Lumbee bill back in Senate

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"Lumbee bill back in Senate." Laurinburg Exchange [Lauringburg, NC] June 17, 2011.


U.S Senators Richard Burr and Kay Hagan reintroduced the Lumbee Recognition bill in the Senate this week. A federal recognition bill was introduced in the House by Rep. Mike McIntyre in January, 2011.

The Senate bill is similar to the one that passed in the House in 2010. During the last Congressional session, the Senate bill never reached the Senate floor.

The Lumbee Tribe has been seeking full federal recognition for more than 100 years. The tribe was recognized by the federal government in 1958, but received no benefits.

During its June 14, 2011 meeting, the Tribal Council voted to send back to committee a proposed ordinance that would allow honorary tribal membership to be offered to non-tribal members. Three people had already been granted honorary membership by the Lumbee Regional Development Association before the tribal government took over the administration of tribal enrollment.

“What is the criteria for this?” said Sharon Hunt, who is chairwoman and District 2 representative. “I don’t have a problem with honorary membership, but there should be some kind of criteria to say who to nominate and what it means.”

Among other business, Lumbee Supreme Court Chief Justice Gary Locklear swore in four tribal members to serve on the N.C. Commission of Indian Affairs. They are Larece Hunt, Furnie Lambert, Daniel Jones, and Faline Locklear Dial.

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