United States GAO General Accounting Office Washington, D.C. 20548 Accounting and Information Management Division E&z76639 May 23, 1997 The Honorable Ben Nighthorse Campbell Chairman The Honorable Daniel K Inouye Vice Chair Committee on Indian Affairs United States Senate Subject: Indian Trust Funds.. Tribal * Account Holders’ReslDonsesTV . . . Reconctiation ResulQ This letter responds to your April 24, 1997, request that we provide information on the status of account holders’responses to the Department of the Interior’s tribal trust fund reconciliation project results. As of May 6, 1997, Interior had sent reports on reconciliation results to 310 account holders whose tribal trust fund accounts contained balances between July 1, 1973, and September 30, 1996. Interior asked those account holders to return attestation statements indicating whether the account holders accept or dispute the reconciliation results. Interior previously reported to the Congressthe status of tribal trust fund account holders’responsesas of April 30, 1996, and aa of November 1, 1996. Information we obtained from Interior’s Office of the Special Trustee (OST) indicates that of the 310 account holders to which Interior sent reconaon reports, 139 had responded to Interior as of May 6, 1997. Of the account holders that responded,41 accepted the reconciliation results, 61 disputed the reconciliation results, and 47 requested more time and/or a meeting with OST 4 officials to consider whether to accept or dispute the reconciliation results. Information on the status of tribal trust fund account holders’responses as of April 30, 1996,November 1,.1996,and May 6, 1997,is provided in an enclosure to this letter. We obtained but, as agreed with your staff, did not independently verify the information on the status of account holders’responses provided or previously reported by OST. GAOIAIMD-97-102RTribes’Reconciliation Responses L. . . B-276639 Pleasecontact me at (202) 612-8341or Gayle Fischer, Assistant Director, at (202) 612-9677, if you or your staff have any questions conckning this information. Linda M. Calbom Director, Civil Audits Enclkre GAOLUMD-97-102RTribes’Reconciliation Responses ENCLOSURE ENCLOSURE NUMBER OF TRIBAL TRUST FUND ACCOUNT HOL,DE~ AND TYPE OF RESPONSETO THE RECONCILIATIONRESULTS The following table shows the status as of April 30, 1996,November 1, 1996, and May 6, 1997, of tribal trust fund account holders’responsesto Interior’s reconciliation reports. As can be seen in the table totals, OST sent reconciliation reports to additional account holders between April 30, 1996,the first status date, and May 6, 1997, the most recent status date. OST officials told us that they currently have no followup efforts underway to obtain responses from the 171 account holders that have not yet responded. The table does not include information on account balancesbecause this information was not readily available.’ We did not independentlyveri@ the information, which we obtained from OST. uested more time that received reconciliation report8 (913899) ‘As agreed with Committee staff, we asked OST to provide information on the dollar balances for each of the four tribal account holder response categories shown in the table. However, OST officials told us that they were unable to provide reliable dollar balance information in time to meet our reporting needs because their resources are currently devoted to supporting Interior’s efforts on (1) litigation related to Individual Indian Monies (IIM) account balancesand (2) a legislative proposal for settlement of tribal trust fund account balances. 3 GAO/AIMD-97-102RTribes’Reconciliation Responses : I . .- Ordering Information The first copy of each GAO report and testimony is free. Additional copies are $2 each. 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Indian Trust Funds: Tribal Account Holders' Responses to Reconciliation Results
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1997-05-23.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)