Bois Forte council censures representative

Nett Lake, Minnesota (AP) 10-07

A member of the Bois Forte Reservation Tribal Council has been censured after his colleagues said he violated ethical standards.

Mark Drift caused a person to feel “oppressed, persecuted, or humiliated,” according to a news release issued by the tribal council.

A tribal government employee filed a complaint last month that was forwarded to the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe. That organization delivered its report Monday, and the Bois Forte council voted 3-1 Tuesday to censure Drift after reviewing the report.

“For the good of the Band, we need to close the book on this matter,” Tribal Chairman Kevin Leecy said in a written statement. “For the best interests of the Band, I hope Representative Drift uses this as a wake-up call.”

Drift has denied the charges, saying they are an attempt to defame him and limit his term in office, which is set to expire in about two years. He said the charges were of sexual misconduct and came after a minor verbal error he made during a Sept. 5 special meeting of the council in Nett Lake.

Nett Lake is about 105 miles northwest of Duluth.