Judge OKs Release Of Coronavirus Funds To Tribes While Still Deciding On Tribal Corps


WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP)- A federal judge in Washington, DC, has ruled – at least temporarily – in favor of over a dozen tribal nations in their bid to keep Alaska Native corporations from getting a share of $8-billion dollars in coronavirus relief funding earmarked for tribes.

U-S District Judge Amit Mehta late yesterday said the U-S Treasury can begin distributing money to 574 federally-recognized tribes, but not to the corporations.

In the meantime, Judge Mehta is considering the larger question of whether the corporations meet the definition of “tribe” in the funding bill and are eligible for any of the funding. The decision came in lawsuits that at least 15 tribes brought against the Treasury Department.