Elected citizens in compliance with Article V of the current Articles of Association shall serve as the Grievance Board. The Grievance Board consists of (3) three board members serving a term of (2) two years. The board considers written complaints of any alleging misconduct or other improper acts of any member of the Business Committee and if facts warrant, shall bring forth charges and the proper venue for procedures of General Council discipline. This includes calling and presiding over Special Meetings of the General Council and referral to Tribal Court.
- Board Chairwoman: Dianna Lopez
- Board Member: Mercedes Amavisca
- Board Member: Theresa Hernandez
- Grievance Board Liaison- Michael Linton
ARTICLE V. GRIEVANCE BOARD
- Grievance Board. The Band shall elect a Grievance Board (“Board”) consisting of three (3) Band members who are not members of the Business Committee. Board members shall serve two (2) year terms. They shall be elected by the General Council on the date established for the election of members of the Business Committee.
- Statement of Charges. The Board shall consider written complaints alleging misconduct or other improper acts by any member of the Business Committee that bring disrepute to the Band. If the Board determines that the alleged misconduct should move forward to a hearing, the Board shall provide the Chairman of the Business Committee with a written statement of chargers and detailed written summary of the evidence supporting each alleged charge of misconduct. The Chairman will have ten (10) business days to review and respond to the statement of charges, and decide whether or not to schedule a hearing date at which time such alleged charges can be adjudicated. Should the Chairman decide not to schedule a grievance hearing date, he/she must provide written notice to the Board as to why the decision was made not to schedule a grievance hearing. If the Business Committee Chairman decides not to schedule a grievance hearing, the Board Chairman shall have an opportunity at the next scheduled meeting of the General Council to present the statement of charges, a written summary of the evidence, and request the General Council to schedule a grievance hearing. The Business Committee Chairman shall also have the opportunity to explain why he/she did not call for a hearing. Should the General Council vote to not hold a hearing, the matter may not again be brought before the Board, Business Committee Chairman, and/or the General Council, unless information is later provided that warrants additional consideration.
- Notice. Whether determined by the Chairman of the Business Committee or the General Council, notice of any meeting involving a grievance hearing shall be announced at the General Council Meeting of the month prior to the scheduled hearing date. Additional notices of a hearing shall also be posted in a visible area at all Band offices, and may be posted on the Band’s website as well as other electronic media. Once a hearing date is scheduled, within ten (10) calendar days from the date a grievance hearing is scheduled, and no less than ten (10) calendar days from the date a grievance hearing is scheduled, the accused shall be provided written notice of the scheduled hearing date, (i) a copy of the statement of charges, and (ii) the Board’s written summary of evidence supporting such charges. At no time will a grievance hearing be conducted without proof of proper notice and the delivery, to the accused, of all the information identified in this Subpart C (i) & (ii).
- Communication during the Grievance Process. During the receipt and review process of a grievance, neither the accused nor any individual member of the Board may initiate or conduct a one-on-one communication that addresses any allegations contained in the complaint. Should such communications occur, any information obtained during such communication shall not be considered as evidence substantiating or refuting the complaint
- Conflicts of Interest. If a member of the Grievance Board is an immediate family member to any party, they shall recuse themselves from involvement in the entire grievance process. If this situation should occur, an alternate member shall be appointed by the General Council. An immediate family member is defined as a parent; sibling; child by blood, adoption, or marriage; spouse; grandparent or grandchild. Members of either party, as members of the General Council, shall be afforded the ability to participate in any vote of the General Council that may be conducted upon the conclusion of a hearing.
- Grievance Hearing. A grievance hearing shall be held before the General Council during a scheduled Special Meeting of the General Council. The Board at all times will conduct the hearing before the General Council. At no time during the hearing will any members of the General Council or the Business Committee be allowed to participate in any manner except as expressly stated in this section. Upon the conclusion of the hearing, the Board and the parties to the grievance will leave the room while the General Council deliberates. Deliberation shall not last for more than thirty (30) minutes, and during the deliberation time period, written questions may be submitted to the Board requesting clarification of a matter(s) specifically addressed during the hearing. Once deliberation is complete, the Board and the parties to the grievance shall return to the hearing room. The General Council will then render a final decision that shall be determined by a majority vote of all those members of the General Council that are present, and a quorum remains established. The accused Business Committee member shall be afforded the ability to vote. All votes must be made in person, and no proxy votes shall be considered or counted. The Secretary will record an official count of votes cast. The decision of those votes cast, and as counted by the Secretary, will be final absent a request for a recount by the accused, or any member of the Band then present. If a recount is requested, the Board Chairman shall call for one (1) recount. The Secretary shall record the votes cast, and record the results as final.
- Discipline. If the decision of the General Council is to discipline the accused, the General Council, in accordance with the Band’s Articles of Association, shall determine the appropriate discipline, and when any such determined discipline is to be rendered.
- Requests for Postponement. If either party involved in the grievance cannot attend the scheduled grievance hearing, that person shall immediately provide written notice to the Board Chairman with the reason for their absence. The Board Chairman will notify all Board members and proceed as follows:
- Cancel the scheduled hearing and reschedule at the next General Council meeting if the reason for the absence warrants a new hearing date; or
- provide written notification of the Board’s denial of the request, and proceed with the hearing with or without the presence of the accused.