Latest U.S. Department of the Interior News

Lawsuit in tribal battle over North Carolina casino project

Jul. 8, 2020 5:41 PM EDT

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A yearslong bid by the South Carolina-based Catawba Indian Nation to build a casino and resort in North Carolina could stall once again following a lawsuit by North Carolina-based Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, the latest development in a casino turf war between the two tribes. The...

FILE - In this June 2, 2016, file photo, a grizzly bear at the Woodland Park Zoo waits for a salmon to be tossed to him in Seattle. The federal government on Tuesday, July 7, 2020, decided to scrap plans to reintroduce grizzly bears to the North Cascades ecosystem in Washington state. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

Feds scrap plans to reintroduce grizzlies to North Cascades

Jul. 7, 2020 4:18 PM EDT

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The federal government on Tuesday decided to scrap plans to reintroduce grizzly bears to the North Cascades ecosystem in Washington state. U.S. Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt told a meeting of community members in Omak, Washington, that his agency will not conduct the...

Oklahoma governor signs gaming compacts with two more tribes

Jul. 3, 2020 6:24 PM EDT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — New gaming compacts have been signed with two additional Indian tribes, according to Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt. Though Stitt on Thursday described the compacts with the Kialegee Tribal Town and Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians as promoting economic development, Matthew Morgan, the...

Video shows fatal shooting of unarmed man by Carlsbad ranger

Jul. 1, 2020 2:04 PM EDT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Recently released body camera video shows the final moments before an unarmed Colorado man was shot and killed by a park ranger at Carlsbad Caverns. KOB-TV in Albuquerque reported Tuesday that video from the March shooting has 26 seconds missing, leaving local prosecutors unsure...

FILE - In this April 24, 2015, file photo, pumpjacks work in a field near Lovington, N.M. As New Mexico's oil and gas industry struggles with lower prices and slowing production brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, some members of Congress and state officials are urging the U.S. Interior Department to allow operators to temporarily plugs wells until prices stabilize. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

New Mexico delegates, officials press for plugging oil wells

Jun. 13, 2020 11:51 AM EDT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — As New Mexico’s oil and gas industry struggles with lower prices and slowing production brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, some members of Congress and state officials are urging the U.S. Interior Department to allow operators to temporarily plugs wells until prices...

FILE - This Feb. 21, 2012, file photo, shows equipment in the oil fields of the Uintah Basin, southeast of Vernal, Utah. The Trump administration has started giving energy companies temporary breaks on royalties they must pay for oil and gas extracted from federal lands because of the coronavirus pandemic, government data shows. Royalty rate cuts so far have been authorized for at least 76 energy leases in Utah. (Trent Nelson/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP, File)

Trump administration cuts oil, gas fees in hundreds of cases

Jun. 10, 2020 7:35 PM EDT

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Trump administration has awarded energy companies hundreds of breaks on payments for oil and gas extraction from U.S. lands and the Gulf of Mexico during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a government database and federal officials. The temporary breaks on royalty and rental...

FILE - In this April 20, 2020, file photo, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt speaks in Oklahoma City. Stitt announced Monday, June 8, 2020, new gambling compacts his office negotiated with the Otoe-Missouria Tribe and the Comanche Nation have been

Feds approve Oklahoma's newly negotiated gambling compacts

Jun. 8, 2020 6:01 PM EDT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The federal government approved new gambling compacts between Oklahoma and two tribal nations, Gov. Kevin Stitt announced on Monday, but the governor still remains locked in a legal dispute over tribal gambling with other tribes and legislative leaders from his own party. The compacts...

Land management acting director remains, lawsuit filed

Jun. 8, 2020 3:00 PM EDT

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (AP) — The acting director of the Bureau of Land Management will remain in his position after the U.S. Department of the Interior extended his tenure despite a lawsuit disputing the appointment. William Perry Pendley has served as the federal bureau's acting director since July by...

Judge sides with tribe in lawsuit over reservation status

Jun. 6, 2020 6:11 PM EDT

A judge has stopped the federal government from rescinding its reservation designation for a Native American tribe's land in Massachusetts, ordering the Interior Department to review the matter and issue new findings. U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman in Washington, D.C., granted a summary judgment on behalf of...

Oklahoma justices asked to settle compact tiff with governor

Jun. 4, 2020 3:56 PM EDT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma’s Republican legislative leaders asked the state Supreme Court on Thursday to settle whether Gov. Kevin Stitt overstepped his authority when he reached deals with two Native American tribes to allow sports gambling. That was Attorney General Mike Hunter’s...