David Sommerstein
North Country Public Radio

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe has bought 41.5 acres of land adjacent to its transfer station on State Route 37 in upstate New York.

In a press release, the tribe says the land in the town of Fort Convington is part of historic Mohawk land boundaries as set aside by federal treaty with the U.S. in 1796. The land was purchased from a tribal citizen for $166,000.

In 2014, St. Lawrence County signed an agreement with the tribe to settle the decades-old Mohawk claim to 12,000 acres of land. But Franklin County never signed off. The tribe says it may use federal policy to make this parcel part of the reservation in the future.

“In the absence of a land claim settlement agreement, the Tribe may apply to have the land taken into federal trust for exercising tribal jurisdiction and authority in a manner that preserves and promotes the long-term interest of the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe," the tribal council said in the release.

The tribe says the land may be used to build a business park or for single-family homes.

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