Tribes, Michigan celebrate deal on Indian hunting, fishing rights

Petoskey, Michigan (AP) 10-07

Five Michigan tribes and the state are celebrating an agreement designed to end decades of legal wrangling over members’ hunting and fishing rights.

Leaders of the tribes joined state and federal officials for a pipe and flag ceremony in Petoskey. They signed a document declaring their negotiations complete.

The official court papers still await a federal judge’s signature. It’s unclear when that will happen.

The deal recognizes the right of tribal members to do subsistence hunting, fishing and plant gathering on public lands covered by an 1836 treaty. The tribes will have regulations to protect the natural resources from overuse.

They can use private lands only if owners give permission.