Law Seminars International Presents: A Two-Day Comprehensive Conference on

Tribal Lending and Financial Institutions
Updates on legal and policy developments; practical tips and strategies

June 19 & 20, 2014
Mystic Lake Casino Hotel in Prior Lake, MN

Who Should Order This Homestudy

Attorneys, Tribal representatives, industry executives and governmental officials

Why You Should Order

Tribal sovereignty is dependent upon Tribes' ability to manage and control their financial affairs. With Tribes increasingly involved in complex commercial ventures, effective financial management is becoming both more difficult and more important to Tribal economic success.

This conference explores the complex interplay between federal and state regulations, the formation and operation of Tribal financial institutions, and economic development. Our distinguished faculty includes respected and experienced practitioners with expertise in Indian Law and finance issues as well as representatives from Tribes and the financial services industry. These thought leaders will share their insights and experiences around leasing, financing, taxation, regulatory trends and commercial development on Tribal lands.

Attendees will learn effective strategies for financing economic development activities and the regulatory framework for setting up Tribal financial institutions. Special attention will be given to common project types, including traditional and online gaming, oil and gas exploration and green technology projects. Federal regulatory issues, including those surrounding taxation, the HEARTH Act and President Obama's new Promise Zones Initiative will also be covered in detail. Don't miss out on this valuable opportunity to hear practical advice on the complex issues surrounding Tribal lending and finance.

Program Co-Chairs: Troy A. Eid, Esq., Greenberg Traurig, LLP and Thomas B. Heffelfinger, Esq., Best & Flanagan LLP

What You Will Learn


Thursday, June 19, 2014

8:00 am

Registration Opens

8:30 am

Introduction & Overview

Thomas B. Heffelfinger, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Best & Flanagan LLP / Minneapolis, MN

Jennifer H. Weddle, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Greenberg Traurig, LLP / Denver, CO

8:45 am

Special Opening Address: President Obama's Promise Zones Initiative

Implementation strategy for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma as one of the first five zones: How the Department of the Interior expects the program to work in Indian country

Jonodev Osceola Chaudhuri, Esq., Acting Chair
National Indian Gaming Commission / Washington, DC

9:15 am

Sovereignty Issues in Tribal Economic Development

Recent cases and other developments in commercial law as it relates to private sector activities on Tribal lands and Tribal activities off reservation: Immunity waivers, choice of forum, sue and be sued clauses; arbitration for dispute resolution

Robert L. Gips, Esq.
Drummond Woodsum / Portland, ME

10:00 am


10:15 am

HEARTH Act and Its Impact on Leasing Tribal Lands for Commercial Activity

Applicability for the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (HEARTH) Act to commercial development; types of leases covered by the Act; processes for Tribes to develop and implement regulations; BOI vs. Tribal approval of leases

Brian L. Pierson, Esq.
Godfrey & Kahn S.C. / Milwaukee, WI

11:00 am

Tax Considerations for Planning Tribal Economic Development and Activities

Overview of current federal, Tribal and state taxation authority on Indian reservations and their applicability to Tribal commercial activities off reservation

Vanya Hogen Moline, Esq.
Hogen Adams PLLC / St. Paul, MN

Tribal tax policy, administration and enforcement issues: Setting up Tribal tax codes and administrative machinery; negotiating state compacts; practical considerations for raising Tribal revenues through taxation of commercial activities

James C. Diracles, Esq.
Best & Flanagan LLP / Minneapolis, MN

Lenor A. Scheffler, Esq.
Best & Flanagan LLP / Minneapolis, MN

12:30 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:45 pm

Financing Options for Tribal Economic Activities

Joint ventures and other creative alternatives: How to get federal support or at least get the government out of the way

Melissa Robertson, Esq., Vice President and General Counsel
Sovereign Finance LLC / Portland, OR

3:00 pm


3:15 pm

Setting Up Tribal Financial Institutions: Banking

Federal requirements for consumer lenders

Andrew M. Smith, Esq.
Morrison & Foerster LLP / Washington, DC

Federal and state regulatory structures for banks and how they differ for Tribal banks

Jennifer H. Weddle, Esq.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP / Denver, CO

How federal and state consumer watchdog agencies have responded to Tribal internet lending operations and the lessons to date

Karrie S. Wichtman, Esq.
Rosette, LLP / Mattawan, MI

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception for Faculty and Attendees

Sponsored by Best & Flanagan LLP and Greenberg Traurig LLP


Friday, June 20, 2014

8:30 am

Financing Options (cont'd)

Conventional bank financing: Update on the current environment for Tribal borrowing

Steven Paul McSloy, Esq.
Dentons / New York, NY

Opportunities with non-bank finance partners

Joseph Dean, CFO
Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community / Prior Lake, MN

10:00 am


10:15 am

Strategies for Evaluating and Pursuing Financial Opportunities Beyond Gaming and Lending Operations

Developing an effective organizational structure and strategic economic development plan

Andrew Adams, III, Esq.
Hogen Adams PLLC / St. Paul, MN

Venture capital funds: Considerations for Tribes when investing or acquiring non-gaming businesses

Brett D. Koeller, Esq.
Godfrey & Kahn S.C. / Milwaukee, WI

11:45 am

Lunch (on your own)

1:00 pm

Setting Up Other Tribal Financial Institutions

Lending entities that do not take deposits

Eric Lochen, Esq.
Lochen Law Offices, PLLC / Minneapolis, MN

1:45 pm

Online Consumer Lending Operations: Uncharted Waters Requiring Careful Navigation

General regulatory requirements for conducting financial transactions on the internet; lessons from the online gambling world

Jennifer H. Weddle, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Greenberg Traurig, LLP / Denver, CO

2:30 pm

Evaluations and Adjourn



Regular tuition for this program is $895 with a group rate of $670 each for two or more registrants from the same firm. For Tribes and other government employees, we offer a special rate of $595. For students, people in their job for less than a year, and public interest NGO's, our rate is $447.50. All rates include admission to all seminar sessions, food and beverages at breaks, and all course materials. Make checks payable to Law Seminars International.

Financial aid is available to those who qualify. Contact our office for more information.

Continuing Education Credits

Live credits: This program qualifies for 10.75 MN CLE credits. Upon request, we will apply for, or help you apply for, CLE credits in other states and other types of credits.


There is a $25 cancellation fee for Course Materials orders and $50 for Homestudy orders

Faculty Bios

Thomas B. Heffelfinger, Program Co-Chair, partner, Best & Flanagan LLP, investigates, prosecutes and defends white collar criminal misconduct and violent crimes, and focuses on issues facing Native American communities.

Jennifer H. Weddle, shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP, and Co-Chair of the American Indian Law Practice Group, focuses on Tribal jurisdiction and natural resources development on Tribal lands.

Andrew Adams, III, member, Hogen Adams PLLC, and a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and member of the Tallahassee Wvkokaye Ceremonial Grounds, is experienced in federal Indian law, Tribal constitutional law, Tribal governance, gaming, financial transactions, and tax issues related to Tribal governments. He is the Chair of the Federal Bar Association Indian Law Section.

Jonodev Osceola Chaudhuri (Muscogee Creek), Acting Chair for the National Indian Gaming Commission, is responsible for regulating and ensuring the integrity of Indian gaming facilities.

James C. Diracles, member of the Business Law and Native American Law practice areas, Best & Flanagan LLP, focuses on financing, securities, mergers and acquisitions, general corporate law, and Native American law including tax, financing and business development matters.

Robert L. Gips, partner, Drummond Woodsum, is special counsel on Indian affairs and corporate matters. He serves as legal counsel and as a key business and financial advisor to Indian tribes.

Brett D. Koeller, shareholder, Godfrey & Kahn S.C., is a member of the Corporate Practice Group. His practice focuses on buy- and sell-side acquisitions involving strategic and financial buyers and public and privately held sellers, as well as Tribal corporations, and on debt and equity financings.

Eric Lochen, managing partner, Lochen Law Offices, PLLC, represents Tribes and Tribal entities in Indian gaming law, Tribal housing law, economic development, Tribal prosecution, Tribal election law, business transactions and internal investigations. He is General Counsel to the St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin.

Steven Paul McSloy, partner in the Native American Law and Policy practice at Dentons, advises clients on Native American law, gaming, corporate finance, capital markets and joint ventures. He has been involved in many of the largest and most complex financing transactions in Indian country.

Vanya Hogen Moline, member, Hogen Adams PLLC, maintains an active transactional practice, focusing primarily on Indian gaming and Tribal financing. She has handled multi-million-dollar litigation and arbitration matters in federal, state and Tribal courts.

Brian L. Pierson, shareholder, leads Godfrey & Kahn S.C.'s Indian Nations Law Team and assists Tribes in implementing strategies that strengthen Tribal sovereignty, with a focus on business development, environmental protection, renewable energy and housing development.
Full bio and contact info for Brian L. Pierson at Godfrey & Kahn S.C.

Melissa Robertson, Vice President and General Counsel, Sovereign Finance LLC, focuses on Indian law with emphasis on project finance and commercial transactions in Indian country. She works with Tribal governments and business enterprises on financings.

Lenor A. Scheffler, member and Chair of the Native American Law Section, Best & Flanagan LLP, practices in the areas of federal Indian law, Tribal law, tax, governance, gaming law and regulatory, Tribal financing and business law.

Andrew M. Smith, partner, Morrison & Foerster LLP, concentrates on retail financial services, credit reporting, privacy, technology and e-commerce issues. He assists banks, insurers, non-bank lenders, credit bureaus, technology companies, and their vendors with regulatory compliance, litigation and transactional matters.

Karrie S. Wichtman, partner, Rosette, LLP, concentrates on Tribal sovereignty, drafting and application of Tribal codes and court rules, policy and procedure development.

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