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Oneida Nation responds to Big Apple Fest ruling

Posted on Mar 29, 2019 by

Today, federal district court Judge William Griesbach ruled that the 1838 Treaty with the Oneida created the Oneida Reservation as lands held in common for the Oneida Nation, and that the Oneida Reservation has never been disestablished. 

Unfortunately, Judge Griesbach also ruled that the Oneida Reservation has been diminished through the allotment of reservation land under the General Allotment Act, the issuance of fee patents and sale of land to non-Indians.  While we are pleased the court rejected Hobart’s claims regarding the creation and supposed disestablishment of the Reservation, we disagree with the court’s determination that the Reservation has been diminished and are reviewing all of our options. 

The case involved Hobart’s attempt to impose its special events permit ordinance on the Nation for the annual Big Apple Fest, and the court decided that Hobart could regulate those aspects of the Big Apple Fest occurring on fee land and public roads.