U.S. Department of Interior’s Office confirms county tribes misspent $6.2 million of BIA transportation money

Highway construction work is pictured on the Ethete South Project on the Wind River Indian Reservation in 2018. Photo from C10 file

The Billings Gazette is reporting that a U.S. Department of the Interior’s report is confirming that the roads department operated by the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes has misspent $6.2 million of federal money.

The story first broke in June, and a newspaper article was quickly refuted by both tribes. Clinton Wagon, Chariman of the Eastern Shoshone Business Council and Roy Brown, Chairman of the Northern Arapaho Business Council wrote a letter to the editor, and can be read here. 

Advertisement

The report said that between 2013 and 2015 the tribes spent almost seven times over what their contract had allowed on equipment. The report also said that tribes used the money on administrative costs that were not approved.

The report and rebuttal suggests that most of the misspending blame falls on the Bureau of Indian Affairs staff.

You can see more on this story here.

Advertisement