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News by Year

Press Release

Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Forrest J. Gerard said today the Bureau of Indian Affairs plans to have draft regulations for the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1979 ready for comment by January 31, 1979.

The Act, which was passed during the last session of Congress, 1requires that regulations be published within 180 days.

He said when the draft regulations are completed they will be made available to both on and off-reservation Indian people as well as the general public for comment and consultation.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs, in its fiscal year 1980 budget request, has asked Congress for Federal funding of $948,120,000 -- approximately $86.5 million less than the 1979 funding.

Most of the decrease, reflecting the President's anti-inflation concern will be in the new construction of buildings, utilities and roads. For the operation of Indian programs, the Bureau has asked for $792,020,000 -- about $3.3 million less than the 1979 funding.

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Press Release

The San Carlos Apache Tribe has the exclusive rights to manage and develop all recreational facilities, wildlife and fisheries within the San Carlos Reservoir Site, Assistant Secretary Forrest J. Gerard announced today. The Reservoir lies entirely within the exterior boundaries of the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation and is formed by Coolidge Dam on the Gila River, near Globe, Arizona.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs is publishing in the Federal Register a list of 278 Indian tribal entities which are recognized and receiving services from the BIA.

The list includes all Indian tribes, bands, villages, groups and pueblos --except those in the State of Alaska --acknowledged by the Secretary of the Interior to have a political relationship with the United States.

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Press Release

Interior Solicitor Leo M. Krulitz has ruled that the State of New Mexico has no authority to tax royalties paid to the .Jicarilla Apache Tribe for and gas production from tribal lands.

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Press Release

A plan for the distribution and use, of more than $9 million awarded by the Indian Claims Commission to the Lake Superior and Mississippi Bands of Chippewa Indians is being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today. The award is additional compensation for land in Wisconsin and Minnesota ceded by the Indians in 1837 and 1847.

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Press Release

Indian educators will be meeting February 28 to March 2 in Denver, Colo., to review draft regulations required for implementation of Indian sections of the Education Amendments Act of 1978. Title XI of the Act, dealing with Indian education, has a June 27 deadline for publication of some final regulations.

Rick Lavis, Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, said that the steering committee, responsible for implementing Title XI, will also be reporting on the status of task force projects and schedule of future actions.

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Press Release

A series of public hearings on the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 have been scheduled throughout the United States in early March, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

The hearings will be conducted by the National American Indian Court Judges Association and the National Congress of American Indians, under contract with the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

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Press Release

New proposed regulations governing the preparation of a Yurok Indian voting list are being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today.

The establishment of qualifications and standards for such a voting list is the first step toward the election of an interim governing committee and subsequent organization of the Yurok Tribe.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has scheduled public hearings on proposed regulations dealing with the acquisition of trust land, for Indians. Notice of the hearings is being published in the Federal Register.

The proposed regulations were published in the Federal Register July 26, 1978 for review and comment. A number of persons and organizations requested that hearings be held. They expressed concern about the potential removal of land from tax rolls and jurisdictional problems which might arise on lands placed in trust status for Indians.

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Press Release

A plan for the distribution and use, of more than $9 million awarded by the Indian Claims Commission to the Lake Superior and Mississippi Bands of Chippewa Indians fs being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today. The award is additional compensation for land in Wisconsin and Minnesota ceded by the Indians in 1837 and 1847.

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Press Release

Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard has announced that public hearings will be held at seven locations between March 28 and April 13 on proposed formulas for distributing Johnson-O'Malley Act funding to schools serving Indian students.

Six alternative proposed formulas were published in the Federal Register March 9 for review and comment. The formulas will be revised according to comments received by May 1 and submitted to a vote of the tribes. The formula chosen by the tribal vote will be published as a final rule.

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Press Release

The Interior Department today published the 1979 regulations for fishery conservation on parts of the Klamath and Trinity Rivers in Northern California. The plan includes a ban on Indian commercial fishing on the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation, effective April 1, 1979. Non-Indian sale of fish taken from the Klamath River is already prohibited by State law.

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Press Release

Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus today applauded the decision announced March 21 by the State of Utah and the Ute Indian Tribe to return to the conference table to resolve the dispute which threatens the Central Utah Project.

"Both the State and the Tribe have too much at stake in the Central Utah Project to risk unwarranted delays in the Project at this stage," Secretary Andrus said, "Governor Matheson and the Ute Indian people are to be commended for the step they have taken."

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Press Release

Anson A. Baker, an enrolled member of the Mandan-Hidatsa Tribe, has been appointed Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Billings, Montana Area Office, Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Forrest J. Gerard announced today. The appointment was effective April 8, 1979.

Baker has been Superintendent of the Blackfeet Agency at Browning, Montana since 1976.

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Press Release

A plan for the use and distribution of $600,000 awarded to the Seneca Nation of Indians by the Indian Claims Commission is being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs said today.

The award fa compensation for leased lands within the Allegany Reservation in New York State. The major portion, of the leased lands are within the boundaries of the City of Salamanca.

According to the plan, approved by Congress and made effective February l, 1979, 80 percent of the award will be distributed on a per capita basis to members of the Seneca Nation.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus today asked Commerce Secretary Juanita Kreps to seek further needed restrictions in the 1979 Pacific Salmon Plan.

Andrus expressed disappointment and concern about the recent action of the Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council which he said earlier this month voted restrictions for ocean fisheries which will be insufficient to provide for conservation and the allocation between ocean and inside fishermen.

Referring to Interior data analyzing the impact of the proposed ocean fishing regulations, Andrus told Secretary Kreps:

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Press Release

Zane O. Browning, a Chickasaw Indian, has been named Superintendent of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Agency at Ardmore, Oklahoma, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

Browning has been Program Analysis Officer in the BlA's Muskogee Area Office.

The 43-year-old Haskell Indian School alumnus has worked for the Bureau since 1955. He studied Business and Public Administration at Oklahoma State and Oklahoma University. He also completed the Interior's Departmental Management Training Program.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has appointed Bernard W. Topash as the field representative for the Siletz Indian Tribe, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

The position is a newly created office to serve the Oregon Indians who were accorded federally-recognized tribal status by legislation passed November 18, 1977.

Topash, a Snohomish and Potawatomi Indian, has been Administrative Manager of the BIA's Fort Hall Agency in Idaho.

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Press Release

Regulations governing the preparation of a roll of lineal descendants of Michigan and Indiana Potawatomi Indians eligible to share in a judgment award of more than $6 million are being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today.

The award, granted by the Indian Claims Commission, is compensation for lands in Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan ceded to the United States by the Potawatomi Tribe and Nation of Indians during the treaty making period of 1795 to 1833.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has appointed Bernard W. Topash as the field representative for the Siletz Indian Tribe, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

The position is a newly created office to serve the Oregon Indians who were accorded federally-recognized tribal status by legislation passed November 18, 1977.

Topash, a Snohomish and Potawatomi Indian, has been Administrative Manager of the BIA's Fort Hall Agency in Idaho.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus said today that he had reluctantly requested Attorney General Griffin Bell to take legal action to protect the water rights of Indian tribes on five reservations in northern Montana. The suits were filed by the U.S. Department of Justice April 5 in the Federal District Court for Montana.

Andrus said that he asked the Justice Department to file stream adjudication suits in the Federal courts because the Montana legislature was proposing to pass legislation which would give state courts jurisdiction over Indian water rights issues.

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Press Release

Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus said today that Burnett Construction Company of Durango, Colo., has been awarded a $4.5 million contract by the Bureau of Reclamation for construction of 40 miles of collector drains on the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project near Farmington, N.M.

The contract is for work on the 10,000-acre Block No.2 of the 110,000- acre project.

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Press Release

Interior Solicitor Leo M. Krulitz Friday said Indian tribal sovereignty could be endangered unless tribal leaders weigh the political ramifications of tribal decisions as carefully as they weigh other factors.

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Press Release

The 1979 calendar of Indian fairs, exhibits, ceremonials, dances, feasts and other celebrations is now available, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today.

Most of the events in the state-by-state listings occur in the summer or fall months and are open to tourists and other visitors. The pocket-size booklet lists more than 500 items, giving the nature of the activity, dates and locations.

The booklet also contains some summary information about. Indians in the United States and the addresses of Bureau of Indian Affairs' field offices.

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Press Release

Regulations governing the preparation of a Yurok Indian voting list are being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today.

The regulations, establishing criteria and procedures for developing such a voter list, are a first step toward the election of an interim governing committee and subsequent organization of the Yurok Tribe.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil ·D. Andrus said today that the proposed Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will provide a more orderly process for deciding which Federal land will be developed and which will be protected as wilderness.

Andrus said the current Federal organization makes it difficult to assemble and fully analyze the information choices available.

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Press Release

Proposed regulations to implement the provisions of the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (P.L. 95-608) were published in the Federal Register April 23, Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Rick Lavis said today.

Lavis also said that proposed regulations establishing procedures for Tribal Reassumption of jurisdiction over child custody proceedings and a statement of recommended guidelines for use by state courts in Indian child custody cases were published in the same Federal Register issue.

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Press Release

A score of Indian leaders, representing the national Indian community, met in Albuquerque May 3-4 with Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard and staff to be briefed about Gerard's management improvement program for the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

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Press Release

Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus has announced the excavation of the 6.8-mile-long Buckskin Mountains Tunnel is expected to be completed on Thursday, May 24. The tunnel, located near Parker, Ariz., is a major feature of the Central Arizona Project.

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Press Release

Proposed regulations to establish rules and procedures for the conduct of an election of an interim Yurok Tribal governing committee are being published in the Federal Register, Forrest J. Gerard, Assistant Secretary Indian Affairs announced today.

Gerard said the action is in accord with his November 20, 1978, message to the Hoopa Valley and Yurok people and is intended as one of the first steps leading to participation by the Yurok Tribe in the management of the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation.

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Press Release

Proposed regulations effecting major developments and changes in the administration of Bureau of Indian Affairs education programs were published May 22 in the Federal Register, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Rick Lavis said today.

The regulations implement certain provisions of Title XI of the Education Amendments Act of 1978 (P.L. 95-561); and, the Tribally Controlled Community College Assistance Act of 1978 (P.L. 95-471).

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Press Release

The Department of the Interior today released the attached letter from Attorney General Griffin B. Bell to Secretary Cecil D. Andrus concerning the legal principles governing the conduct of the Department of Justice in litigation for the purpose of protecting Indian property rights secured by statutes and treaties.

Honorable Cecil D. Andrus

Secretary of Interior

Washington, D.C.

Dear Mr. Secretary:

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Press Release

A new Bureau of Indian Affairs Agency has been established at Hoquiam, Washington, to serve nine Indian tribes located on the Olympic Peninsula, Assistant Secretary --Indian Affairs, Forrest J Gerard announced today.

Gerard said the new agency will more effectively meet the increasing tribal requests for services to Olympic Peninsula reservations and will improve Bureau performance in meeting responsibilities under the provisions of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (P.L. 93-638).

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs will establish a new Office of Technical Assistance and Training at Brigham City, Utah, on the campus of the BIA ­operated Intermountain Indian School.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has named new Assistant Area Directors for community services and for economic development in its Phoenix office, Acting Deputy Commissioner Martin Seneca announced today.

LaFollette R. Butler, a Cherokee who has been functioning as Seneca's special assistant since October 1978, will be Assistant Area Director for Community Services. His appointment is effective July 1. His reporting date, however, will be dependent on his release from his Washington assignment.

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Press Release

Walter R. Mills, a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, has been appointed Superintendent of the Colorado River Agency at Parker, Arizona, the Bureau of Indian Affairs has announced.

Mills, 43, has been an Indian Self-Determination Specialist in the Phoenix Area Office the past two years. He formerly served as Administrative Manager of the Phoenix Indian School and, earlier, of the Hopi Agency at Keams Canyon, Arizona. He began his career with BIA in 1971 as an instructor at the Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute at Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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Press Release

An analysis of how States and Indian tribes can develop coal mine reclamation plans to comply with provisions of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 is available from the Interior Department's Office of Surface Mining (OSM).

"This guide is intended to assist coal-producing States and Indian tribes in preparing their coal mine reclamation programs so that they can qualify to receive funds for reclaiming their abandoned mine land," said Walter N. Heine, OSM Director.

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Press Release

Regulations to establish two Courts of Indian Offenses, one to serve the Eastern Cherokee Reservation in North Carolina and the other for western Oklahoma Indian tribes served by the Anadarko Area Office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, are being published in the Federal Register, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus and Edward E. Hopson, Sr., President of the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation in Alaska, today signed an agreement conveying land to the Arctic Slope Eskimos mandated by the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971.

"In addition to resolving major land issues, this agreement "is the first in the history of the Native Claims Settlement Act in which private lands are placed under the Endangered Species Act," Andrus noted

Features of the pact include:

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus today announced he was cOITU11-itting the Department to participate in efforts for salmon rearing and other cooperative action to attempt to reverse the decline in the salmon and steelhead fisheries on the Klamath and Trinity Rivers in Northern California.

In a letter to Huey D. Johnson, Secretary for Resources in California Andrus said:

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Press Release

Proposed regulations establishing procedures for Indian tribes seeking to form tribal constitutions or charters or make changes in existing ones are being published in the Federal Register, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced today.

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Press Release

Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today that an agreement has been reached with the All Indian Pueblo Council to transfer the senior high programs (10th, 11th and 12th grades) of the Albuquerque Indian School (AIS) to the campus of the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) in Santa Fe.

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Press Release

Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard has issued guidelines to the BlA's Minneapolis Area Director for dealing with certain issues raised by recent actions of the Red Lake Tribal Council.

Referring to the Council's removal from office of the elected tribal treasurer, Stephanie Hanson, Gerard stressed that he regarded "the matter as one that should primarily be resolved within the framework of tribal governmental processes."

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has been recruiting to fill 45 clerical and professional positions in its Central Office of Indian Education in Washington, D.C., Director Earl Barlow announced today.

Barlow said that the openings have been created by a reshaping and strengthening of the BIA's central education office to meet current education needs of Indians and Alaska Natives.

Eight vacancy announcements for positions of GS-11to GS-15 levels were issued July 9 and the remaining 37 are expected to be issued before the end of the month.

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Press Release

Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard has announced that Sidney L. Mills, Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs' Albuquerque Area, will serve as Acting Deputy Commissioner of Indian Affairs, beginning July 30.

In this capacity Mills will direct the day-to-day operations of the Bureau of Indian Affairs until, the announcement says, "the appointment of a Commissioner takes place."

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Press Release

The Department of the Interior announced in the Federal Register July 26 that a land use plan and a draft environmental impact statement for the addition of land to the Havasupai Indian Reservation are now available. The Department also announced that public hearings on the land use plan will be held September 11, 12 and 14.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has announced that final regulations to implement the provisions of the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (P.L. 95- 608) are being published in the Federal Register.

The Act deals with the proper care of Indian children needing adoptive or foster home care. Its main objective is to restrict .the placement of Indian children by non-Indian social agencies in non-Indian homes and environments.

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Press Release

Regulations to establish rules and procedures for the conduct of an election of an interim Yurok Tribal governing committee are being published in the Federal Register, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

Gerard said the action is in accord with his November 20, 1978 message to the Hoopa Valley and Yurok people and is intended as one of the first steps leading to participation by the Yurok Tribe in the management of the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation.

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Press Release

Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus released the attached statement and fact sheet today concerning the Pacific Northwest salmon fisheries, at a joint news conference held in Seattle with Senator Warren G. Magnuson of Washington.

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Press Release

Interior Solicitor Leo M. Krulitz announced today that a tentative agreement has been reached on a proposed legislative settlement which would give the Cayuga Indian Nation a 548l-acre reservation and an $8 million trust fund in return for extinguishment of the Nation's claim to 64,000 acres in Seneca and Cayuga Counties New York.

"I am delighted to report that all parties to the negotiations--the Cayuga Nation, the State of New York and the Departments of Agriculture and 1nterior--have worked out an agreement on the Cayuga claim," said Krulitz.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a $6.6 million contract for relocating and lining 61/2 miles of main canal on the Colorado River Indian Reservation surrounding the town of Parker, Ariz., Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus announced today.

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Press Release

The final report of the Indian Religious Freedom Task Force has been sent to the Congress Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus said today.

Andrus chaired the task force, which was established pursuant to President Carter's signing into law the American Indian Religious Freedom Act of 1978. More than thirty Federal agencies were represented on the task force. The report to the Congress was mandated by the Act.

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Press Release

The formula for distributing Johnson-Q' Malley Act funding to schools serving Indian students will be determined by a run-off election to be conducted this fall, Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary Rick Lavis announced today.

The 1978 Education Amendments Act (P.L. 95-561) requires that the distribution formula be chosen by a majority vote of the tribes and Alaska village groups.

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Press Release

The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs and the Bureau of Indian Affairs in a cooperative effort with the Department of the Interior's Office of Budget have initiated a study of 14 off-reservation Indian boarding schools, Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard announced today.

The purpose of the study to be completed this fall is to provide a basis for planning more effective and efficient uses of the facilities, funds and personnel of the schools.

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Press Release

A public meeting will be held in the Eisenhower College Athletic Center, Seneca Falls, New York, September 11 to discuss the proposed Cayuga Indian Land Claim Settlement announced on August 20.

The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. The time is a half hour earlier than originally announced and the place has been changed from the Delavan Little Theatre to allow ample room and time for all who wish to comment on the proposed settlement.

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Press Release

Bureau of Indian Affairs education administrators nationwide met August 7-9 in Duluth, Minn., to discuss the implementation of new Federal laws affecting Indian education programs, BIA Director of Indian Education Programs Earl Barlow said today.

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Press Release

Extinguishment of all past Narragansett Indian claims in the State of Rhode Island was announced by the Interior Department today following publication in the Federal Register of findings by Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus that the State legislature had enacted the necessary enabling legislation.

Under terms of the Rhode Island Indian Claims Settlement Act, the Narragansett Indians will receive 1800 acres of land in Charlestown, Rhode Island, in return for the relinquishment of all their land claims.

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Press Release

The Crow Indians are the first Indian Tribe to receive advanced funding to plan abandoned coal mine reclamation, Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus announced today.

The Tribe will get $156,545 to help prepare its reclamation program. The funding became available with the signing of the cooperative agreement between the Tribe and Interior's Office of Surface Mining (OSM).

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Press Release

Interior Solicitor Leo M. Krulitz announced today he will not ask the Justice Departn1ent to go to court on behalf of the Shinnecock Indians who are seeking restoration of 3,150 acres in the Town of Southampton, New York, which they claim is their aboriginal territory most in violation of federal law.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has named new superintendents for the Blackfeet Agency in Montana and the Uintah/Ouray Agency in Utah, Acting Deputy Commissioner Sidney Mills announced today.

Michael A. Fairbanks, superintendent at the Michigan Agency, Sault Ste Marie, Michigan, will be the new agency head at the 950,000 acre Blackfeet Reservation headquartered at Browning, Montana. Fairbanks, age 43, an enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Chippewas, attended Bemidji State and North Dakota State majoring in social sciences.

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Press Release

Jon C. Wade, an enrolled member of the Santee Sioux Tribe, has been appointed President of the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) at Santa Fe, New Mexico, Acting Deputy Commissioner of Indian Affairs Sidney Mills announced today.

Wade has been director of the Division of Education Assistance for the Bureau of Indian Affairs since 1975. He had previously been Superintendent of the Phoenix Indian School and educational assistance officer for the BIA's Aberdeen, South Dakota area office.

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Press Release

W. Richard West, a Cheyenne artist, sculptor, and educator from Oklahoma, has been appointed a Commissioner of the Indian Arts-and Crafts Board, Secretary of the Interior Ceci1 D • Andrus announced today.

West's art work is in many major museum and private collections, and he has received numerous awards including the Waite Phillips Trophy presented by the Philbrook Art Center. From 1947 to 1970 he was director of the Art Department of' Bacone College, and then until 1978 he served as chairman or the Humanities Division at Haskell Indian Junior College. He

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Press Release

A move to provide better governmental services to Alaska Natives by the Bureau of Indian Affairs begins on September 24, 1979. Assistant Secretary of Interior for Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard today announced that Price, Waterhouse and Company, a well-known consulting and accounting/firm with Alaska experience, will review the BIA area office in Juneau.

The study is part of Gerard's management improvement program to streamline and restructure the Bureau offices to serve Indian people in an effective and efficient manner.

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Press Release

Regulations implementing the provisions of Public Law 95-471, the Tribally Controlled Community College Assistance Act of 1978, are being published in the Federal Register, Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary Rick Lavis said today.

The regulations prescribe procedures for providing financial and technical assistance to Indian community colleges and, in a separate part, to the Navajo Community College.

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Press Release

Sidney L. Mills, Acting Deputy Commissioner, announced today the appointment of three new Assistant Area Directors for the Bureau of Indian Affairs' office in Aberdeen, S. Dak.

Richard D. Drapeaux, formerly Deputy Area Director in Aberdeen will be the Assistant Area Director for Human Resources. This office will supervise the office of Employment Assistance, Social Services, Tribal Government, Law Enforcement, Housing and Indian Business Development.

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Press Release

Acting Bureau of Indian Affairs Deputy Commissioner Sidney L. Mills has announced that the Minneapolis Area Office reorganization task force is working on the implementation of the reorganization of the Minneapolis office. The final restructuring of the office is scheduled to be completed by April, 1980.

The change is a continuation of Assistant Secretary of Interior for Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard's commitment to provide better service to the tribes in the five states covered by the Minneapolis area office.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a $20.4 million contract for construction of laterals and pumping plants for Block 5 of the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project in New Mexico, Secretary of the Interior Cecil D. Andrus announced today.

Granite Construction Co., Watsonville, Calif., has received the contract based on its low bid at the August 6 bid opening in Farmington, N.M., where the project headquarters are located. Granite has 580 days to complete the work.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus said today he was "pleased by the White House announcement that President Carter had nominated William Hallett, a Red Lake Chippewa, to be Commissioner of Indian Affairs."

Andrus said that the "filling of the Commissioner's post with a competent, knowledgeable man like Bill Hallett will be good for both the Indian community and the Department of the Interior."

Hallett's nomination was sent to the Senate September 28. A tentative date of November 13 has been set for the confirmation hearings.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus said today that the energy crisis presents Indian tribes with opportunities to break the cycle of dependence which has plagued their people for more than a century.

"For too long, too many Indian people have been -- through no fault of their own -- too dependent upon the Federal government," Andrus said in a speech before the National Congress of American Indians in Albuquerque, N.M. "The energy crisis offers an opportunity for many tribes to break that cycle of dependence which has plagued your people."

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Press Release

Proposed revisions to regulations dealing with the tribal purchase of certain property interests of decedents under special laws applicable to the Yakima Tribes of Washington, the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, and the Nez Perce Tribe of Idaho are being published in the Federal Register, the Department of the Interior's Office of Hearings and Appeals announced today.

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Press Release

Burton Rider, a Gros Ventre-Cree Indian, has been named Assistant Area Director for the Bureau of Indian Affairs' Billings, Montana office, Acting Deputy Commissioner Sidney L. Mills said today.

Rider, 49, has been Superintendent of the Fort Peck Agency at Poplar, Montana. His appointment in the area office will be effective October 21 He succeeds Maurice W. (Bill) Babby who has accepted a position in the Office of the Commissioner in Washington, D.C.

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Press Release

The Department of the Interior is publishing notice in the Federal Register on its proposal to acknowledge the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians bf Northern Michigan as an Indian tribe, Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard said today

The formal acknowledgment as an Indian tribe, which includes the recognition of a government to-government relationship with the United States, would entitle the Grand Traverse Band to the same privileges and immunities available to other federally recognized tribes by virtue of their status as Indian tribes.

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The Bureau of Indian Affairs' advisory committee for exceptional children will meet October 26-27 in Phoenix, Arizona, to examine and discuss unmet needs of exceptional Indian children, the Director of Indian Education Programs, Earl Barlow said today.

The Committee operates in accordance with the requirements of the amended Education of the Handicapped Act.

The meeting, which will be at the Los Olivos Hotel from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., is open to the public.

Notice of the meeting is being published in the Federal Register.

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has established a new agency at Siletz, Oregon to serve the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, Acting Deputy Commissioner Sidney Mills announced today.

The federally recognized status of the Siletz Tribes, ended under the Termination Act of 1954, was restored by an Act of November 18, 1977.

The BIA has had a field office at Siletz under the direction of a field representative, Bernard Topash. He will continue as the officer in charge until further notice. Steps are now being taken to fill the position of agency superintendent, Mills said.

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Press Release

Interior Solicitor Leo M. Krulitz said today that any water needed for mineral development on western public lands will have to be acquired by developers through states systems and under applicable state law and not through the assertion by the United States of a federal water right.

Krulitz, speaking to the annual convention of the Wyoming Water Development Association in Casper, said it has been and continues to be the policy of the Carter Administration that the states must be allowed to allocate their water resources in their own way.

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Press Release

Record highs for conveyances of Federal land in Alaska to both the State of Alaska and Alaska Native corporations were set in the year ended September 30, the Department of the Interior announced today. A total of 1.5 million acres passed to the State under the terms of the Statehood Act and 4.8 million acres were conveyed to Native ownership under the provisions of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

"The acreage conveyed both to the State and Natives was the result of a strong policy to emphasize conveyances, and a tremendous effort on the part of the reorganize

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Press Release

Under Secretary of the Interior James A. Joseph has directed the Bureau of Indian Affairs to take action against the Red Lake Indian Tribe-- including the possible rejection of applications for federal grants and contracts--until the tribe allows auditors access to its

books to ensure federal funds are being properly spent.

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Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard and Acting Deputy Commissioner, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Sidney Mills today announced a revised Action Plan for improving personnel management in the Bureau.

The revitalized Personnel Management Action Plan which is now being implemented places renewed emphasis on many continuing needs and adds a number of new items of major import to the effective accomplishment of the Bureau's mission. Highlights include:

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Press Release

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has scheduled eleven field hearings to discuss education policies and standards for Indian schools funded by the Bureau, Director of Indian Education Programs Earl Barlow announced today.

Policies for the Bureau-funded schools were published October 9 in the Federal Register and a draft statement of standards has been circulated by mail to tribal officials and school boards.

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The Bureau of Indian Affairs has announced the appointments of Everett Prince as Superintendent of the Bethel, Alaska agency and Irving Billy as Superintendent of the Western Navajo agency at Tuba City, Arizona. Both appointments were effective November 4.

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Applications for grant funds for Indian tribes and organizations to use in the establishment and operation of Indian child and family service programs are now being accepted, Interior Assistant Secretary Forrest Gerard announced today.

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American Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Villages have completed balloting on a distribution formula as required by the 1978 Education Amendments Act (P.L. 95-561). After a year long effort, the Indians and Alaska Natives voted to keep the Johnson-O'Malley Act funding formula used by the Bureau of Indian Affairs during the last four years.

The Johnson-O'Malley Act provides funding assistance for supplemental programs in non-Federal schools serving Indian students. In fiscal year 1979 the appropriation for this purpose, serving approximately 171,000 students, was $31,675,000.

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Press Release

Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Forrest J. Gerard said today (December 4) that the challenge of educating Indian children is in the hands of tribal governments.

Gerard, speaking to the eleventh annual convention of the National Indian Education Association in Denver, said the tribes face a challenge "to raise a whole child, to instruct the intellect in the laws of nature, to educate a nation." "Children of the 1980's will determine the future of the Indian people," he said.

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Press Release

Regulations governing the off-reservation treaty-rights fishing of the Bay Mills Indian Community and the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians in Michigan were published in the Federal Register November 15, Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus said today

The Federal regulations were developed pursuant to a September 5 memorandum of understanding between the tribes and the Interior Department concerning the regulation of treaty Indian fishing in the Great Lakes and connecting waters.

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Press Release

Under Secretary of the Interior James A. Joseph announced today that the ceremonial installation of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs William E. Hallett, will be held on December 14, 1979, in Denver, Colorado.

Joseph will administer the oath of office to Hallett in a 10:00 a.m. ceremony at the Denver Marina Hotel. Denver was chosen for the ceremony because of its central location.

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Press Release

Forrest J. Gerard, Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian Affairs, today announced his resignation effective January 19, 1980, to re-enter private business.

Gerard, a Presidential appointee who has served since September 1977 as the Department's first Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, said in a letter to President Carter: ''My decision to re-enter private business was not easily reached. In these difficult times, however, my responsibility to assist two of my daughters with their college education left me but a single choice."

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard today announced a policy decision governing the procedures for planning Indian water projects.

The new policy will provide for a more appropriate analysis of water development projects on Indian lands as part of the implementation of the Principles and Standards for Planning Water and Related Land Resources of the Water Resources Council.

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Press Release

Interior Secretary Cecil D. Andrus and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Forrest Gerard today announced a policy decision governing the procedures for planning Indian water projects.

The new policy will provide for a more appropriate analysis of water development projects on Indian lands as part of the implementation of the Principles and Standards for Planning Water and Related Land Resources of the Water Resources Council.

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