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Ute Tribe Presents Arguments On CARES Act Distribution To Supreme Court

On Monday, the Ute Indian Tribe presented arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court about the distribution of Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) funds to federally recognized tribal governments. The Ute Tribe raised issues of whether Alaska Native Corporations (ANCs) were “recognized governing bodies of Indian tribes” as required by the CARES Act, according to a press release. Previously, the U.S. Court of Appeals held that “because no ANC has been federally ‘recognized’ as an Indian tribe, as the recognition clause [in the CARES Act] requires, no ANC satisfies the [Indian Self-Determination Act] definition.”


The United States, which was arguing to maintain its original CARES Act funding distribution, said in its briefs that for-profit ANCs are “recognized governing bodies of Indian Tribes.” The adoption of this view threatens to undo a principle of federal Indian law that tribal governments have a political, not racial, relationship to the U.S.

Tyler Hewitt is the web/social media assistant at UPR. He writes stories every day, updates the website and manages the station's Twitter and Facebook pages. Tyler is a senior at Utah State University and is studying public relations, marketing, and psychology. He loves to write, listen to music, play video games, play tennis and hang out with his fiancé and cat, Juno. He is a great plant dad and recently started collecting vinyl records!