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Sault Tribe Offices and Health Centers will be closed for Thanksgiving, Nov. 23 and 24, 2017. Have a happy holiday season.

Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Anishnaabek Community and Family Services direct assistance programs has office hours at these sites:

Hessel Community Center, 3355 N 3 Mile Road, Hessel, Mich. Phone 484-2727
Every other Thursday, beginning with the first Thursday of the month
Hours vary
Call Angie Gillmore, 643-8689

Escanaba Health Clinic at the Penstar Office Building, 1401 N. 26th Street, Suite 105, Escanaba, Mich. Phone 786-2636
Every Thursday from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Call Viola Neadow, 341-8469

Marquette Community Health Center, 1229 Washington Street, Marquette, Mich. Phone 225-1616
Second Monday of each month from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. closed for lunch
Call Heidi Cotey, 387-4721

Assistance is available from Emergency Assistance, Native Employment Works, Child Care Development Fund, General Assistance and Homeless Prevention Services. Contact worker for an appointment. Walk-ins accepted.

WASHINGTON – The Department of the Interior announced today it is taking the final steps in its efforts to identify the whereabouts of approximately 17,000 Native Americans to provide compensation as part of the Cobell settlement. The settlement of the Cobell lawsuit has reached an important deadline and the Department needs Class Members, or the heirs of Class Members, to provide documentation of their status to the Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians (OST) and/or the Garden City Group (GCG), the Cobell claims administrator, by November 27, 2017, which is a court-imposed deadline for claiming settlement compensation so that payment may be made.

In 1996, Elouise Cobell, a member of the Blackfeet Tribe, and four other Native American representatives filed a class-action lawsuit against two departments of the United States government: the Department of the Interior and the Department of the Treasury. The plaintiffs claimed that the government had incorrectly accounted for income derived from Indian trust assets, which are legally owned by the U.S. government but held in trust for individual Native Americans (the beneficial owners).

In 2009, the parties to the suit negotiated a settlement in the case, and in 2010 Congress passed implementing legislation designating $3.4 billion for the settlement: $1.4 billion was allocated to be paid to the plaintiffs and $1.9 billion was allocated for a Land Buy-Back Program and a newly created educational scholarship fund for American Indian and Alaska Native students.

The settlement payment process is being handled by the GCG with the cooperation of the Interior Department. Class members all over the country have received detailed information about their legal rights and options via the United States Postal Service. Information was also provided through an extensive media campaign which included Native America print media, social media, television and radio ads, and online advertising.

The bulk of the settlement monies have already been paid to individual Indians. Despite extensive efforts to contact all potential claimants, there still remain several thousand Individual Indian Money (IIM) account holders who are classified as “whereabouts unknown" (WAU).

These WAU accounts total millions of dollars in potential settlement payments. The Department has been making extensive efforts to reach these WAU account holders so that they or their heirs can submit their documentation before the November 27 deadline expires.

Class Members or the heirs of Class Members should provide documentation immediately to the GCG by calling 1-800-961-6109, by emailing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or by U.S. mail to Indian Trust Settlement, P.O. Box 9577, Dublin, OH 43017-4877. Class members can also search OST’s Whereabouts Unknown database. If you have any questions about the OST Whereabouts Unknown Cobell list, please call the Indian Trust Beneficiary Call Center at 1-888-678-6836.

Unit 1:
Sault Ste. Marie:
Big Bear Arena (Ages 0-12)
Dec. 16, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Contact: Jill Lawson

Kinross Recreation Center
Dec. 2, 1 p.m.
Contact: DeeDee Frasure

Unit 2:
DeTour Township Hall
Dec. 8, 4 p.m.-6 p.m.
Contact: Lisa Burnside

Hessel Tribal Center
Dec. 9, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Contact: Lisa Burnside

Luce County Community Action Bldg.
Dec. 15, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Contact Lois Bryant

(VFW) Veteran’s Hall – Engadine
Dec. 9, 12 p.m.-2 p.m.
Contact: Annette Clark

Unit 3:
St. Ignace
Kewadin Shores Event Center
Dec. 10, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Keith Massaway, 906-643-6981
Bridgett Sorenson, 906-430-0536

Unit 4:
Manistique Tribal Center
Dec. 15, 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Viola Neadow, 906-341-8469 or ext. 29516
Denise Chase, 906-203-2471
Darcy Morrow, 906-298-1888

Escanaba Civic Center, 225 N. 21 Street
Dec. 16, 12 p.m.-3 p.m.
Viola Neadow, 906-341-8469 ext. 29516
Denise Chase, 906-203-2471
Darcy Morrow, 906-298-1888

Unit 5 & Unit 4:
NMU – Student Library
Dec. 17, 1 p.m.-4 p.m. (ages 0-12)
Contact: Boyd Snyder
906-360-9572 or 1-866-279-8323

Munising Tribal Center
Dec. 2, 1 p.m.-3 p.m.
Contact: Anita Nelson

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. — A regular meeting of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Board of Directors takes place at the Hessel Tribal Center starting at 6 p.m. on Nov. 21. The meeting is preceded by a hearing of matters raised by members from 4 to 6 p.m.

Resolutions on the agenda are budgetary items: Breast and Cervical Cancer Control, HC Medical Nursing/Third Party, HC Dental/Third Party and Road to Wellness Grant; Am. Ch. 71: Criminal Offenses and Election Ordinance –Constitutional Provisions.

Under new business, the board considers a relinquishment, committee request, elders subcommittees, status of Great Lakes Emergency Order, voter registration mailing, key employee and board concerns.

November 21 Meeting Resolutions


Keith Smith will be holding Traditional Medicine Clinic hours:

December 4, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 20
Sault Ste. Marie
Peggy Holappa 632-0220

December 5

December 19

For Traditional Medicine Program information, please call 906-632-0220 or 632-5210.

© 2017 - Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. All Rights Reserved.

Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY