your internet resource on facebook on twitter on Google+ on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Health Coverage for American Indians and Alaska Natives
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Senate backs bill with $2B for Indian Country
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Filed Under: Politics

The Senate overwhelmingly approved a global health bill on Wednesday that includes $2 billion for Indian Country.

The money is part of a $50 billion package that targets HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other diseases worldwide. Key Senators were able to gain unanimous support for diverting a small chunk towards Indian law enforcement, health and water programs.

"While the primary focus of this legislation is focused on disease prevention overseas, I am pleased that we were able to direct attention to the most pressing needs of Native Americans here in the United States," said Sen. John Thune (R-South Dakota), who led the fight for the money as part of S.2731.

The bill only authorizes the funds so appropriators will have to ensure the money finds its way to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Indian Health Service and the Department of Justice. But news of the $2 billion was welcomed.

"It will go a long way to address some of the issues that need to be addressed," Robert Moore, a council member for the Rosebud Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, said at a Senate hearing this morning.

Jackie Johnson, the executive director of the National Congress of American Indians, also praised passage of the bill. The money will be "very helpful to law enforcement," she said at the hearing, which focused on tribal justice issues.

The House passed its version of the bill in April without the $2 billion. Thune, however, said he has reached an agreement with Democrats and Republicans to ensure the package that gets sent to President Bush includes the much-needed funds.

"I believe that the first step to creating jobs and economic opportunity on our reservations is improved public safety," he said. "This bill is a major step toward achieving that goal."

Of the $1 billion for public safety and health, $750 million will go towards law enforcement. The breakdown follows:
  • $370 million for detention facility construction, rehabilitation, and placement through the Department of Justice;
  • $310 million for the Bureau of Indian Affairs' Public Safety and Justice Account, which funds tribal police and tribal courts;
  • $30 million for investigations and prosecution of crimes in Indian Country by the FBI and U.S. Attorneys;
  • $30 million for the Department of Justice's Office of Justice Program for Indian and Alaska Native Programs; and,
  • $10 million for cross-deputization or other cooperative agreements between state, local, and tribal governments.
  • The $250 million for health is directed to the IHS. The agency will determine how to split the money between contract health service, construction and rehabilitation of facilities and construction of sanitation facilities.

    The other $1 billion will be used for a variety of water projects on reservations that have already been approved by Congress.

    The bill states that the money will be available immediately, for fiscal year 2009. It will have to be spent over a five year period.

    "While I believe we have a significant moral responsibility to address global AIDS and will do so in the underlying bill, it is also the case that we do not have to go off our shore to find Third World conditions," said Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-North Dakota), the chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, said on the Senate floor yesterday. "You can go to some Indian reservations in this country and find Third World conditions in this country, dealing with health care, with crime, with education, and a whole range of issues."

    Related Stories:
    Senate weighs $2B in funding for Indian Country (7/15)
    BIA spends $1M on Standing Rock Sioux 'surge' (7/14)
    Column: Sen. Thune takes on law enforcement issues (7/10)
    Ex-BIA official cites need for law enforcement (6/24)
    Federal prosecutor defends efforts at DOJ (6/20)
    Senate panel tackles crime issues in Indian Country (6/20)
    Editorial: Funding alone won't help Standing Rock (6/16)
    Indian Affairs Committee takes up law bill (6/16)
    Editorial: Standing Rock Sioux confront crime (6/13)
    Editorial: Standing Rock crime deserves attention (6/10)
    Sen. Dorgan plans subpoena over BIA jail report (6/5)
    BIA tackles crime on Standing Rock Reservation (6/5)
    Sen. Dorgan plans bill to address Indian Country crime (11/20)

    Copyright © Indianz.Com
    More headlines...
    Stay Connected:
    On Facebook

    On Twitter

    On Google+

    On SoundCloud
    Local Links:
    Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
    Latest News:
    Native Sun News: Family questions FBI on reservation death (11/25)
    Lakota Country Times: Rosebud students earn top scholarship (11/25)
    Brandon Ecoffey: Making a difference for people on Pine Ridge (11/25)
    Yurok Tribe: Mourning the passing of 'visionary' Troy Fletcher (11/25)
    Ned Blackhawk: Supreme Court case jeopardizes tribal rights (11/25)
    Steve Russell: The real origins of the world's terrorism crisis (11/25)
    Ramona Peters: Sharing a Wampanoag story of Thanksgiving (11/25)
    Yatibaey Evans: Let's all teach the truth about Native history (11/25)
    Martie Simmons: Every Native parent dreads this time of year (11/25)
    Eric Metaxas: The 'miracle' of Squanto and first Thanksgiving (11/25)
    Presidential Medal of Freedom presented to late Billy Frank Jr (11/25)
    Oneida Nation opens first branch location of tribal-owned bank (11/25)
    Virginia tribes continue to pay tribute required by 1677 treaty (11/25)
    Chukchansi Tribe reaches new agreement for shuttered casino (11/25)
    Poarch Band to welcome visitors to $65M expansion at casino (11/25)
    Stillaguamish Tribe debuts eatery and microbrewery at casino (11/25)
    Connecticut tribes consider proposals for third gaming facilty (11/25)
    Mark Pilarski: Why are games different at some tribal casinos? (11/25)
    Tribes seek support for Native language instruction programs (11/24)
    Rep. Mullin confirms divisions in Indian Country on Carcieri fix (11/24)
    President Obama to award Medal of Freedom to Billy Frank Jr. (11/24)
    Sault Tribe pushes for passage of Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act (11/24)
    Lakota Country Times: Charles Trimble recognized for writings (11/24)
    Native Sun News Editorial: Some new names in Indian Country (11/24)
    Jim Kent: South Dakota lands in the news again for corruption (11/24)
    John Yellowbird Steele: Bill tries to hijack recognition process (11/24)
    Albert Bender: 'The Green Inferno' hits new low in racist films (11/24)
    Peter d'Errico: Anti-Indian wars continue in US Supreme Court (11/24)
    Anne Keala Kelly: US government wants to steal Hawaii again (11/24)
    Counties ask Supreme Court to hear Ute Tribe boundary case (11/24)
    Shinnecock Nation considers entering medical marijuana field (11/24)
    USDA policy eases return of traditional food to tribal facilities (11/24)
    Sitka Tribe asks FBI to consider racial bias in student's arrest (11/24)
    Court sides with Indian inmates over closure of sweat lodge (11/24)
    Former employee accused of cheating Grand Traverse Band (11/24)
    Tribes with special acts of Congress face hurdles for gaming (11/24)
    Enterprise Rancheria addresses concerns about gaming site (11/24)
    Mohegan Tribe signs partner for $5B casino proposal in Korea (11/24)
    Bart Hinkle: States trying to protect their gaming monopolies (11/24)
    Blackfeet Nation wins ruling against development at sacred site (11/23)
    Center for Native American Youth hires new executive director (11/23)
    Quinault Nation slams approval of genetically modified salmon (11/23)
    Native Sun News: Great Plains people key in defeating Keystone (11/23)
    more headlines...

    Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

    Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
    About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

    Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.