SIX NATIONS – The Haudenosaunee Development Institute delivered its March 1st report to the Confederacy Chiefs and Clan Mothers this past Saturday at the Onondaga Longhouse, at Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. There were several items to report, beginning with an update on the Samsung wind energy project.
“Regarding the Grand Renewable Solar Project, I need to be clear to distinguish that there already has been project conclusion with Samsung on the wind project,” said HDI lawyer, Aaron Detlor. “We had told Samsung and, what they call the TTL Project, in 2009 that we are prepared to participate as 50% equity owners in the project. That would have brought in something in the range of $5-6 million a year. Instead, they went off and they made a deal with another company, which they did not tell us about.”
He reported that the about face denied the HDI a position to participate in the project.
According to Detlor, they came after the fact and offered a small amount of money, something like $100,000 or $160,000 a year, which they considered fair and reasonable.
“We asked them how much money they are making on this project” he said. “They said they can’t tell me that, it’s confidential.”
Detlor said that he found out that the project would bring the company somewhere around $6-$10 million a year.
“They were told that if the project continues it would not be doing so with the permission of this council,” Detlor reported. “And unless they do get that permission, that solar project is not going to proceed. They heard our position and will report to us again next month.”
Next was his report from a Feb.14th meeting with the Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs regarding the Nanfan Treaty of 1701.
For some time the HDI has been trying to get the Province to acknowledge that the Nanfan exists.
“They could not give us information that we would have agreed with. They suggest that the Nanfan constitutes a surrender and was geographically much smaller in area. But we at least got the Province of Ontario to formally recognize the Nanfan exists,” said Detlor. “We believe the meeting was successful to the extent that we now have a place to talk to them about the Nanfan.”
Regarding the City of Brantford, and the injunction which ordered somewhere around $350,000 be paid to the city, Detlor explained where that issue stands.
“After reviewing the litigation the City had brought trying to criminalize people, the Confederacy and individuals, we lost the injunction motion,” he said. “The City of Brantford was asking for $1.2 million. We had that amount knocked down to $360,000.”
The City began to attempt to collect on those costs and have taken legal action to force payment.
“We have prepared a settlement offer and have taken the $360,000 down to a more reasonable number,” Detlor said. “So we want council to consider this offer. According to Confederacy Secretary, this offer is within the amount to continue Haudenosaunee Council operations and does not come out of any community money.”
He then turned attention to the Burtch lands, advising that Band Council have expressed a desire to put a treatment centre on that land once it is officially transferred, but there is a problem with that, as far as Detlor is concerned.
The Burtch land has already been placed in the Haudenosaunee Land Registry system, which the Confederacy Chiefs control, and lies outside of the Provincial and federal land registry.
“The Ministry has denied any involvement (in a treatment centre) and have not participated in any discussions,” Detlor reported. “But they agreed to take it back to the relative ministries and will get back to us with respect to that.”
The rehabilitation of the Burtch lands was also reported to the Chiefs Council. According to Detlor, it continues and is very close to the completion of rehabilitation. There is going to be a gated entrance placed just off of Burtch Road, and a culvert and driveway will be removed off of Cockshutt Road, “for the safety of the Haudenosaunee.”
“They have shown support for a college course that we have initiated with Cambrian College in Sudbury, in partnership with the Confederacy and GREAT to have a college course where Haudenosaunee people are being trained as environmental monitors,” Detlor said. “Not just by the standards of the Province, but they are being trained in the environmental monitoring according to the Confederacy’s standards and principles.”
To help towards a more open and transparent line of communication with the people of Six Nations, Nichol Childs has been hired to work with the Confederacy to update the website, and Hazel Hill is scheduled to begin her weekly Saturday morning updates on CKRZ.
The HDI has also entered into an agreement with a small area logger to clear a section of land near the Highway #6 bypass. The Confederacy would get 25% of the proceeds from that logging.