribal elections that followed and voluntarily participated in the Tribe’s government as the Vice-Chairperson of the Council after the election. That written decision was forwarded to the BIA. The BIA refused to give the tribal court’s decision any credence and thus has allowed the appearance of a conflict in the Tribe’s leadership to fester, despite the Tribe’s internal resolution of this issue.
As far as the Tribe can determine, when Everone and his associates failed to destabilize the Tribe by asserting Yakima’s leadership, they launched a new effort to take over the Tribe through sheer numbers. Everone and his associates have succeeded in convincing the Superintendent of the BIA’s Central California Agency, Troy Burdick, that there is a large group of Miwoks who are “putative” members of the Tribe but who are being kept out of the Tribe. This is untrue. The Tribe has always been very small.
In litigation in 2000, the Tribe’s former attorney mentioned in passing a potential Miwok pool of applicants of 250 members. The estimate of the number of Miwoks included all of the un-enrolled Indians who claim Miwok ancestry, but does not distinguish from which of the fourteen Miwok tribes in the state of California that those individuals are descended. Of the fourteen Miwok tribes in California, eight are federally recognized; including Jackson Rancheria, Chicken Ranch Rancheria, Buena Vista Rancheria, California Valley Miwok Tribe, Tuolumne Rancheria, Ione Band of Miwok Indians, Shingle Springs Rancheria and the United Auburn Indian Community (Miwok/Maidu). The remaining six tribes are not federally recognized—Wilton Miwok Rancheria, American Indian Council of Mariposa, Calaveras Band of Me-Wuk Indians, Calaveras County Mountain Miwok, the Sierra Native American Council and Eldorado Miwok Indians.
The estimated 250 Miwok Indians could be descended from any one of the fourteen tribes, not just the California Valley Miwok Tribe. However, the Central California Superintendent, Burdick, has now begun a process to “include the greater tribal community” in the Tribe and has compiled a long list of applicants that the BIA intends to enroll into the Tribe under BIA criteria for membership. The BIA has vastly broadened the criteria for membership to include descent from a number of Indians, though in 1935, 1966 and 1998 the BIA recognized only one member. The BIA, on Burdick’s direction, has published a notice asserting these individuals have a right to be enrolled into the tribe under criteria set by the BIA and to then “reorganize” the Tribe’s government.
The Tribe appealed the BIA’s actions to the Interior Board of Indian Appeals and to the federal district court in Washington, D.C. When the Tribe filed its appeal, BIA’s regulations (25 C.F.R. § 2.6) require the Bureau to halt any action based on the decision being appealed. However, BIA is plowing ahead with its “reorganization” of the Tribe and ignoring its own regulations.
During this entire time period from 1999 to the present, Chairperson Silvia Burley has been the signatory to a mature status 638 contract (No. CT J51T62802) with the BIA, where she signed no fewer than twenty-four different contract modifications with the BIA, the most recent signed on September 19, 2007. Because the contract is a Mature Status contract, the BIA cannot cancel it without cause. The Tribe has been very conscientious in fulfilling its contractual obligations, keeping good records and passing the required audits.
The existence of the 638 contract (under the Indian Self Determination and Education Assistance Act, “ISDEA”) between the BIA and the Tribe is crucial in determining tribal leadership because by federal law, the United States, through the BIA, may only enter into such contracts with either a tribal government or a tribal entity authorized by that tribal government. In the case of the California Valley Miwok Tribe, that tribal government has been lead by Silvia Burley.
The Tribe’s responsibilities under its 638 Contract with the BIA have been to develop and strengthen the tribal organization. By agreement between the parties, the Tribal Council has promulgated tribal resolutions since 1999 in compliance with ISDEA, 25 U.S.C § 450f(a)(1).1 The Secretary of the Interior, through the BIA, has relied upon the efficacy of these tribal resolutions each year since 1999, to renew the Tribe’s 638 Contract. By accepting these resolutions, the BIA has recognized the California Valley Miwok Tribe’s Tribal Council, including its signatory and Chairperson, Silvia Burley, as the tribal organization with whom they have entered the ISDEA Contract and with whom it maintains a government-to-government relationship.
Acceptance of those resolutions also affirms BIA’s knowledge that the California Valley Miwok Tribe’s Tribal Council has the authority to enter into such contracts in the name of the Tribe, issue resolutions relating to those contracts and serve as the tribal organization pursuant to section 450f(a)(1) the ISDEA.2
The BIA has acknowledged the Tribe’s government in litigation in which the BIA is defending its contract with the Tribe before the Department’s Indian Appeals Board. Chadd Everone appealed the BIA’s distribution of the FY 2006 638 contract funds to the Tribe (See Everone v. Pacific Regional Director, Docket No. IBIA 06-70-A). The BIA responded to Everone’s challenge on January 26, 2007, wherein the BIA states that the Pacific Regional Director properly reversed Superintendent Burdick’s finding that the California Valley Miwok Tribe did not have an “organized government.” (Id. at 1). The BIA seeks to dismiss Everone’s challenge to the 638 contract and in so doing, states that “ISD[E]A contracts are between the United States government and tribal governments. It is a government-to-government relationship. Because the appellants [Chadd Everone and associates] do not constitute the tribal government they do not have a legally protected interest in the ISD[E]A contract.” The Bureau of Indian Affairs acknowledged in its pleadings before the Interior Board of Indian Affairs, that Silvia Burley is a “person of authority” within the Tribe with whom the BIA conducts its government-to government relationship.
The Tribe, under the signature of Silvia Burley, has again submitted its contract to the BIA on October 1, 2007 and has again received its most recent quarterly distribution from the BIA pursuant to the contract. During the entire time in question, Silvia Burley has continued to conduct the business of the Tribe and to receive and act on official correspondence from the federal government (including the BIA), the California state government and other tribal governments.3
The California Valley Miwok Tribe is Formally Organized
From July 12, 2000 through November 2, 2004, the BIA’s official correspondence to the Tribe recognized Silvia Burley as Chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe. During that time, on November 24, 2003, the BIA released a recognition letter acknowledging that the BIA maintains a government-to-government relationship with the Tribe through the Tribal Council chaired by Silvia Burley. In February 2004, both the Superintendent of the Central California Agency of the BIA – Dale Risling and Raymond Fry, the Tribal Operations Officer, testified under oath that the BIA recognized Silvia Burley as the Tribe’s Chairperson and that the BIA had recognized her as such since at least 1999 (California Valley Miwok Tribe v. United States of America, et al., 02-CV-00912-FCD/GGH)(Eastern District of California 2004)(depositions of Risling and Fry, on file with the Tribe). Sometime between August 17, 2004 and November 2, 2004, the BIA changed its designation of Silvia Burley from Chairperson to “Spokesperson”, with no explanation as to the authority or legal basis for the change.
BIA Interference with Tribal Sovereignty
Superintendent Burdick is aggressively trying to enlarge the Tribe’s membership based on the BIA’s own criteria of who should be a member of the Tribe. The Tribe appealed Burdick’s actions, which resulted in an automatic stay of BIA actions under Interior’s appeal regulations. However, BIA has ignored its own regulations and is pursuing this effort. After the Tribe filed its appeal, the BIA invited people to apply to the BIA for membership into the Tribe. The Tribe believes that the BIA received 486 applications to date for membership into this small Tribe. Superintendent Burdick informed the Tribe that the BIA will permit the applicants to “organize” the Tribe.
The Tribe has been fighting a running legal battle with the BIA over these issues of inherent tribal sovereignty. However, without access to the RSTF money, the Tribe will not be able to retain its attorneys and will be forced to give up the battle and possibly close its offices. The Tribe has obtained evidence that the local BIA has encouraged Everone and his associates to submit a 638 contract with the BIA to compete with the Tribe’s own existing contract (See attached email from Everone).
Because the California Valley Miwok Tribe has opposed the local BIA’s efforts to take over the Tribe, the BIA has asserted that the Tribe is not an organized tribe. In Indian country, this simply signifies a tribe that has chosen not to organize under the Indian Reorganization Act. Other “unorganized” tribes include the Navajo Nation, the Oneida Nation of New York, the Mooretown Rancheria, the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma and many others. However, Superintendent Burdick and others at the BIA are using this term to confuse the uninformed—including the California Gambling Control Commission.
The Website of the California Nations Indian Gaming Association acknowledges that tribal sovereignty is exercised by Indian nations in efforts to fulfill basic governmental obligations, including providing for the general welfare of its members, developing economies within its jurisdiction and creating the governmental institutions by which local control and input are the foundation for tribal community prosperity.
These inherent sovereign powers of a tribe – determining its own membership and electing its own leaders – are under direct attack by the BIA. The BIA’s efforts to usurp the inherent governmental functions of a sovereign tribe should be alarming to every tribe.
The BIA continues to distribute money to the California Valley Miwok Tribe through its tribal leader, Chairperson Silvia Burley. The most recent payment was made in October, 2007. The contract, signed by Silvia Burley on behalf of the Tribe, is an agreement between the BIA and the Tribe, for the Tribe to provide governmental services to the tribal population, including enrollment and development of governing documents. That contract is currently in effect and will continue to be in effect for the foreseeable future because it is a mature status contract.
1 Further guidance as to the necessity of a tribal resolution is offered under the Department of the Interior’s ISDEA regulations at 25 C.F.R. Section 900.3 (a) (8) which states that: “Congress has declared that all self-determination contract proposals must be supported by the resolution of an Indian tribe(s).”
2 The Supreme Court in Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma v. Leavitt, 543 U.S. 631 (2005) found that ISDEA contracts are no different than regular government procurement contracts and that the Federal government is bound by the terms of those agreements and the ISDEA.
3 Official correspondence to the Tribe, recognizing Silvia Burley as the Chairperson has been received from federal agencies including the Department of Interior’s Associate Deputy Secretary of the Interior, the Office of the Solicitor and the Bureau of Land Management in Washington, D.C., from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Health and Human Services, the California Division of the Department of Transportation, the Internal Revenue Service, the Indian Health Service, the Census Bureau in the Department of Commerce, the Greenville Rancheria NAGPRA Cultural Specialist, the California Tribal Business Alliance, the California Nations Indian Gaming Association, the National Indian Child Welfare Association, the California Gambling Control Commission, the California Resources Agency and others. Documents available upon request.