Interior Secretary Salazar delivers remarks at NCAI conference
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar spoke to tribal leaders at the 67th annual conference of the National Congress of American Indians this morning.

Salazar dedicated a considerable portion of his remarks to the Indian trust fund lawsuit. Congress has yet to approve a $3.4 billion settlement to the case.

"I believe that last December’s settlement regarding the U.S. trust obligations is both fair and forward-looking," Salazar said. "Most importantly, it will enable us to turn the page, help to right a historic wrong, and advance the on-going cause of trust reform."

Salazar also spoke about the importance of the Tribal Law and Order Act. As part of an effort to improvement enforcement, he said he has established a senior-level working group at the Interior Department.

Finally, Salazar announced the Obama administration's support for a water settlement with the White Mountain Apache Tribe of Arizona. So far, the government has backed three tribal water agreements in Montana and in New Mexico.

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Press Release: Salazar Outlines Progress of Empowerment Agenda in Speech to National Congress of American Indians (DOI 11/15)