indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439   fax: 202 318 2182
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Senate committee backs boost for Indian programs
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Filed Under: Politics

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee is backing big increases for Indian Country programs, including a $400 million appropriation that was rejected on the Senate floor earlier this month.

Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-North Dakota), the chairman of the committee, and Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyoming), the vice chairman, want colleagues to boost Indian programs by more than $1 billion for the coming year. They are seeking an additional $600 million for Indian health, another $100 million for public safety and justice and at least $90 million more for economic development programs.

"The United States owes a unique legal obligation and trust responsibility to 562 federally recognized Indian tribes based on treaties, federal laws, and Supreme Court decisions," a March 13 letter to the Senate Budget Committee states. "We recommend that the FY 2010 Budget Resolution include funding levels that will permit the federal government to meet these solemn obligations."

Dorgan and Barrasso also want Congress to appropriate $400 million for the Emergency Fund for Indian Safety and Health. That's the amount that Sen. John Thune (R-South Dakota), who is not a member of the committee but is a strong tribal advocate, sought for the program through an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act

The Senate rejected the request along party lines, with Democrats -- including Dorgan and other members of the committee -- voting against the amendment. That led to an Indian Country Today story in which Thune accused the majority party of playing "politics" with the bill, which President Barack Obama signed into law last week.

According to Democrats, the fiscal year 2009 bill provides record amounts for Indian programs. It includes nearly $6 billion for the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Indian Health Service, an increase of 5.7 percent.

Combined with increases in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the BIA and the IHS will receive nearly $7 billion, a 23 percent increase, for the current year.

Obama has promised increases for both agencies but so far has only released an outline of his fiscal year 2010 budget proposal. In their letter, Dorgan and Barrasso say even more money is needed to address poor health, safety and economic conditions in Indian Country.

"The Indian Affairs Committee's oversight of conditions and issues facing tribal communities has revealed significant challenges," Dorgan and Barrasso wrote. "Many tribes face inadequate access to health care, law enforcement services, economic opportunity, education, and housing, all key elements of healthy communities. Tribal infrastructure needs are significant and too often present both a threat to public health and safety and a barrier to tribal economic development."

Relevant Documents:
Senate Indian Affairs Committee Views and Estimates (March 13, 2009)

FY 2010 Budget:
President's Message | Interior Factsheet | Interior Overview | HHS Factsheet | HHS Overview | More Documents

FY 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act:
H.R.1105 | Text and Explanatory Statement | More Details

Related Stories:
Enzi's Indian earmarks in $410B appropriations (3/13)
President Obama signs $410B appropriations into law (3/12)
Indian Country earmarks abound in massive budget bill (3/11)
John Thune: Senate turns back on Indian Country (3/11)
Senate approves $410B appropriations bill (3/11)
Big $410B federal budget bill in limbo in Senate (3/6)
Thune seeks more money for tribal law and health (3/4)
Omnibus bill includes reservation projects (2/24)



Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Tribes united against Keystone XL Pipeline (9/19)
Regina Brave: The earth that once was will soon be no more (9/19)
Chelsey Luger and Gyasi Ross: A conversation about suicide (9/19)
Cobell settlement checks being cashed across Indian Country (9/19)
Congress passes measure for tribal general welfare programs (9/19)
Native Sun News: US Senate candidates debate Native issues (9/18)
Cobell settlement checks landing in Indian Country mailboxes (9/18)
Sen. Walsh welcomes arrival of last Cobell settlement payout (9/18)
Rep. Daines praises House action on tribal general welfare bill (9/18)
Winnebago attorney joins BIA as a deputy assistant secretary (9/18)
NWIFC schedules briefing on 'Treaty Rights 101' on Capitol Hill (9/18)
Norbert Hill: It's past time to drop the Washington NFL mascot (9/18)
Peter d'Errico: Connecting mascots to racism and termination (9/18)
Opinion: Eliminating NFL team's racist mascot is just the start (9/18)
Student newspaper punished over refusal to print the R-word (9/18)
Officer investigated for 'drunk uneducated animals' comment (9/18)
9th Circuit rules against Chemehuevi Tribe in land deed case (9/18)
Mashable: Oglala Sioux man still pushing MazaCoin currency (9/18)
City won't allow vote on Tohono O'odham Nation casino plan (9/18)
9th Circuit poses tough questions in Big Lagoon casino case (9/18)
North Fork Rancheria banks on voter approval of casino deal (9/18)
KBIC judge dismisses lawsuit challenging plan for new casino (9/18)
Oneida Nation concerned about location of commercial casino (9/18)
Mashantucket Tribe's gaming executive to resign next month (9/18)
Column: Time for Mohegan Tribe to show its hand over casino (9/18)
Native Sun News: Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe honors veterans (9/17)
Mark Trahant: Is independence in the future for tribal nations? (9/17)
Audio: SCIA takes up bill to bar Tohono O'odham Nation casino (9/17)
House approves bill to address tribal general welfare programs (9/17)
House Natural Resources Committee sets markup on tribal bills (9/17)
House subcommittee to hold hearing on bill for Hualapai Tribe (9/17)
9th Circuit takes up Big Lagoon Rancheria gaming land dispute (9/17)
House passes bill to shield Gun Lake Tribe casino from litigation (9/17)
Andre Cramblit: Enjoying life at Dartmouth as a Native student (9/17)
Dina Gilio-Whitaker: Tribes need to lead climate change reform (9/17)
Sarah Deer wins genius grant for work to protect Native women (9/17)
Tex Hall loses bid for another term as chair of North Dakota tribe (9/17)
Group starts dragging of river in search of missing Native women (9/17)
Appeal filed over Navajo language ability of presidential hopeful (9/17)
Trial delayed for leader of Muscogee Nation accused in theft case (9/17)
Editorial: Pass bill to extend federal recognition to Virginia tribes (9/17)
NLRB reaffirms jurisdiction over Little River Band gaming facility (9/17)
Chumash Tribe to use labor unions for all work on casino project (9/17)
Student arrested over theft at Saginaw Chippewa Tribe's casino (9/17)
Native Sun News: Homeless students find support in Rapid City (9/16)
Checks from final payment of Cobell settlement put in the mail (9/16)
DOI offers $9.4M for Cobell buy-backs on Umatilla Reservation (9/16)
House takes up bill to address tribal general welfare programs (9/16)
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.