Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Department of the Treasury
Posted: June 5, 2020

The Department of the Treasury on June 4, 2020, posted a document titled “Coronavirus Relief Fund: Frequently Asked Questions on Tribal Population.”

The two-page document attempts to explain why Treasury chose to base the first round of payments from the $8 billion coronavirus relief fund on Indian housing data. However, it does not provide the actual allocation formula for determining such payments.

The document offers responses to the following questions:

  1. Why did Treasury allocate funding based on Tribal population using the Decennial Census total American Indian Alaskan Native (AIAN) data used by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in its Indian Housing Block Grant Program (IHBG)?
  2. What population data did Treasury use for Indian Tribes not included in the IHBG population data?
  3. Why did Treasury not use the tribal enrollment data as a proxy for population data?
  4. Our tribe’s enrollment data is substantially larger than the Decennial Census AIAN population data. Can you explain the difference?
  5. Why did Treasury not use the population estimates from the American Community Survey (ACS) data?

Previously, the department posted “Coronavirus Relief Fund: Allocations to Tribal Governments.” The May 5 document provided details on how the first $4.8 billion would be distributed but it did not contain any allocation formulas either.

The first payments from coronavirus relief fund went out last month to tribal governments. A portion is being withheld from Alaska Native for-profit corporations pending the resolution of litigation.

The remaining $3.2 billion has yet to be distributed.

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