Scott files injunction to delay Ethics Hearing

Cyril Scott, President of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, was granted a Temporary Restraining Order against several Tribal Officials. The order postponed an Ethics Hearing scheduled for November 17, 2014

Cyril Scott, President of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, was granted a Temporary Restraining Order against several Tribal Officials. The order postponed an Ethics Hearing scheduled for November 17, 2014

By Vi Waln

ROSEBUD, SD – Cyril Scott, President of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, was granted a temporary restraining order against the Tribal Council to delay an ethics hearing which was scheduled for November 17.

The hearing was scheduled after the Ethics Commission came to the consensus that a violation had occurred under Article 1 of the Bylaws of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe which speaks to the duties of officers. Court documents show the recommendation for a hearing was due to Scott allegedly violating Section 1, which reads:

“The President shall manage and administer the affairs of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, including the supervision of tribal employees, subject to the resolutions, ordinances and instructions of the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Council. No tribal employee or tribal member shall be subjected to unfair and political repercussions and/or retaliation by the President or any of his/her representatives in any matter. Such action will be documented and referred to the Ethics Commission of the
Rosebud Sioux Tribe. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Tribal Council. The President shall vote only in case of a tie. (Amendment X effective September 20, 2007 – vote 585 for; 150 against; 71 ballots spoiled or mutilated)”

A temporary restraining order was granted to Cyril Scott as the Plaintiff. The defendants listed in the court record include Lorraine Walking Eagle (Chairwoman of the RST Ethics Committee), Julie Peneaux (RST Tribal Secretary, on behalf of the RST Tribal Council) and William Kindle (Vice-Chairman of the RST Tribal Council). The order enjoins “the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Council and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe Ethics Committee from conducting a hearing on this matter in council chambers on Monday, November 17, 2014.”

Scott, who is represented by Pierre Attorney Al Arendt, alleges that the initial reason for one of the two ethics complaints was already heard in the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Court and dismissed. The two ethics charges referred to in court documents were filed by Tamara Lynn Wilcox and Calvin “Hawkeye” Waln, Jr.

The court record contains an Inter-Office Memorandum signed by President Scott on October 21, 2013 informing a tribal program director that one of his employees “has filed charges against me for making the decision to lay off some of your staff.” The memorandum gave the director a “directive to you to discharge your employee Tammy Wilcox immediately.”

This memo prompted the filing of an ethics complaint on October 30, 2013 by Tamara Lynn Wilcox. She denies filing “charges on President Scott.” Her complaint also states that she did file “a civil complaint on Cyril “Whitey” Scott in his individual capacity on October 15, 2013.” Her ethics complaint also states that she was “not employed by the Rosebud Sioux Tribe” on October 21, 2013 and so was not subject to the RST Personnel Policies and Procedures.

Scott also alleges that he did not receive any documentation in a timely manner regarding the nature of the two complaints. Court documents also state that Scott alleges that his due process rights were violated by not being allowed to be party to an executive session held by the Tribal Council with the Ethics Committee on October 9, 2014. The court documents also read that the executive session was allegedly “out of order” because “Vice President Kindle removed himself from these discussion because of their impropriety. No chairman pro temp, was named to replace him pursuant to Roberts Rules of Order.”

Four causes of action are listed in the complaint filed by Scott. The first one speaks to the alleged violation of Scott’s due process rights. The second speaks to the fact that the complaint filed by Wilcox was already “litigated in tribal court.” The third action alleges that the Ethics Committee refused to give Scott “an opportunity to respond to the complaint initially filed with him.” The fourth cause states that “The RST Tribal Council and Ethics Committee’s attempts to remove the President/Plaintiff are unconstitutional.”

The temporary restraining order on CIV. #14-490 was issued by the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Court on November 14, 2014. The order was signed by Tribal Court Judge AnneMarie Michaels. A hearing on the request for a preliminary injunction has been scheduled for December 5, 2014 at 2:00pm at the Tribal Courthouse.

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