(Anchorage, Alaska) – The Beringia Settlement Trust (BST), the settlement trust established by the Bering Straits Native Corporation (BSNC), has announced a record-high distribution of $11.00 per trust unit, an increase of $0.75 per trust unit more than the 2022 BST distribution. The BST distribution is funded primarily through contributions of the corporate earnings of BSNC. The BST beneficiaries are the shareholders of BSNC and have the same number of BST trust units as they have BSNC shares. The average BSNC shareholder who owns 100 shares of stock also has 100 BST trust units and will receive $1,100.
In addition to the regular beneficiary distribution, the BST Trustees have also declared a 2023 Elder Distribution of $1,500 for each beneficiary who is an original BSNC shareholder aged 65 years or older on October 2, 2023, the date of record.
The 2023 Elder Distributions will be mailed or direct deposited on or before October 13, 2023, and the regular beneficiary distributions will be mailed or direct deposited on or before November 17, 2023.
“BSNC remains guided by the mission established by the Board of Directors to improve the quality of life of Our People,” said BSNC Interim President & CEO Z. Daniel Graham. “This priority has led us to continued growth as we focus on the future and celebrate the record distribution to our shareholders and elders.”
All BST beneficiaries (all BSNC shareholders) are strongly encouraged to verify their mailing and/or direct deposit information via the MyBSNC Shareholder Portal by September 25, 2023 (for the Elder Distribution) and by October 23, 2023 (for the regular beneficiary distribution). Additionally, BST beneficiaries who have not signed up for direct deposit are encouraged to do so through the MyBSNC shareholder portal which can be found at https://shareholder.bsnc.net/home. The distributions by BST will be paid on a tax-free basis.
The total 2023 regular distribution will be approximately $7.0 million to BST beneficiaries of record. The total distribution by BST to BSNC elders will be approximately $1.8 million. Since 1972, BSNC and BST together have distributed $47.5 million in regular dividends/distributions and $10.5 million in Elder dividends/distributions.
There are many benefits that come with being a BSNC shareholder or descendant, including the eligibility to receive scholarships from the Beringia Settlement Trust and employment preference for qualified shareholders, descendants, and shareholder spouses. In addition to these benefits, through the BST, BSNC provides Shareholder Bereavement Assistance in the amount $2,500 to help defray the cost of funeral expenses for the death of an original BSNC shareholder, a lineal descendent of an original BSNC shareholder, or the spouse of a living original BSNC shareholder.