Site sacred to Sioux takes step toward federal trust

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - The Pennington County Commission will support placing a South Dakota site sacred to the Great Sioux Nation into a federal trust.

In 2012, Sioux tribes raised $9 million with the help of celebrities including P. Diddy and Bette Midler to buy a 3-quare-mile tract in the Black Hills known as Pe’ Sla (pay shlaw) from private landowners. The tribes want to put the land in trust with the federal government to be held on behalf of tribal members.

Commissioners on Tuesday voted 3-2 to release the land from the county’s tax roll and to send a letter of support to the U.S. Interior Department.

An attorney for the tribes says they have worked out service agreements for the land since it would stop generating tax revenue if place into trust.

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