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Witness List: SCIA hearing on natural disasters in Indian Country

Leaders of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in North Carolina signed an agreement with the Federal Emergency Management Agency in March 2013. The tribe was the first to receive a disaster declaration directly from the federal government under H.R.152, which amended the Stafford Act to recognize tribal sovereignty. Photo from FEMA

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee holds a hearing tomorrow on natural disasters in Indian Country.

In 2013, Congress enacted a law that allows tribes to request disaster declarations directly from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Previously, only states could make such requests.

"Witnesses are expected to testify about what resources are available to tribes in these dire situations, how they can access those resources, and what tribal communities’ experiences have been in preparing for and recovering from natural disasters," the committee said in a press release.

The hearing takes place immediately following a business meeting at 2:30pm in Room 628 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building. The meeting won't be webcast but the hearing will.

The witness list follows:

Panel I
MS. ELIZABETH ZIMMERMAN, Deputy Associate Administrator for the Office of Response & Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, United States Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC

Panel II:
THE HONORABLE J. MICHAEL CHAVARRIA, Governor, Pueblo of Santa Clara of New Mexico, Espanola, NM

THE HONORABLE NORMA JOSEPH, Chairman, Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe, Darrington, WA

MR. MATT GREGORY, Executive Director of Risk Management, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Durant, OK
Accompanied by: MR. DARYL HOLADAY, Director of Safety Development, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Durant, OK

MS. MARY DAVID, Executive Vice President, Kawerak, Incorporated, Nome, AK

MR. JAKE HEFLIN, President and Chief Executive Officer, Tribal Emergency Management Association, Reno, NV

Committee Notice:
Oversight Hearing on "When Catastrophe Strikes: Responses to Natural Disasters in Indian Country" (July 30, 2014)

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