Conversations with legislators, friends, family, and neighbors offer an important opportunity to share why LD 1626 is needed and how it will benefit Maine. We’ve compiled a few compelling reasons to support this legislation that you can use in discussions, letters to the editor, and emails to state officials and legislators.
- The tribes in Maine are asking to be treated like the other 570 federally recognized tribes. That’s all. Nothing more, nothing less.
- The tribes are merely asking to be able to determine their communities’ futures. They should have that right on their native lands without the state of Maine obstructing them.
Environment and outdoor heritage
- For a millennium, the tribes in Maine have been good stewards of the land and natural resources. Securing tribes’ future will help protect the environment.
- The tribes will continue to be good stewards of their lands. Their history of hunting and fishing is who they are, and they will conserve land and wildlife because that’s their heritage.
Fairness and equity
- Tribes in Maine have not benefited from more than 150 federal laws passed since 1980. LD 1626 can fix this issue. This legislation implements 22 consensus recommendations released in January 2020 by the Task Force on Changes to the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Implementing Act. Read the full report online and learn more in our LD 1626 FAQ.
- The time is now to stand by our tribal neighbors. When they prosper, Maine prospers.
Unintended consequences of 1980 Settlement Act
- Because of current laws, the state of Maine has repeatedly fought tribes in court, a waste of taxpayers’ money. Passing this legislation would end costly legal battles, allowing those resources to be spent elsewhere.
- The 1980 Settlement Act permits the tribes to purchase up to 300,000 acres within the state, but for various reasons they have only been able to purchase 66% of those lands. The proposed legislation would help fix this broken deal so more native land can be purchased.