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Coeur d'Alene Tribe, Idaho

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The tribe alerted real estate agents not to assume new docks will be allowed on waterfront property sold within its northern Idaho reservation. "Current tribal policy is to discourage new lake encroachment permits,'' Phillip Cernera, tribal restoration coordinator, wrote in a letter to the Coeur d'Alene Association of Realtors. He said July 13 the policy is to encourage multifamily use of docks. "I'm hoping to meet with all Realtors in Benewah and Kootenai County and say, 'Here are our regulations and policies and we will work with anyone,''' he said. The U.S. Supreme Court recently upheld a 1998 federal court ruling affirming tribal ownership of the southern third of the lake and the St. Joe River within the reservation boundaries. Most existing docks under state permit will be approved by the tribe for a tribal encroachment permit, if certain standards and conditions are met and fees are paid, Cernera said. Tribal permit fees are identical to state fees on the rest of the lake, but it also assesses an annual lease fee. "The message the tribe wants people to understand is that all of us need to make sure the lake is healthy and that it is there to be enjoyed,'' tribal spokesman Bob Bostwick said.