Catawbas fire chief after questions about funds

Rock Hill, South Carolina (AP) September 2010

The Catawba Indian Nation’s general council has voted to remove Chief Donald Rogers after questions were raised about the spending of tribal funds.

The Herald of Rock Hill reported the council voted 72-32 to remove Rogers after a petition was signed by 180 members of the Catawba Nation.

The petition accuses Rodgers of at least six infractions, including receiving pay raises and using tribal funds to pay for health benefits to him and his family totaling more than $8,000 a year without getting council approval.

Rodgers says he has documents to defend himself against the allegations, which he says are a personal vendetta. Rodgers says he has made a number of improvements for the tribe in the past three years.

He says the general council’s vote to remove him violates the tribe’s constitution.