Federal Register


Posted: March 25, 2019
More: class iii, connecticut, gaming, mashantucket

The notice announces Amendments to the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe Gaming Procedures.


Under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), Public Law 100-497, 25 U.S.C. 2701 et seq., upon the occurrence of certain circumstances the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) shall issue procedures providing for the operation of Class III gaming by an Indian Tribe. On May 31, 1991, the Secretary published a Notice of Final Mashantucket Gaming Procedures (Procedures) in the Federal Register. See 56 FR 24996. On August 2, 2017, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe (Tribe) submitted proposed amendments to the Tribe's Procedures (Procedures Amendments), along with resolutions of the Connecticut General Assembly, signed by the Governor, indicating the State of Connecticut's (State) support and approval of the Procedures Amendments, as well as proposed amendments to the Tribal-State Memorandum of Understanding (MOU Amendments). The Department did not approve or disapprove the proposed Procedures Amendments or MOU Amendments at that time.


After further consultations with the Tribe, the Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs publishes this notice that on March 15, 2019, she approved the proposed amendments to the Tribe's Procedures. Additionally, on March 19, 2019, the Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs approved the Tribal-State MOU dated January 13, 1993, as amended on April 30, 1993, and April 25, 1994, as well as the MOU Amendments submitted on August 2, 2017.



Posted: March 18, 2019
More: gaming, igra, land-into-trust, little river, michigan, off-reservation, two-part determination

The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is reopening the public comment period for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Little River Band Trust Acquisition and Casino Project, Township of Fruitport, Muskegon County, Michigan (DEIS).


BIA will consider all comments submitted or postmarked by April 17, 2019. Comments submitted to BIA concerning the DEIS prior to this announcement do not need to be resubmitted.

Mr. Scott Doig, Regional Environmental Scientist, Division of Environmental, Facilities, Safety and Cultural Resource Management (DEFSCRM), Bureau of Indian Affairs, Midwest Region, Norman Pointe II Building, 5600 West American Boulevard, Suite 500, Bloomington, MN 55347; phone: (612) 725-4597; email: scott.doig@bia.gov. Information is also available online at littleriverEIS.com.


BIA published a notice of availability of the DEIS on November 21, 2018. See 83 FR 58783. Public review of the DEIS is part of the administrative process for the evaluation of the Tribe's application to the BIA for the Federal trust acquisition of approximately 60 acres in the Township of Fruitport, Muskegon County, Michigan, upon which the Tribe proposes to develop a casino, hotel, parking, and other supporting facilities. The BIA held a public meeting on the DEIS on December 12, 2018 at Fruitport Middle School, 3113 E Pontaluna Road, Fruitport, Michigan 49415.


Background: The Proposed Project consists of the following components: (1) The transfer of an approximately 60-acre property from fee to trust status; (2) issuance of a Secretarial Determination by the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) under Section 20 of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) that gaming on the project site would be in the best interest of the Tribe and not detrimental to the surrounding community (25 U.S.C. 2719(b)(1)(A)); and (3) development of the trust parcel and adjacent land owned by the Tribe, totaling approximately 86.5 acres, with a variety of uses including a casino, hotel, conference center, parking, and other supporting facilities. At full build-out, the proposed casino facility would include approximately 149,069 square feet of gaming floor; a hotel with 220 guest rooms; a 250-seat buffet, as well as a café, sports bar, food court, and other food and beverage providers; and an approximately 38,790-square foot convention center. Access to the project site would be provided via two driveways: One along Harvey Street and one along East Ellis Road. Five service driveways, not for public use, would be located on East Ellis Road.


The following alternatives are considered in the DEIS: (1) Proposed Project; (2) Reduced Intensity Alternative; (3) Non-Gaming Alternative; (4) Custer Site Alternative, and (5) No Action/No Development. Environmental issues addressed in the DEIS include geology and soils, water resources, air quality, biological resources, cultural and paleontological resources, socioeconomic conditions (including environmental justice), transportation and circulation, land use, public services, noise, hazardous materials, aesthetics, cumulative effects, and indirect and growth-inducing effects.



Posted: March 12, 2019
More: ihcia, loans

Key Dates: March 15, 2019, first award cycle deadline date; August 15, 2019, last award cycle deadline date; September 15, 2019, last award cycle deadline date for supplemental loan repayment program funds; September 30, 2019, entry on duty deadline date.


I. Funding Opportunity Description


The Indian Health Service (IHS) estimated budget for fiscal year (FY) 2019 includes $27,500,000 for the IHS Loan Repayment Program (LRP) for health professional educational loans (undergraduate and graduate) in return for full-time clinical service as defined in the IHS LRP policy at ihs.gov/​loanrepayment/​policiesandprocedures in Indian health programs.


This notice is being published early to coincide with the recruitment activity of the IHS which competes with other Government and private health management organizations to employ qualified health professionals.


This program is authorized by the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (IHCIA) Section 108, codified at 25 U.S.C. 1616a.


II. Award Information


The estimated amount available is approximately $17,750,000 to support approximately 384 competing awards averaging $46,205 per award for a two-year contract. The estimated amount available is approximately $9,750,000 to support approximately 392 competing awards averaging $24,840 per award for a one-year extension. One-year contract extensions will receive priority consideration in any award cycle. Applicants selected for participation in the FY 2019 program cycle will be expected to begin their service period no later than September 30, 2019.



Posted: March 8, 2019
More: scholarships

The Indian Health Service (IHS) is committed to encouraging American Indians and Alaska Natives to enter the health professions and to assuring the availability of Indian health professionals to serve Indians. The IHS is committed to the recruitment of students for the following programs:


The Indian Health Professions Preparatory Scholarship (Preparatory Scholarship) authorized by Section 103 of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act, Public Law 94-437 (1976), as amended (IHCIA), codified at 25 U.S.C. 1613(b)(1).


The Indian Health Professions Pre-graduate Scholarship (Pre-graduate Scholarship) authorized by Section 103 of the IHCIA, codified at 25 U.S.C. 1613(b)(2).


The Indian Health Professions Scholarship (Health Professions Scholarship) authorized by Section 104 of the IHCIA, codified at 25 U.S.C. 1613a.


Full-time and part-time scholarships will be funded for each of the three scholarship programs. The scholarship award selections and funding are subject to availability of funds.



Posted: March 5, 2019
More: farm bill, hemp, meetings

In preparing to implement the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (commonly referred to as the 2018 Farm Bill), the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will host a listening session for initial public input about a new program to regulate hemp production. The listening session will provide interested parties with an opportunity to assist the Agency's future rulemaking efforts by sharing their views on how the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) can partner with agriculture agencies representing states, territories, and Indian tribes to implement a nationwide program for overseeing the production of industrial hemp.


Listening session: The listening session will be on March 13, 2019, and will begin at 12:00 p.m. and conclude by 3:00 p.m.


Registration: You must register by March 11, 2019, to speak during the listening session and to provide oral comments during the listening session. Register in advance for this webinar: zoom.us/​webinar/​register/​WN_​L2G9K7cXTkayQ2O1_​0AP0g. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.


Comments: For those presenting comments at the online listening session, a written copy of your comments is due by March 11, 2019. You may use farmbill.hemp@usda.gov to submit your written comments via email. AMS will make the agenda for the session available on the website by March 11, 2019.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: kentucky, nagpra

The Filson Historical Society has completed an inventory of human remains, in consultation with the appropriate Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, and has determined that there is a cultural affiliation between the human remains and present-day Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian Tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request to the Filson Historical Society. If no additional requestors come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the lineal descendants, Indian Tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: museums, washington

The Thomas Burke Memorial Washington State Museum (Burke Museum) has completed an inventory of human remains, in consultation with the appropriate Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, and has determined that there is a cultural affiliation between the human remains and present-day Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian Tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request to the Burke Museum. If no additional requestors come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the lineal descendants, Indian Tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: michigan, nagpra

The University of Michigan has completed an inventory of human remains and associated funerary object, in consultation with the appropriate Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, and has determined that there is no cultural affiliation between the human remains and any present-day Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations. Representatives of any Indian Tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of these human remains and associated funerary object should submit a written request to the University of Michigan. If no additional requesters come forward, transfer of control of the human remains and associated funerary object to the Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: museums, nagpra, washington

The Thomas Burke Memorial Washington State Museum (Burke Museum), in consultation with the appropriate Indian Tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, has determined that the cultural items listed in this notice meet the definition of unassociated funerary objects. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian Tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request to the Burke Museum. If no additional claimants come forward, transfer of control of the cultural items to the lineal descendants, Indian Tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: economic development, information collection, loans

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) are proposing a new information collection.


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:


In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we provide the general public and other Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on new, proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps us assess the impact of our information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. It also helps the public understand our information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format.


We are soliciting comments on the proposed ICR that is described below. We are especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is the collection necessary to the proper functions of the BIA; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the BIA enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the BIA minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology.


Comments that you submit in response to this notice are a matter of public record. We will include or summarize each comment in our request to OMB to approve this ICR. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.


Abstract: This information collection is authorized under 25 U.S.C. 5135; 70 Stat. 62 and 25 CFR152.34 that provides individual Indians owning an individual tract of trust land the ability to mortgage their land for the purpose of home acquisition and construction, home improvements, and economic development. The BIA is required to review the trust mortgage application for conformity to statutes, policies, and regulations. Mortgage documents submitted to BIA from the lending institutions will assist BIA staff in their analysis to approve or disapprove a trust land mortgage application request.



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: fines, igra

In compliance with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (the Act) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance, the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC or Commission) is amending its civil monetary penalty rule to reflect an annual adjustment for inflation in order to improve the penalty's effectiveness and maintain its deterrent effect. The Act provides that the new penalty level must apply to penalties assessed after the effective date of the increase, including when the penalties whose associated violation predate the increase.


I. Background


On November 2, 2015, the President signed into law the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (Sec. 701 of Pub. L. 114-74). Beginning in 2017, the Act requires agencies to make annual inflationary adjustments to their civil monetary penalties by January 15th of each year, in accordance with annual OMB guidance.


II. Calculation of Annual Adjustment


In December of every year, OMB issues guidance to agencies to calculate the annual adjustment. According to OMB, the cost-of-living adjustment multiplier for 2019 is 1.02522, based on the Consumer Price Index for the month of October 2018.


Pursuant to this guidance, the Commission has calculated the annual adjustment level of the civil monetary penalty contained in 25 CFR 575.4 (“The Chairman may assess a civil fine, not to exceed $51,302 per violation, against a tribe, management contractor, or individual operating Indian gaming for each notice of violation . . .”). The 2019 adjusted level of the civil monetary penalty is $52,596 ($51,302 × 1.02522).



Posted: March 1, 2019
More: fines, nagpra

This rule revises U.S. Department of the Interior regulations implementing the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act to provide for annual adjustments of civil penalties to account for inflation under the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 and Office of Management and Budget guidance. The purpose of these adjustments is to maintain the deterrent effect of civil penalties and to further the policy goals of the underlying statutes.


I. Background


On November 2, 2015, the President signed into law the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (Sec. 701 of Pub. L. 114-74) (“the Act”). The Act requires Federal agencies to adjust the level of civil monetary penalties annually for inflation no later than January 15 of each year.


II. Calculation of Annual Adjustments


The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) recently issued guidance to assist Federal agencies in implementing the annual adjustments required by the Act which agencies must complete by January 15, 2019. See December 14, 2018, Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, from Mick Mulvaney, Director, Office of Management and Budget, re: Implementation of Penalty Inflation Adjustments for 2019, Pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (M-19-04). The guidance states that the cost-of-living adjustment multiplier for 2019, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI-U) for the month of October 2018, not seasonally adjusted, is 1.02522. (The annual inflation adjustments are based on the percent change between the October CPI-U preceding the date of the adjustment, and the prior year's October CPI-U.) The guidance instructs agencies to complete the 2019 annual adjustment by multiplying each applicable penalty by the multiplier, 1.025221, and rounding to the nearest dollar.


The annual adjustment applies to all civil monetary penalties with a dollar amount that are subject to the Act. A civil monetary penalty is any assessment with a dollar amount that is levied for a violation of a Federal civil statute or regulation, and is assessed or enforceable through a civil action in Federal court or an administrative proceeding. A civil monetary penalty does not include a penalty levied for violation of a criminal statute, or fees for services, licenses, permits, or other regulatory review. This final rule adjusts the following civil monetary penalties contained in the Department regulations implementing the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) for 2019 by multiplying 1.025221 by each penalty amount as updated by the adjustment made in 2018:


CFR citationDescription of the penaltyCurrent penalty
including
catch-up
adjustment
Annual adjustment
(multiplier)
Adjusted penalty
43 CFR 10.12(g)(2)Failure of Museum to Comply$6,6661.025221$6,834
43 CFR 10.12(g)(3)Continued Failure to Comply Per Day1,3341.0252211,368


Consistent with the Act, the adjusted penalty levels for 2019 will take effect immediately upon the effective date of the adjustment. The adjusted penalty levels for 2019 will apply to penalties assessed after that date including, if consistent with agency policy, assessments associated with violations that occurred on or after November 2, 2015. The Act does not, however, change previously assessed penalties that the Department is collecting or has collected. Nor does the Act change an agency's existing statutory authorities to adjust penalties.



Posted: February 28, 2019
More: ihcia, strategic plan

In follow-up to the Indian Health Service (IHS) request for comments on the Draft IHS Strategic Plan Fiscal Year (FY) 2018-2022 issued in the Federal Register (FR) on July 24, 2018, (see 83 FR 35012; July 24, 2018; hereafter “July 2018 FR document”), the IHS is announcing the final plan entitled: IHS Strategic Plan FY 2019-2023. The IHS is also making available on the IHS Strategic Plan website, a response to comments document that addresses comments received on the Draft IHS Strategic Plan from the July 2018 FR document.


RADM Francis Frazier, Director, Office of Public Health Support, IHS, 5600 Fishers Lane, Mail Stop: 09E10D, Rockville, Maryland 20857. Telephone number: 301-443-0222 (This is not a toll-free number), email address: IHSStrategicPlan@ihs.gov. In addition, progress on the IHS Strategic Plan will be periodically updated on the IHS website at: ihs.gov/​strategicplan/​.

General Information


The IHS, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is responsible for providing federal health services to American Indians and Alaska Natives. The provision of health services to members of federally-recognized Tribes grew out of the special government-to-government relationship between the federal government and Indian Tribes. Established in 1787, this relationship is based on Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution and has been given form and substance by numerous treaties, laws, Supreme Court decisions, and Executive Orders. The IHS is the principal federal health care provider and health care advocate for Indian people. The IHS provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for American Indians and Alaska Natives.


The IHS Strategic Plan, covering FY 2019-2023, includes a mission statement, a vision statement, and details on how the IHS will achieve its mission through three strategic goals: (1) To ensure that comprehensive, culturally appropriate personal and public health services are available and accessible to American Indian and Alaska Native people; (2) To promote excellence and quality through innovation of the Indian health system into an optimally performing organization; and (3) To strengthen IHS program management and operations. These strategic goals are supported by objectives that reflect the outcomes the IHS is working to achieve and strategies describe how the IHS plans to make progress toward the objectives.


Background


The IHS Strategic Plan reflects the feedback received from Tribes, Tribal organizations, urban Indian organizations, staff, and other stakeholders. The IHS used a process Start Printed Page 6797similar to the HHS Strategic Plan FY 2018-2022 and gathered feedback from key partners including staff, Tribes, and urban Indian organizations. Informed by a variety of source documents, the IHS first developed a draft initial framework and initiated Tribal consultation and urban Indian confer on the draft initial framework from September 15, 2017, through October 31, 2017. During the initial framework comment period, the IHS held listening sessions, presented at Tribal meetings, and held conference calls with Tribal and urban Indian organization leaders. Comments were also accepted after October 31, 2017, on an ongoing basis.


An IHS Federal-Tribal Strategic Planning Workgroup (workgroup) reviewed the draft initial framework comments received from 150 Tribes, Tribal organizations, urban Indian organizations, and IHS staff. The workgroup suggested strategies during six meetings from November 2017 through February 2018 and made recommendations for the Draft IHS Strategic Plan FY 2018-2022, published in the FR on July 24, 2018. Workgroup membership included Tribal leaders or their designees, a representative from the IHS Office of Urban Indian Health Programs, and IHS staff from areas, service unit, and headquarters.


On July 24, 2018, the Draft IHS Strategic Plan was published in the FR for a 30-day public review and comment period. The IHS provided formal letters regarding the Draft IHS Strategic Plan release to Tribal and urban Indian organization leaders and notification of two virtual town hall sessions, one for urban confer and one for Tribal consultation on August 3 and August 6, 2018, respectively. The IHS received 123 comments, including questions, comments, and recommendations on the specific elements of the plan and other comments related to the terminology used in the IHS Strategic Plan, implementation of strategies, measures, and the IHS strategic planning process. The IHS reviewed all comments and carefully considered changes before publishing the IHS Strategic Plan FY 2019-2023.


The IHS Strategic Plan FY 2019-2023 includes minor language updates to the Vision, Goal 1, Objectives 2.2 and 3.1, and several strategies to clarify intent and adds urban Indian organizations, where appropriate. The IHS Strategic Plan timeframe is updated from FY 2018-2022 to FY 2019-2023 since the plan is being released during FY 2019. Significant changes to the IHS Strategic Plan include the following additional sections: an introduction, strategic plan development, performance, and appendices. These additional sections are in response to the comments received. Several commenters recommended addressing the unique government-to-government relationship with Tribal governments and the provision of health services based on this relationship, clarification about non-IHS participation in the development of the IHS Strategic Plan, recommendations to include measures and track progress, and to include more information about the alignment with the HHS Strategic Plan FY 2018-2022.



Posted: February 13, 2019
More: information collection, self-governance

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) are proposing to renew an information collection.


In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we provide the general public and other Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on new, proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps us assess the impact of our information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. It also helps the public understand our information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format.


We are soliciting comments on the proposed ICR that is described below. We are especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is the collection necessary to the proper functions of the BIA; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the BIA enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the BIA minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology.


Comments that you submit in response to this notice are a matter of public record. We will include or summarize each comment in our request to OMB to approve this ICR. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.


Abstract: The Self-Governance program is authorized by the Tribal Self-Governance Act of 1994, Public Law 103-413 (the Act), as amended. Indian Tribes interested in entering into Self-Governance must submit certain information as required by the Act. In addition, those Tribes and Tribal consortia that have entered into Self-Governance funding agreements will be requested to submit certain information as described in 25 CFR 1000. This information will be used to justify a budget request submission on their behalf and to comport with section 405 of the Act that calls for the Secretary to submit an annual report to the Congress.



Posted: February 13, 2019
More: gaming, igra, land-into-trust, northern arapaho, section 20, wyoming

The Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs made a final agency determination to acquire 6.3 acres, more or less, of land within the boundaries of the Wind River Reservation in trust for the Arapaho Tribe of the Wind River Reservation, Wyoming, for gaming and other purposes on December 21, 2018.


This notice is published in the exercise of authority delegated by the Secretary of the Interior to the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs by 209 Departmental Manual 8.1, and is published to comply with the requirements of 25 CFR 151.12(c)(2)(ii) that notice of the decision to acquire land in trust be promptly provided in the Federal Register.


On December 21, 2018, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs issued a decision to accept 6.3 acres, more or less, of land in trust for the Arapaho Tribe of the Wind River Reservation, Wyoming, (Tribe) under the authority of the Act of July 27, 1939, 53 Stat. 1128-1130, as amended by Public Law 103-435, 15, 108 Stat. 4573 (Nov. 2, 1994) (formerly codified at 25 U.S.C. 571-581). The Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs determined that the Tribe's request also meets the requirements of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act's “within reservation boundaries exception,” 25 U.S.C. 2719(a)(1), to the general prohibition contained in 25 U.S.C. 2719(a) on gaming on lands acquired in trust after October 17, 1988.


The Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs, on behalf of the Secretary of the Interior, will immediately acquire title to the 6.3 acres, more or less, in the name of the United States of America in trust for the Tribe upon fulfillment of Departmental requirements.


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