Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Tribes, government agree to $1 billion settlement

YAKIMA, Wash. — The federal government says it will pay more than $1 billion to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by American Indian tribes over mismanagement of trust lands.

The settlement announced jointly by the Justice Department and the Interior Department resolves claims brought by 41 tribes from across the country.

The Interior Department manages about 2,500 tribal trust accounts for more than 250 tribes, including leases for oil and gas and grazing rights. Dozens of tribes have filed suit in recent years claiming the accounts have been mismanaged.

The agreement announced Wednesday is in addition to the $3.4 billion settlement in a class-action lawsuit brought by the late Elouise Cobell of Browning, Mont. That deal settled cases brought by 500,000 individual Indians over the government's mismanagement of trust lands.

The Associated Press (“AP”) is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. On any given day, more than half the world’s population sees news from the AP. Founded in 1846, the AP today is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. The AP considers itself to be the backbone of the world’s information system, serving thousands of daily newspaper, radio, television, and online customers with coverage in text, photos, graphics, audio and video.