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Judge halts virus relief funding for Alaska Native firms

The Coeur d'Alene Press reports the Idaho Court of Appeals overturned a decision by First District Judge John Mitchell and sent the case back to district court in Kootenai County.  (Source: Pixabay)
The Coeur d'Alene Press reports the Idaho Court of Appeals overturned a decision by First District Judge John Mitchell and sent the case back to district court in Kootenai County. (Source: Pixabay)(KMVT)
Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 3:57 PM AKDT
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A federal judge has put the brakes on federal coronavirus relief funding for Alaska Native corporations for now. The decision Tuesday stems from lawsuits that several tribes filed against the Treasury Department seeking to keep the corporations from getting a share of $8 billion set aside for tribes.

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta in Washington, D.C., ruled against the tribes late last month. But he says he wrestled with the decision, and it deserves a closer look before a higher court.

He granted a request from the tribal plaintiffs to halt funding for the corporations while his decision is appealed. He has given the tribes until July 14 to challenge it.

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