AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — The Maine Indian Tribal-State Commission says that lawmakers failed to follow the proper process when they passed laws regarding saltwater fishery issues without the consent of the Passamaquoddy Tribe.
The commission’s report says that the Legislature circumvented the process required by the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act when it passed laws in 1998, 2013 and 2014 without working with the tribe.
The commission made up of tribal and state representatives said lawmakers, the tribe and other parties should be brought back to address the issues through the proper amendment process.
The report points to a measure that sought to resolve a debate between the state and the tribe over the taking of marine organisms. Lawmakers removed a part of the bill that required tribal approval regarding saltwater fishery issues.