(Neb)-Whiteclay Task Force Bill Advances Listen
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - The Nebraska Legislature has given first-round approval to the latest effort to deal with the issue of alcohol sales in Whiteclay.
The bill by Lincoln Senator Patty Pansing Brooks, who visited Whiteclay and the reservation last summer, creates a legislative task force to examine public health problems in Whiteclay and develop solutions.
The 4 beer stores in Whiteclay sold the equivalent of 3.5 million cans of beer in 2015, nearly all of it to residents of the adjacent Pine Ridge Reservation, which although officially alcohol-free suffers from high levels of alcoholism and alcohol-related ailments.
Brooks says she introduced the bill because the alcohol sales issue and resulting problems have festered for too long...dating back more than a century to 1904 when President Teddy Roosevelt removed a 50-mile buffer zone from around the reservation.
Brooks worked on the bill with Senator Tom Brewer of Gordon, whose district includes Whiteclay and who is a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe.
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