Consisting of the Fort Mojave, Chemehuevi, Colorado River, Quechan and Cocopah First Nations, to state their united positions of opposition in regards to the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Repository Facility proposed for construction in Southeastern California at Ward Valley.
whereas: The Fort Mojave Tribe, Chemehuevi Tribe, Colorado River Tribes, Quechan Tribe, and the Cocopah Tribe are all considered sovereign nations within the external boundaries of the United States by the Federal Government; and
whereas: These Tribal groups have been residing in Native North America prior to the arrival of non-Indians; and
whereas: These Tribes are the Indigenous People of this region and hold an extreme and solemn relationship with the Land, Animals and Water; and
whereas: These Tribes were given instruction by their Creator on all aspects of survival and to be caretakers of their Traditional land and use areas where they were placed; and
whereas: These traditional lands have extreme religious, cultural and archaeological, non-renewable sources and resources that relate and tie them spiritually and physically and these areas: and
whereas: The retention of culture, native language, traditions and land based reference areas prominent in native song and oral history is a main objective of these Tribes in order to maintain a distinct identity as individual Tribes: and
whereas: The United States of America has entered into a government-to-government relationship with the Fort Mojave, Chemehuevi, Colorado River, Quechan, and Cocopah Tribes; and
whereas: Pursuant to said government-to-government relationship, the Congress of the United States has recognized the obligations of the United States has to promote, support , and protect the right of Indian people to govern themselves, preserve and practice their native religions, and preserve and protect their Reservation and traditional homelands: and
whereas: The Congress of the United States, as embodied in the United States Constitution, hundreds of treaties entered into between the United States and Indian Tribes, and countless federal laws and regulations, has undertaken a solemn obligation and trust towards the Fort Mojave, Chemehuevi, Colorado river, Quechan, and Cocopah Tribes, which trust imposes upon the United States the highest standard and fiduciary duties to preserve and protect their Indian religious cultural sites whether located on or off Reservation lands and to protect their Reservation lands, water, and air from toxic contamination or pollution; and
whereas: The Secretary of the Interior, Mr. Bruce Babbitt, has breached this trust and the solemn obligations owed to the Fort Mojave, Chemehuevi, Colorado River, Quechan and Cocopah Tribes, by refusing to conduct further hearings on whether the low-level radioactive nuclear facility proposed for the Ward Valley would adversely impact or destroy existing religious and cultural sites of the Fort Mojave, Chemehuevi, Colorado River, Quechan, and Cocopah Tribes in the Ward Valley or contaminate and pollute the existing Reservation lands and waters of said Tribes, knowing that his decision was based upon information provided by technical experts, who in the past have been wrong about similar facilities that they said would be safe and which are now leaking and polluting surrounding lands and waters; and
whereas: By ignoring the voice of the people that will be affected, Mr. Babbitt has shown his total disregard for Native Americans and has shunned his trust responsibility which is mandated through Federal Legislation. This further demonstrates his non-recognition of our Tribal Leaders which is contrary to the National Historic Preservation Act as amended, by which trust may have been gained on our part and a real understanding of our religious concerns which was the intent by amending the Act; and
whereas: We can't take the slightest chance of contamination of ground water of the Colorado River which is the basis of our presence and existence.
Therefore; Be It Resolved That The Signed Tribes Listed Below Commit Their Efforts To The Prevention Of This Low-level Radioactive Waste Facility Being Permitted Or Constructed Anywhere In The Ward Valley.