Here are the materials in Miami Tribe of Oklahoma v. United States:
This appeal requires us to consider whether the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) properly exercised its discretion to reject a gift of property by a member of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma to the tribe.
James Smith wanted to transfer to the tribe a portion of his property interest in the Maria Christiana Reserve No. 35, located southwest of Kansas City, where the tribe has plans to develop gaming facilities. Federal law and restrictions on Smith’s fee interest required the BIA to approve any transfer. Citing concerns regarding fractionation of the land interests in the Reserve as well as the longrange best interests of Reserve landowners, the BIA denied Smith’s application to transfer the land. Miami Tribe challenges that decision. We hold the BIA properly exercised its discretion in denying the application.
This appeal also raises a novel jurisdictional question regarding our review of administrative decisions following a remand from district court. In this case, we conclude the government has not abandoned its right to challenge the district court’s remand order, even though the government substantially prevailed in the district court’s final judgment.
For the reasons set forth below, we find the district court erred in its remand order reversing the BIA’s denial of Smith’s application.