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Blackfeet schedule May vote on new constitution

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KALISPELL, Mont. - Blackfeet tribal members have a chance to vote on a new constitution and form of government in May.

The effort to change the tribe's government structure began two years ago after the Blackfeet Tribal Business Council splintered into two factions, leading to government shutdowns. In some cases employees went unpaid for weeks.

Reports say the proposed constitution calls for a three-pronged government to replace the tribal council. There would be an executive branch to manage day-to-day operations, a 13-member legislative branch and an independent judicial branch.

In the coming weeks the Bureau of Indian Affairs will send a voter registration packet to every Blackfeet tribal member along with copies of the current and proposed constitution. Those who register will get a ballot for the May 22 election.

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