The Metlaktla Indian Community is reviving a suit requesting expanded fishing rights in the waterways surrounding their island reservation. The latest complaint claims there is “no doubt that Congress . . . impliedly reserved for the Community the ‘adjacent fishing grounds’ as part of [the Community’s island reserve].” As a result, the Community claims they should be exempt from the State of Alaska’s limited entry permitting program that regulates fishing activities in those areas. In February, the Ninth Circuit issued an amended opinion, remanding this case back to the trial court for the determination of whether Metlakatla citizens had definitive fishing rights in the relevant areas and limiting the impact of a 2022 Ninth Circuit panel ruling that appeared to grant expansive fishing rights to the Community.
[To accompany Federal Court Case Law Update "Alaska Tribe Renews Suit for Fishing Rights” from Brooks Animal Law Digest Issue No. 190]