Idaho Tribes: Tell Counties Not To Tax Indian Land

Feb 11, 2013

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho tribes want the Legislature to tell counties to quit taxing tribal government land on the state's reservations.

Helo Hancock, a lobbyist for the Coeur d'Alene Tribe in northern Idaho, told the House Revenue and Taxation Committee Monday the issue first arose in 2006.

Then, Idaho tribes received a "flurry of assessments" on land that had once been homesteaded, but later re-acquired by tribal governments.

Hancock says land owned by tribal governments should be treated the same way as county-, state- and federal land and exempted from property taxes.

He says the Coeur d'Alene Tribe has failed to work out a solution with Kootenai and Benewah counties, so far, so it wants legislators to intervene.

The total at stake is about $303,000 in assessments annually, for all five Idaho tribes.