By Rebecca Knight
April 08, 2011
The record is clear. Sealaska’s remaining land selections could easily be finalized today with absolutely no controversy. In 1975 at the specific request of Sealaska president John Borbridge, ANCSA was amended to allow their selections from the very same withdrawal areas they now claim to have been unfairly forced to select from. Additionally, in June 2008, as required under the Alaska Land Transfer Acceleration Act, Sealaska submitted their final selections to the BLM from within those very same withdrawal areas. According to the Act these selections are “final and irrevocable”.
I fully expect Sealaska to offer various excuses why they were “forced” into these selection areas, but the record is clear on the two above points. No amount of spin can change the public record.
During a public meeting in Petersburg last August, Senator Murkowski expressed regret at the “anxiety and tension” created in the small towns and communities of Southeast Alaska as a result of the Sealaska proposal. She acknowledged how it had “pitted neighbor against neighbor” and how the “resentment was not good for communities”. Given her acknowledgement, why does the Senator keep pushing this unnecessary legislation?
Received April 07, 2011 - Published April 08, 2011
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