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Information is current as of January 2021.

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Bay Mills Indian Community

Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians

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Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians

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Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi (Gun Lake Tribe)

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Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians

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Resource Directory: Bay Mills Indian Community

Tribal Office Address:

Bay Mills Indian Community Tribal Court, 12449 W Lakeshore Dr Brimley, MI 49715, 906-248-8810/8811, FAX: 906-248-5817

Tribal Organization:

  • IRA government formed 1937
  • Constitution enacted 1937
  • Number of Council members — Government is by General Council composed of all tribal members 18 years of age or older. There are five members on the Executive Council who are officers of the tribe and exercise powers delegated by the General Council.
  • Tribal Council term of office — 2 years
  • Number of Tribal members — 2,199
  • Number of voting members — 1,611 18 years and older

Judicial Organization:

The court has one trial judge, one clerk. The trial judge is elected for a six-year term. Judges may run for reelection and there is no limit on time served. The appellate court consists of three judges who are also elected for staggered terms of six years. All judges are members of the tribe.

Current Personnel:

  • Chief Judge: Leah Parish
  • Appellate Judges: Josh Hudson, Tamara Munz, and Tara Parish
  • Deputy Clerk: Denise A. Parish
  • Administrator: Phyllis Kinney
  • Healing to Wellness Case Manager: Leah Parish
  • Healing to Wellness Case Assistant: Helen Wilkes
  • Tribal Prosecutor: Jennifer Obreiter
  • Assistant Prosecutors: Kathryn L. Tierney
  • Public Defender: Vacant
  • Probation Officer: Terry E. Carrick

Territorial Jurisdiction:

The Tribal Court exercises civil and criminal jurisdiction over its reservation, which consists of 2,000 acres in Chippewa County, MI. Jurisdiction is also exercised regarding commercial and subsistence natural resource harvesting activities of enrolled members of the Bay Mills Indian Community within the 1836 Treaty ceded territory.

Requirements for Practicing Before Tribal Court:

To be admitted to practice before the Tribal Court, attorneys must provide proof of membership in good standing in the State Bar of their state of residence. Also, a court advocate (who is a member of the State Bar of Michigan) is available to be appointed to represent defendants charged with violating either major civil infractions or criminal offenses at the election of the defendant. Finally, lay advocates are admitted at the court’s discretion.

Court Facilities:

Facilities include a courtroom, jury deliberation room, judge’s chambers, clerk’s office, and law library. The law library contains both primary and secondary legal authorities regarding tribal, state, and federal matters. Case and docket management is fully computerized.

Intergovernmental Agreements:

The tribe has an agreement with the Chippewa County Department of Social Services for emergency child welfare case investigations.

The tribe has a Law Enforcement Agreement between the Bay Mills Indian Community and the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Department of Treasury covering on-reservation transactions. The tribe also accepts and prosecutes alleged violations of the Chippewa-Ottawa Resource Authority Treaty Fishery Regulations referred to them by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources or other state law enforcement agencies (provision is contained within).

Adoption of Court Rule 105.1 — Foreign Judgments and CRT Rule 105.2 Code of Ethical Conduct for Judges, CRT Personnel, Lawyers and Lay Advocates; 105.3 Court app. attorneys/advocates; 105.4 — electronic signatures; 105.5 — Motions in Civil Proceedings

Lein Agreement — State of Michigan

Laws and Procedures:

  • Tribal Constitution
  • Tribal Court Code (Chapters I-XXI)
  • Tribal Ordinances
  • Tribal Hunting and Fishing Regulations
  • Chippewa-Ottawa Resources Authority Regulations based on U.S. District Court Consent Decree (including amendments and emergency orders)
  • Federal statutes, regulations, and caselaw (as may be applicable)