Letter from Chief Gilbert Blue Concerning
New Catawba Constitution
The Catawba Indian Nation
OFFICE OF TRIBAL GOVERNMENT
P.O. BOX 188, CATAWBA, SOUTH CAROLINA 29704
TELEPHONE (803) 366-ISWA FAX (803) 366-9150
September 17, 2002
re. The Catawba Constitution
Dear Tribal Members.
There has been a lot of confusing information being circulated lately. I would like for
you to look at, not spoken words or politics, but simply the Law. In May of 1993, the
General Council voted to accept the Catawba Land Claims Settlement Act. We had
over 300 members at that meeting and approximately 240 of you voted to accept the
Settlement. That Settlement became Public Law 103-116. (The Catawba Land Claims
Settlement Act) October 23, 1993. It was signed by the President of the United States
as well as by the tribe.
One thing that we all agree on is that we would like to hold new elections. This can be
done very easily. The Settlement Act states in P.L. 103-ll6, Section 8, Part b that
"Until an election of tribal Officers under the new constitution the Executive
Committee shall, (A) represent the tribe and its members in the implementation of
this Act;..." This section is very specific, but it comes down to this. Once a new
Constitution is adopted, then elections for tribal officers can be held within 120 days.
(P.L. 103-ll6, Section 9, Part d). SO LETS GET A CONSTITUTION ADOPTED!!!
Members have told us that they were very confused about the last vote to adopt the
draft constitution. You were deliberately mislead by people who wanted the
constitution to fail. This time let's don't let that happen. We're asking for your
comments and suggestion over the next few weeks. Inside this lelter is a self-
addressed, stamped envelope. Just write down your thoughts and drop it in the mail.
You should also feel free to talk to me or give me a call. We will distribute a new draft
to members by October 1O, 2002 and we will have a vote on the Constitution on
November 15th, and 16th. 2002.
Thank you for your time, your thoughts, and your support.
Chief Gilbert B. Blue