The Ute Indian Tribe's attorney has turned in his resignation to the business committee, but a committee member predicts that the board will not accept Gary J. Montana's resignation.
In a letter to the tribal business committee and tribal members this week, Montana said he has "no choice but to resign because of the political instability" within the tribe and his "inability to bring about ordinances and policies that are in line with the policies of the tribe's representative body."Montana's resignation is contingent upon the tribe agreeing to pay him $40,000 for the 11/2 years remaining on his three-year contract. He also wants the tribe to buy his $42,000 home, provide him with $2,000 in moving expenses, pay all legal costs he has incurred prior to the date of resignation and give him a positive letter of recommendation.
Montana says his resignation will become effective immediately once all the financial stipulations are met. Meantime, he has taken a five-week paid leave of absence and says Dan Israel of Golden, Colo., will serve as interim tribal attorney.
Business committee member Alvin Pinnecoose says Montana's resignation is politically motivated, and he expects the six-member committee would reject the resignation when it votes next week.
"It would take four affirmative votes to remove Montana," he said. "I don't foresee getting four affirmative votes."
Montana said he is unsure what he would do if the council rejects the resignation.