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Crow Creek Sioux Tribe Seeks Revival of Water Rights Suit

The Crow Creek Sioux Tribe on Tuesday urged the Federal Circuit to revive its suit accusing the federal government of mismanaging the tribe’s water rights, saying the lower court erred when it dismissed the case.

On top of its damages bid in the lower court, the tribe sought a declaration that the government breached its duties to the tribe and injunctive relief, including an accounting of its water rights and enforcement of U.S. Department of the Interior and Bureau of Indian Affairs consultation policies.

“The established law of the Federal Circuit is that if a tribe invokes either a money-mandating statute, or a money-mandating constitutional provision, the tribal court has subject matter jurisdiction to hear the case,” Austin Tighe, the tribe’s attorney, said in a statement. “We invoked both.”

The Crow Creek Sioux Tribe is represented by NPR Of Counsel attorney Austin Tighe and partner Michael Angelovich.

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