WATER August 18, 2015

Attorney Lawrence Kogan arrives to Flathead Valley, Montana to
highlight all that is wrong with the CSKT Water Compact.

Speaker says Water Compact part of conspiracy

At Altitude Bar and Grill, St. Ignatius, Montana

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKMhJ8qLdUw

Posted: Wednesday, August 12, 2015 11:31 am | Updated: 11:46 am, Wed Aug 12, 2015.

Trip Burns Lake County Leader


In the basement of the Altitude Bar and Grill in St. Ignatius Tuesday, over 50 people gathered to hear New York attorney Lawrence Kogan speak out against the water compact between the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and the state of Montana.

Kogan said he was there to warn private property owners on the Flathead Indian Reservation and Lake County from having their water and land rights taken away.

Robert Fanning and his organization Regulatory Lawfare Relief sponsored the event. The mission, according to a public invitation, was to “organize, manage, and secure legal representation for those industrial interests whose rights have been or will be harmed by the Compact.”

The public sat and listened as Kogan asserted that the compact is wrong for this area, and represents a bad decision by all parties involved – including the state and federal governments as well as the CSKT government.
“It is our natural right to be left alone,” he said. “And to move freely on our private property.”

Kogan’s talk was formally titled, “How to Prevent the Federal Government’s CSKT Water Compact from Taking Your Private Property Without Just Compensation.”

Kogan said he is a part of a newly formed team – with associates in Washington D.C. and locally in Montana – that hopes to pursue legal action against the state of Montana and stop the compact from being ratified in Congress. The compact passed the Legislature in April. Montana state representative Matthew Monforton was scheduled to be in attendance, but declined due to illness. Kogan said his team will face an enormous challenge – one that he concedes might not be won. “We need firepower. We’ve got to lay it on the line.”

Kogan said that he doesn’t think the state of Montana nor the CSKT government has presented the evidence needed to dissuade the public about the compact.

He hopes to sue and depose high-ranking individuals to provide evidence he feels will prove the compact violates state and federal laws.

“We’re going to embarrass the heck out of them,” he said, although he was not specific on whom he would like to depose for the record. “It will make them nervous.”

As far as the legal approach he wishes to pursue, he did not give specifics, but he said it will be far-reaching.
“We’re going to throw all the stuff on the wall,” he said. “And see what sticks.” Kogan spoke in broader terms on the role government should play in citizens’ lives.

“We gave the government the right to govern us,” he said. “They work for us.” This statement was met with applause from the room of people in attendance. “This is a political fight,” he said. “We’ve got to get the word out.”
Kogan said he would like to get the facts to prove the water compact is the wrong move for the people of Flathead and Mission Valley – the ranchers, farmers, and irrigators that use the water for their land.

Kogan also took issue with the CSKT government and questioned the sovereignty of the Flathead Indian Reservation. He said that he distinguishes a difference between the tribal members and the tribal government. Not all tribal members, he said, support the water compact. “The tribal governance has shown to be unaccountable,” he said. Kogan said that beyond the tribal government, the federal government has been encroaching on private property rights for over 30 years.

“The federal government has changed the deal,” he said. “They’ve done it in a hidden way.”

Kogan believes the United States, in dealing with Native Americans since the 1800s – through treaties and agreements – hasn’t treated Native Americans very well. “They screwed it up,” he said. “We’re being made to repent the sins of our ancestors.” He said the state and federal governments are giving reparations through land and water rights.

“You have a choice. To live with all this or defend your rights."

"Water is the new gold,” he said.

Daily Interlake front page article appearing Sunday, August 16

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