One First Nation in Saskatchewan’s far north says it is moving ahead with a treaty payout to its membership, while another says its plans are on hold.
The Black Lake and Fond-du-Lac Dene nations received $177 million from the federal government in January as part of a Treaty 8 agricultural settlement.
Fond-du-Lac Chief Louie Mercredi says a July 20 membership referendum passed and the band will be moving ahead with a one-time payout to members of $15,000 in the next few days.
In order to receive the payout, documentation shows voters were asked to approve treaty money also be used for investments in housing, economic development, health and education.
MBC has documentation that at least one appeal has been filed contesting the Fond-du-Lac referendum results on a number of grounds, including a lack of consultation with the membership.
However, plans for a treaty payout to members of the Black Lake Dene Nation are on hold.
According to Black Lake Chief Coreen Sayazie’s Facebook page, this First Nation’s June 26 referendum vote passed with a “strong majority”, but has since been appealed.
The post says one of the objections to the referendum was voters did not have enough time to review materials before casting ballots.
She says a new vote will be held on Aug. 24, giving band members more time to review materials before making a decision.
MBC also has documentation that the Black Lake referendum question was virtually identical to the one posed in Fond-du-Lac, including a promise of a one-time payout of $15,000 if treaty money investments in housing, economic development, health and education are approved.
(PHOTO: Treaty 8 logo. Photo courtesy of treaty8.ca)