United States District Court, D. Idaho
DELAWARES OF IDAHO, INC., KANSAS DELAWARE TRIBE OF INDIANS, INC., ARTHUR A. CREECH and WANDA JUNE WEEKS, Plaintiffs,
WILLIAM P. CLARK, Secretary of Interior of the United States of America, Defendant.
STIPULATED MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
Lynn Winmill United States District Judge
before the Court is a Joint Motion to Release Funds and Close
Case filed by the remaining interested parties to the above
captioned matter. See ECF No. 49. For the reasons outlined
below, the motion is granted. The Clerk of the Court shall
disburse remaining funds held by the Court to the Delaware
Tribe of Indians as outlined herein.
1983, the Idaho and Kansas Delawares, representing their
enrollees, sued the United States Department of the Interior
(Interior or United States) alleging underpayment of funds
owed to tribal members under Public Law 96-318. See ECF No.
17 at 1 (Status Report on Compliance with Court's Order);
ECF No. 49 (Joint Motion to Release Funds). As part of that
litigation, the United States acknowledged that it owed
monies to enrollees or members of three tribal entities that
descend from the historic Delaware Nation: the Idaho
Delawares, the Kansas Delawares, and the Delaware Tribe of
Indians. On October 2, 1984, the United States District Court
for the District of Idaho entered judgment and ordered the
United States to pay monies to enrollees and members of the
three tribal entities. ECF No. 17 (“1984
Judgment”) at 1-2 and Attachment A.
United States did not timely fulfill its payment obligations
under the 1984 Judgment. See ECF No. 17 at 1-2 (Status Report
on Compliance with Court's Order). However, after the
parties and the Court recalculated the amounts owed by the
United States in 2006, the Court Ordered, and the United
States paid in full, the following amounts into three
separate interest bearing accounts supervised by the District
- $182, 194.53 to 234 Kansas Delawares born after October 3,
- $45, 157.20 to 58 Idaho Delawares born after October 3,
- $1, 186, 964.08 to 1, 372 Cherokee Delawares born after October 3,
See ECF No. 30 at 1-2 (Final Order of October 31, 2006); ECF
No. 31 (Order of December 7, 2006) (noting that the United
States had paid the Judgment in full).
the United States paid the judgment in full, the three
relevant tribal entities began submitting names to the Court
for payment. As of April 16, 2010, final distributions had
been made to the Idaho Delawares and the Kansas Delawares,
thus resolving the matter as to those entities. See ECF No.
38 (Order for Release of Funds to Idaho Delawares); ECF No.
39 (Docket entry closing matter as to the Kansas Delawares).
Since April of 2010, the only remaining issue has been
ensuring final and just distribution to the Delaware Tribe of
Indians and its members.
11, 2019, the remaining parties filed the pending Joint
Motion to Release Funds and Close Case so as to resolve the
matter as to the Delaware Tribe of Indians. ECF No. 49.
RELEASING REMAINING FUNDS TO THE DELAWARE TRIBE OF
Court finds that the Delaware Tribe of Indians has made
significant and reasonable efforts to find eligible members
since 2007, including submitting lists of names to the Court
on December 19, 2007, July 22, 2008, and June 30, 2012.
original 1, 372 Delaware Tribe of Indians members eligible
for payment under the Order of October 31, 2006, the Tribe
has submitted to the Court names and addresses for 1, 196
members (87% of the original 1, 372 eligible members). Of
those 1, 196 names submitted to the Court, 1, 110 members
have been successfully paid (81% of the original 1, 372
eligible members). For the other 86 names submitted to the
Court, the Court attempted payment but was ultimately
unsuccessful, usually because the tribal member moved or the