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BIA has no Web site

It’s true! The Bureau of Indian Affairs Web site and mail servers have been “made temporarily unavailable due to the Cobell Litigation. Please continue to check from time to time. We have no estimate on when authorization will be given to reactivate these sites.” According to “Interior Monologue,” by Meghann Farnsworth in the September/October 2005 Issue of Mother Jones, the employees of BIA have had no web access and no email. A Judge revoked the agency’s internet privileges in response to the agency’s gross mismanagement of Indian land trust records and funds.

The BIA has been stuck in this techno-logical time warp since 2001, when the federal judge overseeing Cobell v. Norton punished the bureau for failing to safeguard its Indian land trust records. Court-appointed experts had hacked into the bureau’s files, concluding that “protecting trust funds is not now, and has never been, a ‘priority.'” In response, U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth revoked the BIA’s Internet privileges until it cleaned up its act.

CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

1 Comment

  1. For those of us who are interested (and may not have been following the ups and downs of Interior sites due to the litigation) the named plaintiff, Eloise Cobell will speak at a program on the Trust Fund litigation in July of 2006 at the AALL Annual Meeting and Conference in St. Louis, MO.

    Tapes will be available for purchase after the conference, or check your local law library (especially law school libraries) as many purchase the tapes for addition to the collection.

    (The Mother Jones article mentioned is also a good source for the history of the litigation.)

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