Griles McCaleb to speak at NCAI
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National Congress of American Indian officials today said Deputy Interior Secretary J. Steven Griles and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Neal McCaleb will address the organization's annual convention at the end of the month.

Griles, who has told a federal judge he is in charge of trust reform, and McCaleb are slated to speak Tuesday, November 27, in Spokane, Washington. It will be their first appearance before the nation's oldest and largest tribal organization.

The focus of their visit will be the Bush administration's proposal to strip the Bureau of Indian Affairs of its trust duties and hand them to another agency. NCAI officials have been rearranging their convention to address the recent development and have already criticized the administration for having "repudiated" the federal policy of government-to-government consultation.

Changes to the convention agenda will be made public when they are finalized, said NCAI.

In what was considered a precedent for any Interior Secretary, Gale Norton chose to make her first public speaking appearance at NCAI's February winter session. At the time, she told tribal leaders trust reform was one of her top priorities.

"As the trustee, I clearly recognize the important obligations of the Department to put in place those systems, procedures, and people to fulfill our obligation to the trust beneficiaries, both individual Indians and tribes," she said.

Today on Indianz.Com:
Norton stripping BIA of trust duties (11/16)
Tribal leaders in uproar over proposal (11/16)
Top Democrat calls for hearings (11/16)
Q&A on BIA Reorganization (11/16)

Relevant Links:
National Congress of American Indians -
Office of the Special Trustee -
Trust Management Improvement Project -
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton -

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BIA plan called 'desperate' (11/16)
Developing: BIA stripped of trust duties (11/15)
Interior might need year on new agency (11/15)
Gover: Indian Country now 'weaker' (11/15)
Trust fund security document filed (11/14)
Interior mum on trust fund report (11/13)
Norton hires own defense lawyer (11/9)
Norton told to appoint trust fund receiver (11/7)
Griles taking lead on trust reform (11/5)
Norton's defense off to a 'bad start' (11/2)
Judge ready to hold Norton in contempt (10/31)
Interior promises trust fund defense (10/31)
Judge: Norton's actions 'contemptuous' (10/30)
Trust fund defense team scrapped (10/30)
Action on Norton urged 'on all fronts' (10/29)
Norton views broken trust fund system (10/29)