Modrall Sperling Law Firm

Attorney Chris Killion Joins Modrall Sperling

Modrall Sperling is pleased to announce that Chris Killion has joined the firm as a Shareholder. Chris’ practice is focused on issuing drilling, division order, and acquisition title…


Dakota Access Pipeline Project Update

The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) project continues to be the subject of extensive news coverage and ongoing controversy. Last quarter’s Watch discussed U.S. District Judge Boasberg’s memorandum opinion denying the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction, which was immediately followed…

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Dakota Access Controversy: Standing Rock Sioux Tribe v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Policy Review of Federal Government’s Tribal Consultation Obligations, and Why This Matters to Us

Introduction: The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) project has become the focal point for Native American complaints concerning the manner in which federal agencies comply with their responsibilities to engage in tribal consultation on projects in and around Indian country requiring federal approvals,…

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New Mexico Court of Appeals Split Opinion Rules Tribal Sovereign Immunity Does Not Apply in Action to Declare Road Status on Tribal Fee Land

In a 2-1 opinion, the New Mexico Court of Appeals in Hamaatsa, Inc. v. Pueblo of San Felipe, 2013-NMCA- ___, No. 31,297 (July 23, 2013), took a very narrow view of tribal sovereign immunity and concluded equitable considerations of a non-tribal entity’s…

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Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Proposed Changes to Fee-to-Trust Procedures

On May 24, 2013, Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn issued a proposed rule to modify the process for challenging the Secretary’s decision to take fee lands into trust,[1. Press Release, U.S. Dep’t of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Washburn Proposes Changes to…

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The Pueblo of Sandia’s Leasing Regulations and What Businesses Need to Do to Enter into Leases

The Pueblo of Sandia (“Pueblo”) was the first tribe in New Mexico, and the second in the United States, to receive approval by the Secretary of the Interior for its tribal leasing regulations promulgated under the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal…

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Salt River Project v. Lee Navajo Nation Held to Waive Regulation of Employment

The Case: The federal court for the District of Arizona has issued an important order[1. Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District v. Lee, et al., No. CV-08-08028-PCT-JAT, Order (D. Ariz. Jan. 28, 2013). The case was twice previously appealed to the…

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BIA Issues Final Regulations Governing Residential, Business, and Wind and Solar Resource Leasing on Indian Lands

The Revised Rule: On November 27, 2012, the Bureau of Indian Affairs issued the long-awaited and substantially revised regulations[1. See Notice of Final Rulemaking, 77 Fed. Reg. 72,440 (Dec. 5, 2012).] addressing non-agricultural surface leasing of Indian land under the Indian Long Term…

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Employment Law
Native American Law
Natural Resources and Energy Law
Water Law