Letter: Mandaree needs oil moneyDuring the 2012 Energy Summit held at Fort Berthold, Gov. Jack Dalrymple stated that the oil production has paid $6.6 million this year. He mentioned programs that the Mandaree Community was unaware of.
During the 2012 Energy Summit held at Fort Berthold, Gov. Jack Dalrymple stated that the oil production has paid $6.6 million this year. He mentioned programs that the Mandaree Community was unaware of.
According to an article in Bloomberg, “North Dakota oil brings blight with growth as costs soar,” dated Jan. 25, “The North Dakota Legislature set aside $1.2 billion last spring to help counties cope with the oil boom’s impacts. About $885.3 million remains to be distributed.”
Therefore, the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation are paying for the taxes and Mandaree Segment is bringing in oil revenue, yet the Mandaree people’s needs have not been met.
In my conversation Jan. 31 with Gov. Dalrymple, it was noted that the Mandaree community has grown as families are returning to the community. The Mandaree Community lacks housing, the Mandaree School BIA teacher/staff housing are old and substandard (unsafe and unsanitary) and low income rental units are vacant due to lack of funds to renovate.
The community center has many problems due to poor construction and is in noncompliance. The sewer and water lines are out of date. There is no gas at the only convenience store in Mandaree. The roads have sustained great damage from the high volume of traffic which is a danger to the residents of the Mandaree community.
These are just a few needs of the Mandaree Community. Even before the oil and gas development, Mandaree has been in need of housing, education, and health care.
I have written to Gov. Dalrymple, with copies to the MHA Nation Tribal Business Council, Mandaree Community Board, Bureau of Indian Affairs – Fort Berhold Agency, North Dakota Indian Affairs commissioner, U.S. Sen. Kent Conrad, U.S. Sen. John Hoeven and U.S. Rep. Rick Berg, along with are comments from the Mandaree community regarding the issues surrounding the “Impact issues of oil and gas development on the Fort Berthold Reservation,” attached for their review. These comments address specific concerns of Mandaree, as the community has suffered the greatest impact from the oil and gas activities within the boundaries of the MHA Nation.
It was stated $885.3 million remains to be dispersed. We, the members of the Mandaree community, are seeking funds in addressing our unmet needs.
What is the process of accessing these state funds? We await a response to our issues and concerns in addressing the great needs of the Mandaree community.
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