The latest bounce
For the first time, the Bureau of Indian Affairs has formally apologized for mistreating Native Americans. Bureau chief Kevin Gover, a Pawnee Indian, told a group of federal officials and tribal leaders that the agency is haunted by "a legacy of racism and inhumanity. By accepting this legacy, we accept the responsibility of putting things right," he said.
Wise-use groups are suing Clinton over his creation of national monuments. The Mountain States Legal Foundation and the Blue Ribbon Coalition argue that Clinton made the monuments unnecessarily large (HCN, 11/22/99). Western Republicans tried to limit the president's power to create monuments; the House bill failed this summer, 197-234.
A federal judge has put the kibosh on a lawsuit seeking to overturn the Forest Service's initiative to protect roadless areas (HCN, 11/8/99). U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge told the Boise Cascade Corp., ranchers and two Idaho counties that they can't sue until the agency's rule is final. The judge dismissed a similar complaint from the state of Idaho last spring.
The "salmon czar" has jumped ship. Will Stelle is leaving his position as northwest regional director of the National Marine Fisheries Service to join Seattle's oldest law firm. Stelle told the Seattle Times that state and local governments now must take the lead in protecting endangered salmon (HCN, 12/20/99).
* Greg Hanscom