August 30, 2012

Allottees group considering concrete plans

Allottees group considering concrete plans
By Jerry W. Kram

The Nueta, Hidatsa and Sahnish Development Corporation held its first public meeting with potential developers in the New Town City Hall on Aug. 23 to get a feeling about the kind of projects it would like to finance on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation.
Leslie Hale Hammerberg, president of the corporation, said allottees – tribal members who hold surface and mineral title to much of the land on the reservation – have an unprecedented opportunity to improve conditions for all tribal members.
“We have land,” Hammerberg said. “We have oil. We have royalties. What we want is an opportunity to keep our money on the reservation instead of sending it off to Bismarck or Fargo or the Twin Cities to be invested who knows where.”
Hammerberg pointed out that while many allottees have prospered because of the Bakken oil boom, a large number of tribal members don’t receive any income from the development. The Mandaree segment has been one of the busiest for oil field development and is also beset with some of the worst economic problems.

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