We the people of the Fort Independence Reservation, in order to form a better community government exercise rights and responsibilities and promote the welfare of the people, do hereby adopt the following Articles of Association.
The jurisdiction of this organization shall extend to the land now and hereafter comprised within the Fort Independence Reservation.
Section 1. The membership of the Fort Independence Community shall consist of:
A. All Fort Independence allottees who are living on he date of the adoption of these Articles of Association.
B. All living blood line descendants of Fort Independence allottees, regardless of whether the allottees are living or deceased, provided such descendants possess at least 1/16 degree Indian blood.
Section 2. A person, or his descendants, who has been allotted on another reservation or is officially enrolled with or is a recognized member of some other tribe or band shall not be enrolled. A "recognized member of another tribe or band" is a person whose name is listed on the census roll of another tribe or band, or has received a land use assignment on another reservation.
Section 3. The official membership roll shall be prepared in accordance with an ordinance adopted by the general council and approved by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs or his authorized representative. Such ordinance shall contain provisions for enrollment procedures, enrollment committee, application form, approval or disapproval of application, rejection notice, appeals, and provisions for keeping the roll on a current basis.
Section 1. The governing body of the Community shall be the General Council which shall consist of all members twenty-one (21) years of age or older. Each adult member of the General Council is also a qualified voter.
Section 2. The General Council shall elect from its membership, by secret ballot, a Chairman, a Vice-Chairman and a Secretary-Treasurer who shall constitute a Business Committee which is empowered to represent the Community in all negotiations with local. State, and Federal governments or agencies provided that the Business Committee shall not commit the Community in any contract lease or other arrangements unless specifically authorized by resolution of the General Council.
Section 3. The first election of officers shall be held at the January meeting of the General Council following the approval of these Articles of Association by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. Thereafter, terms of office shall be for two years or until successors are elected. Any member, twenty-one (21) years of age or older, shall, if duly nominated and elected, have the right to hold office.
Nominations shall be from the floor at a General Council meeting held specifically for that purpose at least thirty (30) days before the election. The officers elected at the election preceding the approval of these Articles of Association shall remain in office until the next election.
Section 4. The candidates receiving the highest number of votes for their respective offices shall be declared elected.
Section 5. All elections, whether for office or referendum, shall be conducted in accordance with an ordinance, or ordinances, adopted by the General Council which shall provide for the dates thereof, the polling places, election committees and their duties, absentee balloting and such other procedures as are deemed necessary to provide a democratic election.
Section 6. Meetings of the General Council shall be held on the first Wednesday of each month. Special meetings may be called at any time by the Chairman or a majority of the members.
Section 7. Seven of the qualified voters shall constitute a quorum and no business shall be conducted in the absence of a quorum.
Section 1. If an officer shall die, resign, or be recalled from his office or found guilty of a felony in any State or Federal Court, the office shall be automatically vacated.
Section 2. Upon receipt of a petition signed by thirty percent (30%) of the qualified voters requesting the recall of an officer, the Business Committee shall call a special election within thirty (30) days. The accused official shall be given a written statement of all charges filed against him at lest ten (10) days before such election at which he is to appear and he shall be given a fair opportunity to answer any and all written charges. A majority of those voting in such recall election shall govern, provided that at 50 percent of the eligible voters shall vote in the election.
Section 3. Any office which was vacated shall be filled by the General Council at its next meeting and such replacement shall serve the unexplored term of office.
Section 1. The General Council shall have the powers and responsibilities hereinafter provided, subject to any limitation imposed by the statutes or the Constitution of the United States.
A. To negotiate with Federal, State, and local governments and to advise and consult with representatives of the Bureau of Indian Affairs on all activities of the Bureau as they may affect the Community.
B. To employ legal counsel, the choice of counsel and fixing of fees to be subject to the approval of the Secretary of the Interior or his authorized representative.
C. To veto any sale, disposition, lease or encumbrance of reservation lands, interests, in lands, or other assets of the Community made by any authority other than the General Council.
D. To establish rules or procedures for the conduct of its affairs. The following powers shall be set forth in ordinances or resolutions passed by the General Council and approved by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs.
E. To make assignments of reservation lands and to lease reservation lands.
F. To administer Community assets and to manage all economic affairs and enterprises of the Community.
G. To acquire property and to accept gifts.
H. To borrow money and pledge the assets of the Community.
I. To assess fees for payment of expenses of the Community.
J. To control future membership, loss of membership and the adoption of members.
K. To delegate any of its authorities or responsibilities to the Business Committee or any other committee which it might establish.
Section 2. Any rights and powers heretofore vested in the General Council, but not expressly referred to in this Article, shall not be lost by reason of their omission but may be exercised through the adoption of appropriate bylaws or amendments.
Amendments to these Articles of Association may be proposed by a majority vote of the Community and be ratified and approved in the same manner as these Articles of Association.
Section 1 . The Chairman shall preside at all meetings of the General: Council and the Business Committee. He shall execute on behalf of the Community all contracts leases or other documents approved by the General Council. He shall have general supervision of all other officers, employees and committees of the Community and see that their duties are property performed. When neither the General Council nor the Business Committee is in session he shall be the official representative of the Community. The Chairman shall vote only in the case of a tie vote at General Council meetings.
Section 2. The Vice-Chairman in the absence of the Chairman shall have the power and authority of the Chairman and may, if authorized by the Chairman, assist the Chairman in the performance of his duties.
Section 3. The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep the minutes of all General Council meetings and shall certify the enactment of all resolutions and ordinances.
He shall attend to the giving of all notices required by the Articles of Association and shall receive all petitions provided for in the Articles on behalf of the General Council. Copies of all minutes, resolutions or other enactment's shall be submitted to the Bureau of Indian Affairs as soon after enactment as possible. He shall have care and custody of all valuables of the reservation. He shall carry out the financial directives of the General Council, receive all local monies of the Community and keep an accurate account of receipts and disbursements. Funds shall be deposited in a Community account in a local bank selected by the General Council where depositor/s funds are insured by Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. All disbursements shall be made by check in accordance with resolution of the General Council. He shall file a bond satisfactory to the General Council and the Commissioner of Indian Affairs when either are of the opinion sufficient funds have accumulated in the Community treasury. The General Council shall authorize payment of the annual bond premium from the local Community funds. The Secretary-Treasuser shall give a financial report at all General Council meetings and all financial records shall be available for inspection by officers of the General Council Members of the community and representatives of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
These Articles of Association , when adopted by a majority vote of the adult Indians of the Fort Independence Reservation voting at a special election in which at lest thirty percent (30%) of those entitled to vote shall vote shall be submitted to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs for his approval and shall be effective from the date of such approval.
We the undersigned, duly elected officials of the Fort Independence Executive Committee, do hereby certify that the foregoing Articles of Association were adopted by members of the Fort Independence Indian Community at a duly called general meeting on (s) January 9, 1965, by a vote of (s) 40 FOR and (s) 5 AGAINST.
|(s) Vernon J. Miller, President|
|(s) Harold D. Buff, Vice President|
|(s) Pearl A. Williams, Sec.-Tres|
|(s) Leonard M. Hill|
|Area Director Sacramento Area Office|
|Bureau of Indian Affairs|
|Date: (s) January 20, 1965|
|(s) James E. Officer Commissioner of Indian Affairs|
|Date: (s) May 7, 1965|
|(s) Irvin R. Miller|
|(s) Eleanor J. Bowers|
|(s) La Verne David|
It is certified that these Articles of Association of the Fort Independence Indian Community, California, has been reproduced for the purpose of serving as an Exhibit to the Fort Independence Tribal Operations and Management Manual. A copy of the original Articles of Association is on file at the Tribal office for public review.
WHEREAS, the Fort Independence Reservation is a Federally recognized Indian Tribe, and
WHEREAS, the Fort Independence General Council is the Federally recognized Governing body of the Fort Independence, hereinafter referred to as the "Tribe", and
WHEREAS, in accordance with Articles of Association of the Fort Independence Indian Community California, Article III-Government Body, Section 2; The General Council shall elect from it's membership, by secret ballot a Chairman, Vice-Chairman and a Secretary Treasurer who shall constitute a Business Committee which is empowered to represent the community in all negotiation, with local, state, and federal governments or agencies, provided that the business committee shall not commit the Community in any contract, lease or other arrangements unless specifically authorized by resolution of the General Council, and
WHEREAS, Article V - Powers of the Governing Body, Section K; To delegate any of its authority or responsibilities to the Business Committee or any other Committee or which other Committee which it might establish, and
WHEREAS, the General Council desires the Business Committee to conduct business on their behalf to take the political and personal dissention under past and present conditions to a more democratic and responsible government.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the General Council authorizes the duly elected Business Committee to act on behalf of the General Council in all negotiations with local, state, and federal governments or agencies including but not limited to the power to create and approve contracts, leases or other arrangements provided that all duly elected officers are present.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, in accordance with Article V, Power; of the Governing Body, Section 1(K), the General Council is delegating the following authorities and responsibilities to the duly elected Business Committee; (A) to negotiate with federal, state, and local governments and to advise and consult with representatives of the Bureau of Indian Affairs on all activities of the Bureau as they may affect the community, (B) to employ legal council, the choice of council and fixing of fees to be subject to the approval of the Secretary Of the Interior or his authorized representative, and (C) to acquire property and to accept gifts.
IT IS HEREBY CERTIFIED THAT THE FOREGOING RESOLUTION WAS ADOPTED BY THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE FORT INDEPENDENCE AT A DULY CALLED MEETING AT WHICH A QUORUM WAS PRESENT ON THE 2nd DAY OF JUNE, 1999, BY A VOTE OF 14 FOR, 7 AGAINST, 0 ABSTENTIONS. THIS RESOLUTION HAS NOT BEEN CHANGED OR AMENDED IN ANY WAY.
Wendy Stine, Chairperson
6 - 4 - 99
Stephanie L. Stephens
6 - 4 - 99