Wednesday, April 25 , 2018, 7:27 pm | Fair 56º


Letter to the Editor: The Chumash and Truth

HR 1157, the federal bill to annex 1400 acres into the Chumash reservation, was "marked up" in a 29 to 1 vote and moved in Congress to the next legislative step.

What happened?

Congressmen LaMalfa and Denham, sponsors of the bill, parroted Chumash propaganda that the Tribe is denied their ancestral right for Enrolled Tribal members to have 143 houses and a Tribal center through the County government’s refusal to negotiate. This spin has an underbelly that’s message is a few malcontents (with racist prejudice) manipulate County officials causing delays and obstruction.

How could this fabrication become the adopted truth in Washington?

It isn’t a coincidence that LaMalfa and Denham refuse to fact check the propaganda spoon fed to them by the Chumash, turning a deaf ear on the community. Their elections depended upon huge contributions by gaming and Tribal interests. And Chairman Kahn calls the pay to play argument “ludicrous.”

Fact is that the Tribe’s goals are not 143 houses and a Tribal center.  

The plan the Tribe unveiled on March 3, 2016, encompassing Camp 4 plus an added 370 acres, is for a development larger than the City of Carpinteria with its population of over 12,000. Keep in mind that the Santa Ynez Valley’s total population is slightly more than 20,000 people.” The Tribe says the community is over reacting because this is a 100 year plan. Really? Weather it’s a 10 year plan, a quick death, or a 100 year plan, a slow cancerous one, the end remains the same; urbanization and commercialization of the Santa Ynez Valley.

This is not about 143 houses for Enrolled Tribal members and a Tribal center. This is about a massive development; either now or later. And the Tribe can choose when and how.

Regarding negotiations, I encourage everyone to carefully review the facts that are clearly spelled out in a public document, which the Tribe has never disputed the accuracy of, called a Term Sheet which lists the County’s offers to the Tribe and their continual lack of response.

The Tribe's development plan, be it long term or in the near future, and the Tribe's lack of negotiation are of public record.

We, the community, have a monumental task. We must let Washington know they have been hoodwinked by a small group of wealthy seeking to double down on a gambling monopoly granted their "sovereign" nation. This will come at the expense of basic land use law and will devastate County government finances.

We, all of us, will pay.

Mike Brady
Los Olivos

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