Senate Indian Affairs Committee approves Indian housing bills
The Senate Indian Affairs Committee approved two Indian housing bills at a business meeting on Wednesday.

H.R.3553, the Indian Veterans Housing Opportunity Act, ensures that Indian veterans who receive federal disability and survivor benefits are not denied support under the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act. The bill passed the House in April.

“Housing assistance for disabled Native American veterans is fatally flawed and means that the bigger the sacrifice the veteran has made for this country, the higher their rent and the more likely they are to be excluded from housing assistance altogether,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) said in a press release. “Penalizing Native American veterans for collecting disability payments is simply not right, and I am glad that the Committee voted today to correct this injustice.”

"Native American veterans have an extraordinary history of sacrifice and dedication to our country," said Sen. John Thune (R-South Dakota). "Many of our disabled veterans live on a fixed income, and I am pleased to see our bipartisan measure will help ensure that they are not denied access to vital housing assistance.”

S.3235, the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (HEARTH) Act, allow tribes to develop land leasing regulations. Once approved by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, tribes would not need to seek the agency's review for every single lease.

The National American Indian Housing Council praised both bills in a press release.

Committee Notices:
BUSINESS MEETING on pending committee issues (June 30, 2010)

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