Amended Constitution 2010
this link to download the Amended Constitution 2010
ABSENTEE SHAWNEE TRIBE OF INDIANS
We, the people of the Big Jim and White Turkey Bands of the Shawnee Nation of
American Indians initially organized pursuant to a constitution and bylaws
ratified December 5, 1938, as the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma, in order to protect our just claims and
rights of treaties and treaty agreements with the United States; to protect our
culture, heritage and religion; to protect and maintain our reserved, allotted,
and other lands; to manage our tribal land and property; to transact our tribal
business and economic enterprises in domestic and foreign trade; to negotiate
with representatives of Federal, State, local and tribal governments, in regard
to all matters of ourselves and our posterity, do hereby establish this
ARTICLE I - NAME
The name of this federally recognized Indian tribe shall be the Absentee-Shawnee
Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma.
ARTICLE II – JURISDICTION
ratified August 11, 1988, Broadened jurisdiction, allowed for the development of
tribal code law, and provided a set of rules for the judicial branch of
SECTION 1. The jurisdiction and governmental powers of the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma shall, consistent with applicable federal
law, extend to all persons and to all real and personal property, including
lands and natural resources, and to all waters and air space within the Indian
Country as defined in 18 U.S.C. 1151 or its successor, over which the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma has authority within the boundary of the
tribal jurisdiction established by Agreement dated June 26, 1890 and ratified by
the Act of March 3, 1891 (26 Stat. 1019), and such other land or interest in
land, which may be subsequently acquired.
SECTION 2. The jurisdiction and governmental powers of the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma shall also, consistent with the applicable
Federal law, extend outside the exterior boundaries of the Absentee Shawnee
Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma.
SECTION 3. The exercise by the tribe of its jurisdiction and governmental
powers shall be incorporated in appropriate legislation enacted by the Tribe and
embodied in a tribal code in order to promulgate procedural rules for a tribal
judicial system, and to establish and provide for a tribal law enforcement
agency, tribal regulatory bodies and other appropriate administrative agencies
of the Tribe.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
ratified November 19, 2010, decreased blood degree from 1/4 to 1/8.)
SECTION 1. The membership of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of
Oklahoma shall consist of the following persons:
(a) All persons of Indian blood
enrolled or who were entitled to be enrolled on the official census roll of the
tribe as of January 1, 1937. All
Indian blood shown on that roll shall be considered to be blood of the Absentee
(b) All children of Absentee Shawnee
blood born to any member of the tribe between January 1, 1937 and April 17,
1954, the effective date of Amendment II to the 1938 constitution and bylaws.
(c) All individuals with at least
one-eight (1/8) degree Absentee Shawnee blood.
From and after the effective date of this
Constitution no person shall be enrolled as a member of the Absentee Shawnee
Tribe unless he possesses at least one-eight (1/8) degree Absentee Shawnee
SECTION 3. Any person
entitled to membership who has been enrolled as a member of another tribe may be
enrolled in the Absentee Shawnee Tribe; provided that person has not shared in
land or money as a member of another tribe: and provided further, that person
relinquishes in writing and officially terminates membership in the other tribe.
SECTION 4. All persons, desiring to be enrolled members of the tribe, who
are not presently enrolled, must submit an enrollment application to the
Secretary of the Executive Committee for subsequent approval or disapproval of
the Executive Committee.
Applications for membership must be supported by birth certificates or other
records recognized by State or Federal officials.
Such documents or copies thereof shall be kept by the Executive Committee
for their permanent records.
SECTION 5. The General Council shall have power to prescribe rules and
regulations by ordinance, covering future membership including adoptions and the
loss of membership.
ARTICLE IV - TRIBAL GOVERNMENT
ratified August 11, 1988; redefined the function and ability of the General
Council to act on behalf of the Tribe and removed the ability of the General
Council to dictate the actions that could be taken by the Executive Committee. This Amendment also restructured the
Tribal Court system.)
The tribal government, as described in this Article, is composed of two (2)
separate branches, i.e., the Judicial Branch and the Legislative/Executive
Branch. In addition, there is an
independent body charged with the responsibility for conducting tribal
SECTION 1. The General Council of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe shall
consist of all members of the Tribe eighteen (18) years of age or older, and
shall exercise such powers as defined in this Constitution.
SECTION 2. Legislative/Executive Branch
(a) Executive Committee.
There shall be an Executive Committee
consisting of five (5) representatives including Governor, Lt. Governor,
Secretary, Treasurer and a Representative, all of which shall be elected by
referendum. Such committee shall
have both legislative and executive powers as set forth in Article V.
(b) Previous Governing Body.
The five (5) Business Committee members elected under the previous constitution
shall serve until the expiration of their terms of office, unless earlier
removed, or until their successors are duly elected and installed.
The first election for Executive Committee members and other elective officials
under this Constitution shall be conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and
held on the third Saturday of June following the ratification of this
Constitution. At that election the
positions of Governor and Secretary shall each be filled for a two (2) year
term, the offices of Lt. Governor, Treasurer and Representative shall be filled
for a one (1) year term. Thereafter,
there shall be annual elections in June and all terms shall be two (2) years in
SECTION 3. Judicial Branch The judicial power of the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma is hereby vested in one Supreme Court consisting of
seven (7) Justices and such inferior courts as may be established by Tribal Law.
(a) The Courts of the Absentee
Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma shall be courts of general jurisdiction and
shall further have jurisdiction in all cases arising under the Constitution,
Laws and treaties of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma. The Supreme Court shall have original
jurisdiction in such cases as may be provided by law, and shall have
jurisdiction in all cases.
(b) The Tribal Courts, in any action
brought before them, shall have the power of judicial review, in appropriate
cases, in order to declare that legislative enactments of the Executive
Committee or the Council, are unconstitutional under this Constitution or
prohibited by Federal statues and void.
In such cases, the Court shall have the authority to declare such act
void and to issue injunctive relief.
(c) The Supreme Court Justices and
Tribal Court Judges shall be selected by the Executive Committee and shall serve six (6) year terms
and until their successor be duly installed.
At the expiration of any term, each Justice or Judge may, at his option,
be considered for reconfirmation to a new term by the Executive Committee.
(d) Vacancies in tribal judicial
offices may be filled by appointment of the Executive Committee for the
remainder of the unexpired term.
(e) This Article shall be effective
upon enactment of enabling legislation by the Executive Committee, and the
installation in office of the Justices and Judges according to this Article.
ARTICLE V – POWERS
SECTION 1. The General Council of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians
of Oklahoma reserves and shall exclusively exercise the following powers, unless
such powers are specifically delegated to the Executive Committee or other
appropriate tribal entity in accordance with the process set forth in Article IX:
(a) Borrowing money which mortgages,
encumbers or endangers any existing tribal properties, holdings or assets.
(b) Purchase land or property with
tribal trust assets.
(c) Such additional powers, not so
stipulated in this Constitution may be assigned and/or delegated to the various
branches of government by referendum.
SECTION 2. Except for those powers expressly reserved to the General
Council of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma by this
Constitution, the Executive Committee is empowered to enact legislation,
transact business and otherwise speak or act on behalf of the Absentee Shawnee
Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma in all matters on which the Tribe is empowered to
act now or in the future, including the authority to hire legal counsel to
represent the Tribe. (Amendment 1-C;
ratified August 11, 1988; redefines the authorities and responsibilities of the
ARTICLE VI - ELECTIONS
(Amendment 1-D; ratified August 11, 1988; changes the terms
“voter registration” and “registered voter” to “eligible voter” throughout the
SECTION 1. First Election The first election of tribal officials
under this Constitution (on the third Saturday in June following its
ratification) shall be conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs under
procedures it develops. Such
election shall include balloting to elect persons to serve on the Executive
Committee, the Tribal Court, the Appeals Court, and the Election Commission.
SECTION 2. Election Commission There shall be an Election Commission
consisting of five (5) tribal members including Election Commissioner, Deputy
Election Commissioner, Secretary, and two (2) Election Commission Members, all
of which shall be elected by referendum.
At the first election cited in Section 1 above, the positions of Election
Commissioner and Election Secretary shall be filled for a three (3) year term,
the offices of Deputy Election Commissioner and one (1) Member shall be filled
for a two (2) year term; the remaining Member shall be elected to a one (1) year
term of office. Thereafter, there
shall be annual elections in June and all terms shall be three (3) years in
(a) Duties The Election Commission shall be available at all times during
the year, as needed, to conduct any of the tribal elections provided for in this
Constitution. Such elections shall
be conducted pursuant to an Election Ordinance required by this Article. Also included among its duties is:
Determine eligibility of prospective candidates for tribal offices (both
elective and appointive), receive petitions and determine their validity, and
perform all other functions necessary to insure that the democratic elective
process is honestly and fairly administered.
(b) Installation of Officers Except for the first election under this
Constitution, the Election Commissioner shall call the first meeting of the
Executive Committee within thirty (30) days following the date of the June
election and preside over the installation of newly elected officers which shall
include those elected to the Judicial Branch and the Election Commission.
SECTION 3. Election Ordinance All tribal elections specified in
this Constitution shall be conducted in accordance with an Election Ordinance to
be drafted jointly by the Executive Committee and the Election Commission in
cooperation with representatives of the Judicial Branch. That ordinance shall become effective
upon its ratification by a referendum of the General Council. In order to have procedures available
for the Election Commission to use in conducting the second annual election
under this Constitution, a proposed Election Ordinance shall be presented to a
referendum vote no later than October following the first annual election under
this Constitution. Until an Election Ordinance is duly ratified, the Election
Commission shall use those regulations developed for the first election.
The Election Ordinance shall be consistent with this Constitution and shall
include, but not be limited to, the following provisions: Absentee balloting, secret ballots,
settling of election disputes, avoidance of nepotism, handling of petitions
which shall be signed only by eligible voters and which require the designation
of a spokesman empowered to clarify the intent of such petition and shall
require that a summary of the petition's objective shall appear on each sheet of
the petition, the installation of newly elected officials, recall of officials,
and any other matters relating to the responsibility of the Election Commission.
SECTION 4. Fees The Election Commission is empowered to establish
reasonable fees which shall be required of all those who file as candidates for
elective office, and shall be responsible for using such fees to pay for
necessary costs in conducting the election process. The Commission shall adopt a
procedure for the safe handling of all funds by a Treasurer it shall elect from
within the Commission membership, who shall be bonded in the manner provided for
the Treasurer in Section 4 of Article XIII.
The Commission shall have conducted an annual audit of its finances and
present a copy of such audit report to the General Council at the October
semi-annual meeting. Copies shall
also be provided to the Executive Committee and, upon request, to any tribal
SECTION 5. Conflict of Interest Members of the Election Commission
shall be responsible to disqualify themselves and withdraw from all functions of
their positions during any election or process in which a conflict of interest
exists. Such persons shall resume their duties only when there is no longer a
conflict of interest. The Commission
shall have authority, by majority vote, to disqualify any of its members in the
event they continue to function in a conflict of interest situation.
The Election Ordinance shall describe what constitutes a conflict of interest. However, included in the description
shall be the event where someone from the immediate family of a Commission
Member is a candidate for any elective tribal office. Also to be included is a provision
that Commission Members shall not be eligible to become candidates for any
elective tribal Office, other than for reelection to the Commission, until one
(1) year has passed following completion of their service on the Election
SECTION 6. Alternates In order to keep the Election Commission up
to its full complement, that body is empowered to appoint alternates who shall
attend meetings of that body and be available to function as regular members as
the need arises during conflict of interest situations or other absences.
SECTION 7. Kinds of Elections.
(a) Annual Election: Held on
the third Saturday in June primarily for the purpose of electing persons to fill
those positions whose terms expire for the given year. It is conducted by the Election
Commission. Voting is by secret
ballot at polling places. Absentee
voting is permitted. Unless
provision is made in the Election Ordinance for a run off, the outcome of this
election shall be decided by plurality.
(b) Tribal Referendum: An
election conducted by voting at polling places rather than at a General Council
meeting. Referendum elections are
for the purpose of deciding on issues of major importance which are usually set
forth in Tribal Ordinances. This is an opportunity for the eligible voters to
participate in making Tribal laws pursuant to this Constitution. A majority of votes cast shall decide
the issue. Certain kinds of issues
are required by this Constitution to be decided by referendum. The Executive Committee or a General
Council meeting may also refer issues or questions to the eligible voters for a
referendum election. See Article IX.
(c) Initiative A referendum
election which is initiated by the eligible voters in a manner set forth in
(d) Recall An election
initiated by the eligible voters through a petition for the purpose of voting on
whether an elected official should be recalled from office. Upon its receipt of a valid petition
as set forth in Article VII, the Election Commission is required to conduct a
referendum election to consider recall of an elected official. A majority of ballots cast shall
decide the matter. Any resulting
vacancy shall be filled pursuant to Article VIII.
(e) General Council Election There are certain powers which, by
terms of this Constitution, are to be exercised by the eligible voters of the
tribe meeting in General Council.
Voting at General Council meetings may be by secret ballot at the pleasure of
the General Council. (Amendment 1-E; ratified August 11, 1988; makes this section
consistent with Amendment 1-B by removing the ability of the General Council to
bind the Executive Committee by a majority vote of the General Council.)
(f) Constitutional Amendment
Conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs pursuant to regulations of the
Secretary of the Interior and provisions of Article XII of this Constitution.
ARTICLE VII - REMOVAL, RECALL AND FORFEITURE
SECTION 1. Removal.
Each elected body of the government shall have the power to remove any of its
members for a justifiable cause by an affirmative vote of three (3) of its
members. The Judicial Branch and
Executive Committee shall jointly enact regulations providing for such removals. These regulations shall be used in
removal proceedings by each of the other elected bodies of the tribal
government. Included in these
regulations shall be procedures for the defendant to confront the plaintiff in
answer to a written statement of the charges at a special meeting of the
responsible committee, court, or commission, called for that purpose. The defendant shall be provided with
the written statement of charges at least fifteen (15) days prior to the removal
SECTION 2. Recall Upon
receipt of a valid petition signed by at least thirty percent (30%) of the
eligible voters of the tribe, it shall be the duty of the Election Commission to
call and conduct within sixty (60) days, an election for the purpose of recall
of an elected tribal official. The
election shall be conducted pursuant to the Election Ordinance. Only one (l) member of that elected
body shall be considered for recall at any given recall election. This shall not prohibit one (1)
member from each elected body from being considered for recall during a single
SECTION 3. Forfeiture
It shall be the duty of the affected elected body to immediately declare a
position within its body vacant and to promptly fill such vacancy in the manner
provided in Article VIII when it is determined that the incumbent:
(a) Has tendered resignation:
(b) Has been convicted of a crime involving dishonesty in a court of competent
(c) Has been convicted of a felony while in office by a court of competent
(d) Has falsified his application or has omitted information concerning a
conviction of a felony or any crime involving dishonesty, when filing to be a
candidate for elective office.
ARTICLE VIII - VACANCIES
SECTION 1. Vacancies in any elective office shall be promptly filled by
the remaining members of the affected body appointing a person who qualifies
pursuant to Article XIV. Such
appointee shall serve until a replacement is duly elected at the next annual
election and installed in office, except as it relates to filling a vacancy in
the office of Governor in Section 2 of Article XIII.
SECTION 2. An appointee shall not be used to temporarily fill a vacancy
in either of the two (2) highest ranking positions on an elective body. Rather, it shall be the
responsibility of that body to temporarily shift its members so that appointees
shall serve in position of lesser rank.
SECTION 3. In the event two (2) vacancies exist in the Executive
Committee, the authorities of that body are limited to the payment of utility
bills and salaries until those vacancies have been filled by appointment.
ARTICLE IX - INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM
SECTION 1. Initiative The procedure whereby eligible voters
may exercise their right to enact legislation that will be binding on the
Executive Committee and the Tribe.
Upon receipt of a valid petition signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the
eligible voters, it shall be the duty of the Election Commissioner to call and
conduct such initiative election within sixty (60) days, presenting to the
eligible voters for their determination such issues or questions which are set
forth in the petition. The decision
of the majority of those voting shall be binding on the tribe.
SECTION 2. Referendum
The procedure whereby all eligible voters of the tribe have an opportunity to
express themselves directly by voting on any enacted or proposed legislation
(see Section 7(b) of Article VI).
Both secret balloting and an opportunity for absentee voting shall be provided
in tribal referendum elections pursuant to the Election Ordinance.
ARTICLE X - BILL OF RIGHTS
The protections guaranteed to persons by Title II of the Civil Rights Act of
1968 (82 Stat. 77), against actions of a tribe in exercising its powers of
self-government shall apply to the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of
Oklahoma, its officers and all persons within its jurisdiction.
All members of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma shall be
accorded equal rights pursuant to tribal law.
No member shall be denied any of the rights or guarantees enjoyed by
citizens under the Constitution of the United States, including, but not limited
to, freedom of religion and conscience, freedom of speech, the right to orderly
association or assembly, the right to petition for action or the redress of
grievances, and due process of law.
Employment of legal counsel for the tribe shall be in accord with Title VI of
the Civil Rights Act of 1968.
It is provided in this Constitution that the acceptance of the Indian Civil
Rights Act (82 Stat. 77) does not waive the tribe's inherent right to immunity
ARTICLE XI - SAVINGS CLAUSE
All actions of the Business Committee taken under the previous Constitution
shall remain in full force and effect except to the extent they are inconsistent
with this Constitution.
ARTICLE XII - AMENDMENTS
Amendments to this Constitution may be proposed by a resolution of the Executive
Committee, or by a petition signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the
eligible voters of the Tribe, and if approved by the Secretary of the Interior,
shall be submitted to a referendum vote conducted pursuant to the secretary's
regulations and shall be effective if ratified by a majority of those who cast
ballots, provided at least twenty percent (20%) of those eligible to vote, cast
ballots in such election.
ARTICLE XIII - DUTIES OF OFFICERS
Tribal officers may, from time to time, in carrying out their official
responsibilities, be required to attend functions of National, State, local or
private organizations as an official representative of the tribe. In such cases, it shall be the duty
and responsibility of the tribal official to conduct himself in a manner
befitting the office he holds and the people he represents.
SECTION 1. The Governor shall call and preside over all meetings
of the General Council and the Executive Committee except as provided in Article
XVI or any other applicable provision of this Constitution or subsequent
ordinances, and shall be accountable for the exercise of those duties specially
assigned to him by this Constitution, and such additional authorities which may
be delegated by either the General Council or the Executive Committee. He shall be held responsible for
executing the policies established by the General Council. A semi-annual report shall be given
to the General Council at its April and October meetings. Such report shall be given orally and
in writing by the Governor as outlined in Article V. The Governor shall make an oral
report on all of his activities, meetings, and conferences at the monthly
Executive Committee meetings. The Governor shall file an agenda with the
Executive Committee Secretary, three days prior to a regularly scheduled
Executive Committee meeting. The
Governor shall not vote except in the case of a tie.
SECTION 2. The Lieutenant Governor, in the absence of the
Governor, or during procedures to remove or recall him, shall possess all of the
privileges, authority, and responsibility of the office of Governor. In case of a vacancy in the office of
the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor shall succeed at once to the office and
shall serve for the remainder of the Governor's unexpired term. The resulting vacancy in the office
of Lieutenant Governor shall be filled pursuant to Article VIII. The Lieutenant
Governor shall have such other duties as may be delegated to him by the
Governor, by actions of the Executive Committee, or General Council.
SECTION 3. The Secretary
shall prepare an agenda for all
meetings under the direction of the Governor.
The Secretary shall be responsible for preparing timely notices of all
meetings and the dissemination of such notices, as appropriate, to the Executive
Committee and General Council. The
Secretary shall prepare and read the minutes of the previous meeting and call to
the attention of the Executive Committee any unfinished business. The Secretary shall read to the
Committee all communications of official business which must be acted upon by
the Executive Committee. The
Secretary shall certify all official business transactions taken by the General
Council and the Executive Committee.
All records, minutes, documents and correspondence for which the Secretary is
responsible shall be on file at the tribal headquarters at all times. The Secretary shall be custodian of
the tribal membership roll and shall give priority to keeping it current. Responsibilities as tribal membership
roll custodian shall be limited to the following:
(a) The timely processing of new
membership applications which shall be approved or disapproved by the Executive
(b) Annotating the roll to reflect deceased members.
(c) Recording official name changes and/or changes of address.
(d) Prompt reply to questions and confirmation of enrollment.
The Secretary shall have a working knowledge of the Treasurer's duties and
responsibilities. The Secretary
shall accept and be responsible for other duties as assigned by the Executive
Committee. In the absence of the
Governor and Lieutenant Governor, the Secretary shall assume the position of
Governor Pro-Temp, except in case of vacancies of the two (2) top positions.
SECTION 4. The Treasurer shall be custodian of all monies, and
related bookkeeping functions, which come under the jurisdiction or control of
the tribe. The Treasurer shall
conserve, invest, and
pay out money pursuant to the provisions of this Constitution. All expenditures shall be reviewed
and approved or disapproved by the Executive Committee before payment. The authority to approve or
disapprove such expenditures shall be based on constitutional authority and/or a
duly adopted General Council resolution or ordinance pursuant to the provisions
of this Constitution. Subject to the
limitations above, the Executive Committee shall render in writing such approval
or disapproval that shall be maintained as a permanent part of the bookkeeping
record. The Treasurer shall, upon
receipt of written approval, be authorized to sign checks or otherwise make
payment on behalf of the tribe. The
Treasurer shall keep and maintain an accurate account of all receipts and
disbursements and shall report the accurate amounts of each account to the
Executive Committee at each regular meeting.
The Treasurer shall submit financial reports and results of audits
pursuant to the provisions in Article V.
Such reports and audits shall be equivalent to National Accounting
Association practices and
standards. The Treasurer shall keep
double-entry accounting records, which shall be fully implemented within one (1)
year following the first election of officers under this Constitution. The financial records shall be
maintained at the tribal headquarters.
The Treasurer shall be bonded by a bona fide bonding company in any
amount satisfactory to the Executive Committee and such bonding fees shall be
paid from tribal funds or program funds if authorized by the funding agency.
SECTION 5. The Representative shall be a full voting member of the
Executive Committee and shall perform such duties and responsibilities as may be
delegated to him by the Executive Committee and/or the General Council.
SECTION 6. Judicial Branch Officials The duties of such officials shall be
set forth in the Judicial Ordinance which shall be consistent with this
Constitution. That ordinance shall
include a provision for the Chief Justice to call and conduct any meeting or
election that the Executive Committee or Election Commission has failed to call
even though such meeting or election has been mandated by this Constitution or a
valid petition, except as provided in Section 2, of Article XVI.
SECTION 7. Independent Commissions
The duties of Election Commission officials shall be set forth in the
Election Ordinance. Any future
commissions, which may be established by referendum, shall be subject to a
separate ordinance which shall be established pursuant to this Constitution and
any limitations placed on it by the General Council within the scope of its
ARTICLE XIV - QUALIFICATIONS OF CANDIDATES
SECTION 1. Before being declared a candidate for any elective office,
each prospective candidate must show that the following qualifications have been
(a) An enrolled member of the tribe.
(b) An eligible voter for purposes of voting in tribal elections.
(c) At least twenty-one (21) years of
age on the date of the election for which he desires to be a candidate.
(d) Physically reside within the
following Oklahoma counties:
Cleveland, Pottawatomie, Oklahoma, McClain, Garvin, Pontotoc, Seminole, Lincoln,
(e) In cases where a prospective
candidate has been convicted of a felony, such person shall not be eligible for
consideration as a candidate until at least five (5) years have passed following
completion of the penalty for such conviction(s).
(f) Not more than one (1) member of an immediate family shall be a candidate for
election to the same tribal elective body.
Provisions shall be set forth in the Election Ordinance to deal with such
SECTION 2. Specific qualifications, in addition to those in
Section 1, may be imposed if approved by tribal referendum.
SECTION 3. Appointments to fill vacancies, or for any other
purpose, shall be filled by persons who meet the qualifications of this Article
and any specific qualifications which may be imposed pursuant to Section 2 of
ARTICLE XV - INSTALLATION OF OFFICERS
SECTION 1. First Election Within ten (10) days following
certification of results of the first election under this Constitution, the
Superintendent of the Bureau of Indian Affairs shall call and conduct a meeting
of newly elected persons for the purpose of installing the successful candidates
in their respective offices.
SECTION 2. After the first
installation of officers, it shall be the duty of the Election Commissioner to
Call and conduct meetings of newly elected officials within ten (10) days
following certification of election results, for purposes of installing them in
office which shall include administering an oath of office. The content of such oath shall be set
forth in the Election Ordinance.
ARTICLE XVI - MEETINGS
SECTION 1. General Council Meetings shall be held semi-annually in
April and October on dates to be set by the Executive Committee. Notices shall be posted at
appropriate places at least fifteen (15) days prior to each General Council
SECTION 2. Special General Council Meetings may be called by the
Governor and shall be called and conducted by him when directed to do so by a
majority vote of a quorum of the Executive Committee. In the event he refuses to call a
meeting when so directed, the highest ranking official who favors calling the
meeting, shall be empowered to exercise that authority.
SECTION 3. Executive Committee Meetings shall be held monthly at
tribal headquarters on dates to be established by the Executive Committee by
public notice. Written notification
shall be provided to each Committee Member at least (5) days in advance. The
Committee may hold meetings at another location provided all members are so
advised in the advance notice.
SECTION 4. Special Meetings of the Executive Committee may be
called by the Governor as necessary with advance individual written notice. Any three (3) members of the
Executive Committee may call a special meeting of that body by presenting a
written notice to all members of the Committee.
If the Governor fails to attend, the highest ranking of those who called
the meeting shall be empowered to conduct the meeting, provided a quorum is
SECTION 5. All meetings of each of the tribal elective bodies are closed
to non-tribal members unless they are on official business with the tribe, or
are otherwise invited to attend by the respective body.
SECTION 6. Procedures for calling and conducting meetings of tribal
elective bodies, other than the Executive Committee, shall be set forth by each
such body in an appropriate resolution which shall be consistent with this
SECTION 7. Except where otherwise provided in this Constitution, all
meetings shall be conducted in accordance with adopted procedures.
SECTION 8. Legal notices shall be published in a local newspaper in the
counties mentioned in Article XIV, Section l(d).
ARTICLE XVII - QUORUM
SECTION 1. Executive Committee, Tribal Court, Appeals Court, and
Election Commission Meetings. In
any duly called meeting of the above elected bodies any three (3) members of
that particular body shall constitute a quorum to transact business within the
scope of authority of that body.
SECTION 2. General Council Meeting Fifty (50) members of the General
Council, who are eligible tribal voters, shall constitute a quorum to transact
business at any duly called General Council Meeting.
ARTICLE XVIII - TRIBAL LEGISLATION
The Executive Committee is the body primarily responsible for legislative
functions. However, the General
Council, by means of referendum, initiative, or in meetings of that body, has
reserved to itself certain legislative authorities. Enactments of the General Council
shall, in most cases, be set forth in ordinances.
The Executive Committee, in implementing such ordinances, or in executing
its legislative function, shall adopt resolutions. Recognizing that there are certain
actions or expressions each governing entity will make which do not specifically
constitute tribal legislation, they shall be set forth in motions. A motion is an expression
initiated in a General Council meeting by any eligible tribal voter, or in
meetings of the Executive Committee by a member of that body.
The forms of tribal legislation are defined as follows:
Resolution. A formal written
expression of opinion or will.
Resolutions are subordinate to, and must be consistent with Tribal Ordinances
and terms of this Constitution.
Resolutions shall be used as necessary to set forth rules, regulations, and
procedures for the purpose of implementing the intent of Tribal Ordinances.
Ordinance. An enactment of
the General Council at a tribal referendum; a separate document which shall have
long-range effect, such as, establishing procedures governing: the conduct of elections, removing
elected officials or the manner of enrolling tribal members. Ordinances are tribal laws which
shall have general application and shall remain in effect until amended or
rescinded in the same manner in which they were enacted. Ordinances shall not conflict with
this Constitution. In the event a
subsequent constitutional amendment is enacted that would conflict with an
ordinance, that ordinance, or conflicting portion thereof, shall be null and
ARTICLE XIX - RATIFICATION
This Constitution shall be effective when approved by the Secretary of the
Interior, or his authorized representative, and ratified by a majority of the
General Council of the tribe voting in an election authorized by the Secretary
of the Interior and conducted under regulations promulgated pursuant to Section
3 of the Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act of June 26, 1936 (49 stat. 1967).
I, Acting Deputy, Commissioner of Indian Affairs, by
virtue of the authority granted to the Secretary of the Interior by the Act of
June 26, 1936 (49 Stat. 1967, as amended, and delegated to me by 230 DM
1.1, do hereby
approve the Constitution of
the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of
Indians of Oklahoma: provided that nothing in this
approval shall be construed as authorizing any action under the Constitution
that would be contrary to Federal Law.
Washington, D.C. (SGD) Theodore Krenzke
Date: February 4, 1977
Acting Deputy Commissioner
of Indian Affairs
CERTIFICATE OF RESULTS OF ELECTION
Pursuant to an order approved
February 4, 1977, by the
Acting Deputy Commissioner of Indian Affairs, the foregoing Constitution of the
Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma was submitted for ratification to
the adult members of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma and was
on June 4, 1977, duly ratified by a vote of 95 for, and 77
against, in an election in which a majority of the 172 qualified voters
cast their ballots in accordance with Article X of the tribe's constitution and
Section 3 of the Act of June 26, 1936 (40 Stat. 1967).
(SGD) John E. Taylor
Chairman, Election Board
(SGD) Esteline S. Schulenberg
Election Board Member
(SGD) Wallace C. Tyner
Election Board Member
Date: June 4, 1977