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COMMITTEE ON INDIAN AFFAIRS.
SELDEN P. SPENCER, Missouri, Chairman. CHARLES CURTIS, Kansas.
HENRY F. ASHURST, Arizona. ROBERT M. LA FOLLETTE, Wisconsin. ROBERT L. OWEN, Oklahoma. CHARLES L. McNARY, Oregon.
THOMAS J. WALSH, Montana. J. W. HARRELD, Oklahoma.
JOHN B. KENDRICK, Wyoming. RALPH H. CAMERON, Arizona. EDWIN F. LADD, North Dakota.
GEORGE BARTHOLOMAEUS, Clerk.
APPRAISAL OF TRIBAL PROPERTY OF INDIANS.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 1923.
UNITED STATES SENATE,
Washington, D. C. The committee met, pursuant to call of the chairman, in the District of Columbia committee room, the Capitol, at 2 o'clock p. m., Senator Selden P. Spencer presiding.
Present: Senators Spencer (chairman), Curtis, La Follette, McNary, Harreld, Cameron, Ladd, Ashurst, Owen, and Walsh.
The CHAIRMAN. The hearing this afternoon is on H. R. 13835. And to make the record the bill may be inserted in the record.
(The bill is here printed in full, as follows:)
(H, R. 13835, Sixty-seventh Congress, fourth session.]
AN ACT Authorizing the Secretary of the Interior to appraise tribal property of Indians,
and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, authorized in his discretion to cause an appraisement to be made to determine the total value of all the lands, timber, money, and other property belonging to any tribe of Indians, other than the Five ('ivilized Tribes and the Osage Tribe in Oklahoma.
That the Secretary of the Interior shall appoint three appraisers, one of whom shall be an employee of the Interior Department, one a member of the tribe whose property is to be appraised, and one a resident of the State wherein the Indians reside, and he shall fix their compensation, which shall not exceed $10 per day. The compensation of the appraisers and expense of making the appraisement shall be paid out of the funds belonging to the tribe whose property is appraised.
That when the appraisement is made as provided herein and approved by the Secretary of the Interior he shall then be authorized to determine and fix what, in his opinion, would be the reasonable cash value of a pro rata share of the said tribal property of any enrolled member of the tribe. When the reasonable cash value of a pro rata share of the tribal property is determined, the Secretary of the Interior is authorized, in his discretion, to pay same, out of the tribal funds belonging to said Indians, to any enrolled member of such tribe who has received a certificate of competency or a patent in fee for an allotment upon the written request and application of such Indian: Provided, That the Secretary of the Interior may, in his discretion, decline to pay the pro rata share as herein stated if he should deem it not for the best interests of said Indian, notwithstanding the Indian may possess a certificate of competency or have received a patent in fee for his or her allotment.
That any Indian who may be paid the amount of his pro rata share of the tribal properties as herein provided shall thereafter have no further interest in or claim upon the tribal property or funds of the tribe of which he is a member, and be required to sign an agreement in writing to this effect, and shall be dropped from the rolls of said tribe.
That any moneys paid to any Indian as herein provided shall be exempt and not liable to the satisfaction of any debt contracted prior to said payment.
That the Secretary of the Interior is hereby authorized to make any and all needful rules and regulations for carrying into effect the provisions of this act.
SEC. 2. That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, authorized to pay, out of any moneys beonging to the Chippewa Indians of Minnesota, such amounts as he may find due any persons of Chippewa blood whose names may have been erroneously stricken from the Chippewa annuity rolls, or who have been or may hereafter be found entitled to enrollment for annuity payments authorized by section 7 of the act of Congress approved January 14, 1889 (Twenty-fifth Statutes at Large, page 642): Provided, That any moneys found due and paid to any Indian under the provisions of this act shall not be subject to any lien or claim of attorneys or other parties.
SEC. 3. That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, authorized and directed, under such rules and regulations as he may prescribe, to collect a reasonable fee from Indian lessors for moneys collected as royalties and rentals arising from the leasing of restricted Indian lands for mining purposes, the amounts collected to be covered into the Treasury as miscellaneous receipts : Provided, That such collections shall not be made where agency expenses are paid entirely from tribal funds and that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the Five Civilized Tribes of Oklahoma : And provided further, That the fee in no case shall exceed 3 per centum of the royalties or rentals so collected.
SEC. 4. That the restrictions upon the northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of section twenty-one, township twenty-five north, range twenty-four east of the Indian meridian, in Oklahoma, which is land heretofore allotted to Isaac Jack, Seneca alottee numbered 264, are hereby removed, and the Secre. tary of the Interior is hereby authorized and directed to cause to be issued to said Isaac Jack a patent in fee simple for said described land.
SEC. 5. That the allotments of Blackfeet Indians designated as homesteads under section 10 of the act of June 30, 1919 (Forty-first Statutes at Large, page 16), imposing restriction on alienation, shall, after the death of the original allottee, be subject to partition, sale, issuance of patents in fee, or any other disposition authorized by existing law relating to Indian allotments.
SEC. 6. That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, authorized and directed, in issuing patents in fee to Indians for their original or inherited trust allotments under the acts of May 8, 1906 (Thirty-fourth Statutes at Large, page 182), and June 25, 1910 (Thirty-sixth Statutes at Large, page 855), or any other act authorizing the issuance of such patents, to cause to be inserted in each such patent a provision to the effect that it shall not become effective until after the expiration of thirty days from the date thereof: Provided, That any contract, deed, mortgage, or other instrument purporting to convey the land or any interest therein executed prior to the expiration of said thirty-day period shall be null and void, and the provisions of sectiou 5 of the act of June 25, 1910 (Thirty-sixth Statutes at Large, page 855), including the penalties provided therein, shall be applicable to any person who shall induce any Indian to execute any such instrument, or who shall offer any such contract, deed, mortgage, or other instrument for record in the office of any recorder of deeds.
SEC. 7. That the Comptroller General of the United States be, and he is hereby, authorized and directed to allow credit in the account of Charles F. Peirce, as superintendent and special disbursing agent of the Indian school at Flandreau, South Dakota, for the quarter ended March 31, 1920, for payment of $1,110 to Frank L. Van Tassel, of Yankton, South Dakota, said sum being the difference between the original contract price of flour purchased from the said Frank L. Van Tassel and the price specified in a modified contract approved by the Secretary of the Interior.
SEC. 8. That the accounting officers of the United States Treasury be, and they are hereby, authorized and directed to reopen the accounts of Harry Caden. special disbursing agent for the Flathead irrigation project for the quarters ended September 30 and December 31, 1917, and to charge expenditures shown therein for increase of compensation of employees, amounting to $13,838.96, to the appropriation “ Increase of compensation, Indian Service, 1918," instead of to the appropriation “ Irrigation systems, Flathead Reservation, Montana, reimbursable," as paid by the said Harry Caden and allowed by the Auditor for the Interior Department.
SEC. 9. That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, authorizeul in in his discretion to sell and convey by deed or patent, under such terms and conditions as he may prescribe, for school, church, or cemetery purposes, at not less than their appraised value, nonreservation Government tracts or plants, or tribal administrative plants or reserves, or parts thereof, no longer needed for