The Ottumwa Courier

AP National

October 7, 2013

AP IMPACT: Tribes mishandle funds, go unpunished

(Continued)

That explains why funding for the Crazy Horse School in South Dakota increased from $4 million in 2000 to $5.6 million in 2011, even though each year's audit reported a litany of problems: Blank checks were not locked away, expenses were not competitively bid, payments couldn't be backed up with invoices, employee travel patterns showed waste and possible abuse. During this time, Indian Education questioned at least $5.7 million in costs at Crazy Horse.

Thomas Thompson, a senior budget official at Indian Affairs, said reducing funding based on past practices would penalize tribal members rather than address management issues. The standard punishment is requiring tribes to submit invoices for reimbursement, rather than giving full funding at the start of each year.

Agencies can in theory wrest programs back from tribes, but almost never do. In 2012, for example, Indian Affairs had taken back the programs of three of 566 federally recognized tribes. "They don't want to take the program back;" said Brian Pogue, a BIA employee for 30 years who retired as its director. "They want the tribe to succeed."

Despite the myriad problems detected in Northern Arapaho programs, including personal use of grant money, the tribe is not among the three.

When the Northern Arapaho audit report for 2010 was finally filed earlier this year, the auditors gave the tribe the worst possible rating. They said the tribal government was such a mess that they couldn't even render an opinion.

Despite the disarray, federal funding kept increasing. The tribe spent $14.8 million in 2010 — up from $9.3 million in 2007.

The current business council — a group that pledged reforms when it took office in January — said the diabetes and elder food programs had been cleaned up. New software will help detect fraud, and the council said it is working to implement further reforms.

"I know it's going to take some time. Change don't happen overnight," said new Northern Arapaho Business Council member Ron McElroy. "It's a lot more than I imagined."

------

Pritchard reported from Los Angeles. Interactive Newsroom Technology Editor Troy Thibodeaux in New Orleans and researcher Susan James in New York contributed to this story.

Follow Justin Pritchard at https://twitter.com/lalanewsman .

Text Only
AP National
  • Ginsburg: Court right to void clinic buffer zones WASHINGTON (AP) — Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is defending a rare Supreme Court decision that put her at odds with women's rights groups. Ginsburg said the court's unanimous ruling in June that struck down the 35-foot, protest-free zone on sidewalks

    August 1, 2014

  • Poll: Foreign policy no longer Obama strong point WASHINGTON (AP) — Foreign policy used to be a bright spot in Americans' opinion of President Barack Obama. Not anymore. An Associated Press-GfK poll finds that dissatisfaction with Obama's handling of events in Ukraine, Gaza and elsewhere now matches

    August 1, 2014

  • US employers add 209K jobs, rate rises to 6.2 pct. WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. employers extended their hiring surge into July by adding a solid 209,000 jobs. It was the sixth straight month of job growth above 200,000, evidence that businesses are gradually shedding the caution that had marked the 5-year

    August 1, 2014

  • Semi crash coats Indianapolis highway in butter INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A semitrailer has overturned on an Indianapolis interstate, spilling what police say are 45,000 pounds of packages of butter and other dairy products. The crash happened about 3:30 a.m. Friday in the eastbound lanes of Interstate

    August 1, 2014

  • Contract talks in Met Opera labor dispute extended NEW YORK (AP) — It's a drama worthy of the Metropolitan Opera: Frantic, last-minute labor negotiations aimed at averting a lockout that threatens to stop both pay and benefits for thousands of singers, musicians, stagehands and other workers. With ju

    August 1, 2014

  • WWI aviation still alive at aerodrome in New York RHINEBECK, N.Y. (AP) — There's still a place where buzzing biplanes swoop in pursuit of German triplanes, where pilots in open cockpits let their scarves flutter in the wind. The sights and sounds of World War I flight are recreated regularly at the

    August 1, 2014

  • State Dept: 'No American is proud' of CIA tactics WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department has endorsed the broad conclusions of a harshly critical Senate report on the CIA's interrogation and detention practices after the 9/11 attacks, a report that accuses the agency of brutally treating terror susp

    July 31, 2014

  • GOP: Lerner emails show bias against conservatives WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional investigators say this is why they want all of Lois Lerner's emails. Newly released emails show the former IRS official referring to some right-wing Republicans as "crazies" and more, a revelation that is fueling GOP c

    July 31, 2014

  • Suing Obama: GOP-led House gives the go-ahead WASHINGTON (AP) — A sharply divided House approved a Republican plan Wednesday to launch a campaign-season lawsuit against President Barack Obama, accusing him of exceeding the bounds of his constitutional authority. Obama and other Democrats derided

    July 31, 2014

  • As US job market strengthens, many don't feel it WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. unemployment rate has plunged since the start of last year to a five-year low of 6.1 percent. And the July jobs report being released Friday will likely show a sixth straight month of healthy 200,000-plus gains. Yet for Do

    July 31, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National