GTC’s Way Or The Highway

At the December 9, 2013 Community Discussion regarding Frank Cornelius’ successful petition for General Tribal Council to direct the Oneida Business Committee to dissolve Oneida Seven Generations Corporation, Tribal CFO Larry Barton said the following:

…I know that people in the community want to know principally, y’know, who the Oneida whatever-it-is out in New Jersey or Delaware, y’know. I’d like to know, too…but, again, that goes back to governance. If it’s required upon the corporation to disclose who we’re doing business with that needs to be conveyed very clear as a matter of law and direction. So, the [GTC] can take action to require that. Now, if there are, I’ll call it ‘confidentiality provisions’ with some of our partners, whether they’re over visibly at Bellin or Schneider or whoever they are, I can’t speak to that. Those are terms of the agreements that the [OSGC] Board agreed to and that might limit their ability to share it with the [GTC] who we are partners with.  That was their prerogative at that time but if, again, there’s a law that says, ‘put all the cards on the table, name names,’ you as the membership, you as the GTC can invoke that, and I think we’d all like that. …I just go on face-value that we’re dealing with ethical, um, good-standing business people over there, but that might not be the fact of the matter. We don’t know, but you hope that the corporations execute their own due diligence.

Barton’s comments were directed at questions regarding why the Tribe is supposedly being denied access to financial records of 51% OSGC-owned Oneida-Kodiak Construction, LLC, by 49% shareholder Alliance GC, LLC, which was formerly known as Alliance Construction and Design, LLC.

According to the website of the Wisconsin Dept. of Financial Institutions, the ‘Registered Agent’ for Alliance GC, LLC, is Alliance Construction and Design Inc., and the ‘Registered Agent’ for Alliance Construction and Design, Inc., is Todd Parczick, and all three are listed as being at the address 1030 Orlando Drive, DePere, WI.

Todd Parczick and Alliance Executives

Todd Parczick and Alliance Executives

Mandy M. Schneider

Mandy M. Schneider

Todd Parczick appears to have some relationship with Mandy M. Schneider who is the Oneida Tribe’s Community Prevention and Intervention Coordinator and is currently working with the Oneida Police Department’s Anti-Gang Task Force, which perhaps explains why the BC hasn’t pursued legal action to retrieve Oneida-Kodiak’s financial records which are in fact Tribal property. CFO Barton stated at the December 5 & 9, 2013 Community Discussions that OSGC had handed over all of the company’s books to their business partner and was now being denied access due to an ongoing “dispute” regarding the shoddy work performed by Oneida-Kodiak Construction at the Anna John Resident Centered Care Community building.

Larry Barton’s comment that he just assumes that people are ethical seems to be in reference to OSGC’s business partners, but Larry should know that perhaps the “dispute” between OSGC and Alliance has to do with the fact that OSGC has not been ethical, as demonstrated by Brown County Judge Marc A. Hammer’s January 9, 2013 decision that Green Bay acted within its rights to revoke a Conditional Use Permit for the waste incinerator that OSGC misrepresented to city officials and which Alliance/Oneida-Kodiak was supposed to build.

As Frank Cornelius reminded Larry at the Community Discussion, some of the laws Barton said GTC needs to pass in order to have transparency of business partnerships and to ‘name names’ have already been put forward by GTC. More on that below.

In response to the letter by Frank Cornelius that Oneida Eye posted on January 15, 2014 the Elder Advisor to the Tribal Chair and publisher of the Oneida Times, Yvonne Metivier, wrote this in an email to the publisher of the Oneida Eye:

The letter says there will be a lawsuit. Fascinating. And yet there is no info on lawsuit: who is filing, where, and on what grounds. Lawsuits are very interesting. What is the lawsuit[?] It leads me to wonder if there is really a lawsuit or just babble bluster. …It is a shame that Frank was unwilling to work with the BC on the directive from the GTC to dissolve [OSGC]. …[H]e is not finishing the work. Puzzling. …[I]t is quite comical to hear and read from the writing that if you do not do it my way, then you have violated the Constitution, etc.

The foolishness of Yvonne Metivier’s fluff pieces in the Oneida Times about Ed Delgado being a ‘sober’ and ‘honest’ Chair while he lies about GTC members in his Kalihwisaks column and demands that GTC reconsider its vote to dissolve OSGC, and while Yvonne falsely claims that Frank is somehow ‘unwilling’ to ‘finish the work’ of dissolving OSGC when all Frank has asked for is airfare or to be able to appoint another GTC member as his representative if the BC doesn’t want to cover that paltry travel expense, underscores the cognitive dissonance of Metivier and the Oneida Times.

Who cares if a bottle of booze never touches Ed’s lips when he drives up on roundabouts, leaves bullets in tribal vehicles and does a bump-and-run on a mother and her children at the ‘Breakfast with Santa’?

Obviously Frank Cornelius will refuse to bend over and take it up the keister from the BC, the Chief Counsel, and OSGC, unlike Ed Delgado for whom it’s a regular routine.

The Oneida Constitution makes it clear that General Tribal Council is in control, not the Chairman nor the Business Committee and certainly not Tribally-chartered corporations or their subsidiaries, and while Ed does have the right to call for a Special GTC Meeting it doesn’t seem such a meeting has ever been called by any Tribal Chair to immediately try to convince GTC to change their votes made in self-defense against the BC & a Tribally-chartered corporation.

In other words, according to the Oneida Constitution it’s GTC’s way or the highway (more like the ditch… ma’am.)

Previous attempts by GTC to rein in OSGC and demand greater accountability from the BC seem to have been thwarted.

For example, GTC Resolution 11-15-08-A says:

Now Therefore Be It Resolved, that no committee or tribal attorney may force an Oneida committee, board or commission to keep secret from other tribal members information that is not of a confidential nature or force them to sign an agreement to serve on a committee, board or commission of the Oneida Tribe.

What constitutes “a confidential nature”? CFO Barton seems to think that it can include aspects of business partnerships and financial transactions between OSGC and outside companies such as Bellin or Schneider or Alliance GC/Construction and Design.

However, GTC has passed and the Tribal Secretary certified GTC Resolution 11-15-08-C which plainly says:

Be It Further Resolved,  that no “agent” of the Tribe shall enter any agreement with any corporation that prohibits full disclosure of all transactions (receipts and expenditures and the nature of such funds) and that such an agreement is not binding to the Tribe, and

Be It Finally Resolved, that the Oneida General Council hereby directs implementation of this resolution at the next regular Oneida General Tribal Council meeting or at such special meeting of the Oneida General Tribal Council whereby a Treasurer’s report is requested.

Therefore, if OSGC has agreements or contracts with Bellin or Schneider or Alliance or any other company that requires anything less than “full disclosure of all transactions” those agreements would be null and void in accordance with GTC’s Constitutional right to require implementation. Yet that resolution does not seem to have been implemented.

What should the penalties be for failure to implement GTC Resolutions?

GTC member Madelyn Genskow put forward GTC Resolution 11-15-08-D which said this:

Now Therefore Be It Resolved, that the Oneida Business Committee shall see to it that all Oneida General Tribal directives back to 1994 plus Resolution 7-6-93-A must be carried out by the end of fiscal year 2010.

Be It Further Resolved, Oneida General Tribal Council directs the Legislative Operating Committee to develop an amendment to the removal law which identifies that an elected official is subject to removal for failure to carry out a Oneida General Tribal Council directive and that this be presented to the Oneida General Tribal Council no later than the July 2009 semi-annual meeting.

Unfortunately that attempt to enact Removal Law amendments failed when it was brought back to GTC at the July 6, 2009 Semi-Annual Meeting.

Perhaps now GTC will recognize the wisdom of Madelyn’s endeavors to enact accountability measures against the BC when they fail to follow GTC directives. For example, the current unwillingness of Tribal Chair Delgado and the BC to reveal what Gene Keluche and Sagestone Management, LLC, are being paid even though Ed told attendees of the January 4, 2014 ‘Saturday Mornings with the BC’ meeting that such information would be revealed at the January 8, 2014 BC Regular Meeting yet the information was withheld while Ed maneuvers to undermine GTC’s directive to dissolve OSGC.

Now there’s talk that Gene Keluche is only there to ‘hold down the fort’ and it won’t be until an outside corporate attorney is chosen by Chief Counsel Jo Anne House that the real work of dissolving OSGC will begin. If the BC’s choice of Gene Keluche is any indication it seems most likely that the selection will based on who they know on the BC and among other Tribal (mis)leaders, not what they know or have proven they can do.

Will Frank Cornelius and other GTC members have to file a lawsuit and appeal to the BIA to corral or remove Tribal Chair Delgado and other BC members so that GTC can finally receive full access to complete disclosure of financial records and business relationships, as well as to uncover any corporate malfeasance and negligence by OSGC Board members and executives in order to hold those individuals personally responsible for lying to the Tribe, the public and elected officials in Green Bay?

Time will tell, and the clock is ticking.


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