JC Seneca to Run for Seneca President

JC Seneca

JC Seneca

Promising transparency and a new path that provides hope, faith and trust in government, businessman JC Seneca of the Cattaraugus Territory announced today that he is running for president of the Seneca Nation of Indians in the election scheduled for Nov. 1.

Seneca, 56, chairman of the One Nation Organization, is the only announced candidate so far to replace outgoing President Maurice “Mo” John, a member of the Seneca Party like his predecessor, Barry Snyder.

“Under the past two administrations, our people have  been kept in the dark,” Seneca said in a telephone interview this week.  “People know that I am a straight shooter, they have approached me about their concerns, and they are tired of being suppressed like they have been for the last four years.”

Seneca said he is ready to “give the people a voice in government,” and promises transparency “in how our government operates,” saying “whether it is good or bad, the people deserve the truth.”

Seneca, a businessman for 29 years, will be making his third bid to lead the Seneca Nation, having run previously in 1992 and 2000.  In addition to gas and cigarette sales, Seneca operates a trucking company that hauls motor fuel and is a wholesale operator providing products to the Cattaraugus and Allegany Territories that make up the Seneca Nation.

He lists among his top priorities taking on the alcohol and drug problems in both territories and the surrounding communities that are breeding addicts with little help of recovery and causing many deaths.

Seneca says the support mechanisms currently in place are just not up to the task, and he said he would work with surrounding communities and within the Seneca Nation to stop the dealers bringing in the drugs and establish what he calls a “recovery alumni group” to help people returning from treatment develop a bond with their peers who have been fighting the battle.

 Seneca says a unified law enforcement effort is needed from the territories and surrounding communities, and he says he discussed the problem with Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul during a recent meeting and she was very receptive.

Other items on his priority list include:

–ending corruption on the Seneca Nation

–health care

–fiscal stability and accountability

–election and government reform

–preserving Seneca culture and language

As for the gaming compact with the state, Seneca thinks the Seneca Nation and other tribes came out the losers in the settlement negotiated three years ago with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and that competition with state-run gaming operations continues to hurt Indian-run casinos in Niagara Falls and elsewhere, although people he talks to in the territories don’t necessarily  think it is time to renegotiate the compact as some lawmakers in Niagara Falls believe.

Seneca is the only announced candidate so far for the two-year term as president, although former President Snyder is said to be considering another run.

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