Law Seminars International Presents:

A national comprehensive conference on the unique issues for

Tribal Natural Resource Damage Assessments

Tips for best practices plus tools for negotiating technical solutions and quantifying damages

May 23 & 24, 2019

Las Vegas, NV
Regrettably, we've had to cancel this program

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Program Overview

Who Should Attend

Tribal representatives, in-house and private attorneys, consultants, corporate managers, governmental representatives, and others who are involved in Tribal natural resource management

Why You Should Attend

Tribal Natural Resource Damage (NRD) assessment and restoration remains one of the most fascinating, and still underdeveloped areas of environmental law. Particularly in today's political climate, changes in policy, priorities, and funding are impacting sites where Tribes have active or potential claims for injuries to their natural resources. Finally, you will receive information on how to use accounting systems to optimize your Tribe's ability to recover both its costs and damages.

Participate in our discussions, interact with the faculty in question and answer sessions after each presentation and at breaks. We hope you will also stay for the reception at the end of the first day.

~ David F. Askman, Esq. of The Askman Law Firm and Tim Kent, of Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma, Program Co-Chairs

What You Will Learn

  • DOI's proposed changes to damage assessment rules
  • Developing effective cost recovery programs
  • Interplay between treaty rights and NRD claims
  • Incorporating climate change adaptation into restoration planning
  • Effective management of state and federal trustee relationships
  • Incorporating cultural values into restoration activities
  • Developing Tribal legal structures for dealing with resource damages
  • Use of accounting systems for maximizing recovery

What Attendees Have Said About Similar Programs

  • "Great presentations w/ great material. I appreciate the interaction w/ the audience."
  • "Program felt particularly dynamic and varied this year."
  • "Overall, a good & necessary conference."
  • "Overall - Very Good Work."
  • "Very interesting presentations, thank you!"

Agenda Day 1

8:30 am

Registration Opens

9:00 am

Introduction & Overview

David F. Askman, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
The Askman Law Firm / Denver, CO

Tim Kent , Program Co-Chair, Environmental Director
Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma / Quapaw, OK

9:15 am

Proposed Changes to the Federal Damage Assessment Rules

The United States Department of the Interior's proposed changes and its request for comments on them

Robert E. Unsworth , Principal
Industrial Economics, Inc. / Cambridge, MA

10:00 am

Gaining Leverage by Developing a Legal Structure to Deal with Natural Resource Damages Under Tribal Law

Key questions to resolve, like where and over whom you have jurisdiction, and provisions to include; tips for structuring the statute or ordinance and incorporating the most effective language

David F. Askman, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
The Askman Law Firm / Denver, CO

10:30 am


10:45 am

Developing and Refining Environmental Cost Recovery Programs to Make Them More Effective

Tips for incentivizing prior owners and operators, arrangers, and transporters to increase the chances that they will pay a fair share of investigation and remediation costs

Michael D. Goodstein, Esq.
Van Ness Feldman / Washington, DC

Jason B. Aamodt, Esq.
Indian and Environmental Law Group / Tulsa, OK

12:00 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:15 pm

Current Hot Issues in Tribal NRDA

NRD and Tribal treaty rights: The Culverts Case and the resulting requirement to repair or replace culverts to provide salmon with access to spawning grounds

Connie Sue M. Martin, Esq.
Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt / Seattle, WA

Incorporating climate change adaptation into restoration planning

Kaylene Ritter, Ph.D. , Principal
Abt Associates / Boulder, CO

Raymond J. Martinez , Director, Department of Environmental and Cultural Preservation
Pueblo de San Ildefonso / Santa Fe, NM

Essential elements for effective Tribal cultural restoration programs

Barbara Tarbell , Manager, Akwesasne Cultural Restoration Program
Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe / Akwesasne, NY

3:15 pm


3:30 pm

Tips for Effectively Managing Tribal, State, and Federal Trustee Relationships

How can tribal trustees best navigate the relationship with various trustees at a given site where natural resource injuries may have occurred?

Tim Kent , Program Co-Chair, Moderator
Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma / Quapaw, OK

Jack Bell , Director, Environmental Restoration and Waste Management Program
Nez Perce Tribe / Lapwai, ID

Robert E. Unsworth , Principal
Industrial Economics, Inc. / Cambridge, MA

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception for Faculty and Attendees

Friday, May 24, 2019

9:00 am

Valuing Invaluable Resources. How to Assess the Unique "Value" of Services Lost and Incorporate Cultural Values into Restoration Activities

Tribal perspectives on practical strategies for applying the techniques and tools

Nadia Martin , Senior Associate
Industrial Economics, Inc. / Cambridge, MA

Potentially responsible party perspective

Theodore Tomasi, Ph.D. , Vice President and Director of National Practices
Cardno, Inc. / Newark, DE

10:30 am


10:45 am

Avoid Leaving Money on the Table: The Role of Accounting Systems for Maximizing Recovery

Legal perspective on what costs are recoverable

Brian J. Cleary, Esq. , Principal
The Cleary Law Group / Hayden, ID

Effective use of accounting systems and techniques to maximize recovery

Wiley Wright , Practice Leader - Construction and Environmental Advisory Services
BDO / McLean, VA

12:00 pm

Evaluations and Adjourn

Faculty Bios

David F. Askman, David F. Askman, Program Co-Chair and founder of The Askman Law Firm focuses on Native people's law and works on a variety of environmental and natural resource issues. Those issues range from cleanup to regulatory enforcement to restoration of injured natural resources.

Tim Kent, Tim Kent, Program Co-chair, is the Environmental Director for the Quapaw Nation. He has been the Nation's Project Manager for the largest Superfund site in the nation, Tar Creek, for almost 17 years. Before coming to the Quapaw Nation, he was a professional Engineering Geologist for various engineering consulting firms.

Jason B. Aamodt Jason B. Aamodt is a Partner at Indian and Environmental Law Group. He focuses on environmental litigation and Indian trust law. He also teaches International Environmental Law, Water Law, Natural Resource Law at the University of Tulsa College of Law.

Jack Bell Jack Bell is Director of the Environmental Restoration and Waste Management Program for the Nez Perce Tribe. In that role, he serves as the Tribe's NRDA Coordinator for the Hanford cleanup.

Brian J. Cleary Brian J. Cleary is a Principal in The Cleary Law Group P.C. He has over twenty years of experience representing Indian tribes in development and litigation of CERCLA cost-recovery and natural resource damage claims, as well as other matters, including submerged lands ownership, water and air regulation, water rights, hydropower licensing, gaming, and taxation.

Michael D. Goodstein Michael D. Goodstein is a Partner at Van Ness Feldman and focuses on issues arising under federal, state, local, and Tribal environmental laws, natural resource and property damage, and related insurance coverage issues.

Connie Sue M. Martin Connie Sue M. Martin is a Shareholder at Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt. She helps Indian tribes, ports, companies of all sizes, and individuals, address environmental contamination and restore injured natural resources.

Nadia Martin Nadia Martin is a Senior Associate at Industrial Economics, Inc. She specializes in the assessment of ecological impacts resulting from physical and chemical stressors to natural resources as well as ecological restoration.

Raymond J. Martinez is Director, Department of Environmental and Cultural Preservation (DECP) for the Pueblo de San Ildefonso. One of the Department's top priorities is continued monitoring of chromium groundwater contamination.

Kaylene Ritter, Ph.D., Kaylene Ritter, Ph.D., is a Principal at Abt Associates. Her areas of expertise include Tribal risk assessment and climate change adaptation planning.

Barbara Tarbell Barbara Tarbell is Manager for the Akwesasne Cultural Restoration (ACR) Program for the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe. It is the first of its kind to fully support a Master-apprenticeship style approach to cultural restoration.

Theodore Tomasi, Ph.D., Theodore Tomasi, Ph.D., is Vice President and Director of National Practices at Cardno, Inc. He has specialized in management of natural resource damage liabilities using restoration-based and monetary evaluations in assessments of impacts to ground water, oil spills, and complex contaminated sites.

Robert E. Unsworth Robert E. Unsworth is a Principal at Industrial Economics, Inc. He focuses on applied natural resource and environmental economics.

Wiley Wright Wiley Wright is the Practice Leader - Construction and Environmental Advisory Services at BDO. He has extensive experience in providing expert and consulting services for environmental and natural resource damage cases.


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Embassy Suites by Hilton Las Vegas

4315 Swenson Street in Las Vegas, NV 89119
(702) 795-2800

The conference will be held at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Las Vegas at 4315 Swenson Street in Las Vegas, NV 89119. Lodging is available at a number of nearby hotels.
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