The current practice of fractional vote valuation in Tribal/Minerals Council elections is outdated and must be revised. Change is long overdue!
It is my opinion that all members of the Osage Tribe who own a headright, or portion of a headright are considered Osage Tribal members and are, therefore, entitled to a “one member, one vote” full vote valuation privilege.
The current system of fractional votes valuation is broken and is a disgrace. Regardless of the percentage of headright ownership, we need to change casting fractional votes to full votes.
The question is, HOW do we bring about this change and WHO has the POWER to make it happen? Is it the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Osage Nation Congress, Osage Nation Administration, or Osage Minerals Council? Is the current fractional vote-counting practice the result of a LAW or Regulation? Someone must have knowledge of the original 1906 Act which states, “All members of the Osage Tribe, who are eligible to vote and have a full headright, or part of one, have one vote.”
We are approaching another Tribal/Minerals Council election. I believe equitable voting rights should be a primary issue for shareholders and one that should be researched and resolved, before the next election. Can our leaders in the Executive and Legislative branches, along with the Minerals Council stand together to right this wrong election vote counting practice? I have faith they will embrace the rights of our shareholders and will do whatever they can to bring about the most necessary and long overdue change.
Letter to the Editor
Original Publish Date: 2022-01-06 00:00:00