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News by Year

Press Release

PUBLIC MEETING #5

Monday, April 29, 2013
8:00 am ‐ 5:00 pm (local time)

MEETING LOCATION

One Century Place Conference Center
Conference Room #104 26 Century Blvd.
Nashville, TN 37214
For meeting agenda and related materials go to: National Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform

ONLINE ACCESS

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Press Release

PUBLIC MEETING #6

Friday, June 7, 2013
8:00 am ‐ 5:00 pm (local time)

MEETING LOCATION

Courtyard Marriott Oklahoma City Downtown
2 West Road
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73102
For meeting agenda and related materials go to: http://www.doi.gov/cobell/commission/index.cfm

ONLINE ACCESS

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Press Release

PUBLIC WEBINAR MEETING #8

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

4:30 pm - 5:30 pm (Eastern Standard Time)

ADDRESS TO REGISTER

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/774101625 (No longer valid)

Instructions on how to join the webinar will be sent to your email address

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that Wendi Cole, a member of the Crow Creek Sioux Tribe in South Dakota and student at Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, has been named a 2013 New Century Scholar and selected for the All-USA Community College Academic Team.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced the Bureau of Indian Education’s (BIE) intent to establish a Committee to help evaluate and recommend revisions to regulations for determining Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for its schools under the No Child Left Behind Act. The BIE is also seeking comments on the proposal to establish this Committee and nominations for its membership by March 4, 2013.

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By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to promote and sustain prosperous and resilient Native American tribal governments, it is hereby ordered as follows:

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NCAI Mid Year Conference LIVE STREAM - Department of the Interior, Secretary Sally Jewell Addresses the Third General Assembly

Time: 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Pacific Time

Live Stream Link: http://youtu.be/mUQ2v1HIDLM

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Press Release

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to empowering American Indian tribal nations and strengthening their economies, today Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn joined Pueblo of Sandia Governor Victor Montoya to approve one of the first tribal regulations in the nation issued under the newly enacted Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership Act (HEARTH Act).

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WASHINGTON — On Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013, the Department of the Interior will hold the third and last in a series of consultation sessions on its Initial Implementation Plan outlining how Interior will carry out the land consolidation component of the historic Cobell Settlement. The meeting will take place in Seattle, Wash. The first and second consultation meetings were held Jan. 31 in Prior Lake, Minn., and Feb. 6 in Rapid City, S.D.

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Washington - The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is requesting individuals who are interested in serving on the National Advisory Council (NAC) to apply for appointment. The NAC is an advisory committee established to ensure effective and ongoing coordination of federal preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation for natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.

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WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (OJS) will hold the first of three training sessions to improve the trial advocacy skills of tribal court judges and prosecutors in dealing with driving-under-the-influence (DUI) and driving-while-intoxicated (DWI) cases. The session will be held Feb. 27 through March 1 in Albuquerque, N.M.

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FORT TOTTEN, N.D. – Deputy Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Lawrence S. Roberts reported personally to Spirit Lake tribal members today on efforts the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) has taken to-date to address child safety and protection issues on the Spirit Lake Reservation in North Dakota. Roberts represented Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn, whose testimony at a congressional hearing also taking place today precluded his attendance at the community event.

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WASHINGTON – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant Secretary- Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today praised the passage of the Violence Against Women Act, which includes important provisions for federally recognized tribal communities, saying it advances the progress the nation has made in combating violence against women by providing greater protections against homicide, rape, assault and battery in the home, workplace and on school campuses across the country.

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STANDING ROCK, N.D. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (OJS) officers, working with tribal and county law enforcement, were instrumental in apprehending an “armed and dangerous” adult male approximately 12 miles from Fort Yates community on the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota. The individual was wanted on a federal warrant for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamines.

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WASHINGTON – As part of President Obama’s commitment to honoring a nation-to-nation relationship with Indian Country, four cabinet-level departments today joined the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation in releasing an action plan to strengthen the protection of Indian sacred sites and provide greater tribal access to these heritage areas.

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ALBUQUERQUE, NM – On Thursday, March 14, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant Secretary Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn will visit New Mexico to participate in two historic signing ceremonies for Indian Country.

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WASHINGTON D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced that the American Indian College Fund has been selected to administer the student Scholarship Fund authorized by the Cobell Settlement, with a fifth of the annual scholarships to be awarded by the American Indian Graduate Center. Secretary Salazar is also seeking nominations for two of the members who will serve on the Board of Trustees that oversees the educational fund.

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"We are excited about President Obama's selection of Sally Jewell for Secretary of the Interior," says Chairman Billy Frank of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission. "We think she's a great choice."

Jewell, the former chief executive officer for outdoor gear giant REI, grew up in Washington state and knows the issues important to Indian tribes, Frank said. "She's one of us, and we couldn't be more pleased that she will be leading the Department of Interior for the next four years," he said.

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WASHINGTON, DC – On February 15, 2013, President Obama will welcome to the White House the recipients of the 2012 Presidential Citizens Medal, the nation’s second-highest civilian honor.

“It is my distinguished honor to award these individuals the 2012 Citizens Medal for their commitment to public service,” said President Obama. “Their selflessness and courage inspire us all to look for opportunities to better serve our communities and our country.”

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform will hold its next public meeting Feb. 12-13, 2013, Seattle, Wash. The meeting will be preceded by a public youth-outreach session the evening of Feb. 11.

“The Department of the Interior has a very important role to play in administering the federal trust responsibility, and the Commission is looking forward to discussing with the public how we can work together on ways to improve the Department’s management of Indian trust lands and assets,” said Commission Chair Fawn Sharp.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, the Department of the Interior will hold the second of three tribal consultation sessions on its Initial Implementation Plan outlining how Interior will carry out the land consolidation component of the historic Cobell Settlement. The meeting will take place in Rapid City, S.D., with the remaining session to be held Feb. 14 in Seattle, Wash. The first consultation meeting was held in Prior Lake, Minn., on Jan. 31.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Thursday, Jan. 31., 2013, the Department of the Interior will hold the first of three tribal consultation sessions on its Initial Implementation Plan outlining how Interior will carry out the land consolidation component of the historic Cobell Settlement. The first meeting will take place in Prior Lake, Minn., with the remaining sessions to be held Feb. 6 in Rapid City, S.D., and Feb. 14 in Seattle, Wash.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services/Tribal Justice Support (BIA-OJS/TJS) and the Indian Affairs Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED) have partnered with the Federal Reserve Banks of Minneapolis, San Francisco, and Kansas City, Mo., to present three training workshops designed specifically for tribal judges and attorneys on the topic of secured transactions.

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WASHINGTON, DC– On Wednesday, January 16, 2013, the Department of the Interior will participate in a 2:00 pm (Eastern Time) conference call and webinar hosted by the National Congress of American Indians to inform and clarify roles and responsibilities regarding the recent Cobell Settlement trust administration class payments.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced the collaborative initiative between the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Spirit Lake Tribe of North Dakota to improve the health, safety and welfare of children being placed in foster care through the use of mobile fingerprinting units. Under the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006, all adults in a household where minor children are to be placed must be fingerprinted as an integral part of the background investigation.

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WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (OJS) will hold the last in a series of six training sessions to improve the trial advocacy skills of tribal court prosecutors, defenders and judges on January 15-17, 2013, in Albuquerque, N.M. This training session will focus on cases dealing with illegal narcotics.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today issued the following statement on the passing of Chickasaw Nation Ambassador Charles Blackwell:

“Today, Indian Country lost a distinguished leader whose eloquence and diplomacy in promoting self-determination for the Chickasaw Nation and all tribes was legendary. As the Chickasaw Nation’s ambassador to the United States, Charles Blackwell personified the nation-to-nation relationship, giving his people a voice at the highest levels of government.”

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Press Release

SANTA FE, NM – As part of President Obama’s commitment to empowering American Indian tribal nations and strengthening their economies, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today joined New Mexico Governor Susanna Martinez and leaders from four Pueblo tribes—the Tesuque, Nambe, Pojoaque and San Ildefonso—at the Santa Fe Indian School to execute settlement documents and celebrate the historic New Mexico vs. Aamodt water rights settlement.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – President Obama’s fiscal year (FY) 2014 budget request for Indian Affairs, which includes the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE), is $2.6 billion – a $31.3 million increase above the FY 2012 enacted level. The proposed budget maintains the President’s commitment to meeting the government’s responsibilities to the 566 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribes, while exercising fiscal responsibility and improving government operations and efficiency.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) will reopen its search for a new regional director of the Bureau’s Alaska Regional Office. The BIA will begin soliciting applicants for the Senior Executive Service (SES) position, which is located in Anchorage, starting on April 22, 2013.

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WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform will hold its next public meeting on April 29, 2013, in Nashville, Tennessee. An online component of the meeting will be available for those who are unable to attend.

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WASHINGTON – Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Director Michael Black will deliver the keynote address at the 22nd Annual Indian Country Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Service on Thursday, May 2, 2013. The Office of Justice Services hosts the event at the Bureau of Indian Affairs United States Indian Police Academy in Artesia, N.M. to honor and commemorate tribal, state, local and federal law enforcement officers working on federal Indian lands and in tribal communities who have given their lives in the line of duty.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (OJS) will hold the second of three training sessions to improve the trial advocacy skills of tribal court judges and prosecutors in dealing with driving-while-intoxicated (DWI) cases. The session, which will provide advanced training in DWI cases, is being held May 1-3 in Flagstaff, Ariz.

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WASHINGTON – Indian Affairs will hold the second of three training workshops designed for tribal judges and attorneys on the topic of secured transactions. The training, to be held on May 8-9, 2013, in Bloomington, Minn., will be conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ (BIA) Office of Justice Services/Tribal Justice Support (BIA-OJS/TJS) and the Indian Affairs Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED).

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WASHINGTON – On May 15, 2013, at 9:30 a.m. Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn will participate in a roundtable discussion with tribal, state and other federal government representatives to discuss the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA). The discussion will help lead to a greater understanding of ICWA’s purpose and implementation. This discussion is part of the Great Plains ICWA summit: Bring Our Children Home and Keep Our Families Strong that will take place May 15-17, 2013, at the Best Western Ramkota Hotel and Convention Center in Rapid City, S.D.

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WASHINGTON – For the first time in their histories, the National Museum of the American Indian and the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services will co-host a special exhibit of the Indian Country Law Enforcement Officers Memorial during the 2013 National Police Week. The special exhibit will be located in the Museum’s Potomac Atrium from May 13 through 17.

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WASHINGTON – Because of a high level of interest, the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (OJS) is providing legal training it successfully held last year to new groups of tribal court prosecutors, defenders and judges to improve their trial advocacy skills. The training focuses on cases involving the trafficking of illegal narcotics, domestic violence and sexual assault on adults and children.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that Charles Addington, associate director of field operations for the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Office of Justice Services, has been named a finalist by the Partnership for Public Service for its 2013 Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals. Addington, an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation, is among 31 finalists, and the only Interior Department employee, in seven medal categories who were announced on May 7.

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced Tribal Wildlife Grants awards to Native American tribes in 14 states to fund a wide range of conservation projects.

“The mindful stewardship of fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats is a value that tribal nations share with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,” said Service Director Dan Ashe. “Tribal Wildlife Grants create opportunities for us to work together in a variety of ways, including species restoration, fish passage, protection of migratory birds, and coping with long-term effects of a changing climate.”

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WASHINGTON – Today, Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn issued for public comment a proposed rule designed to demonstrate the Administration’s commitment to restoring tribal homelands and furthering economic development on Indian reservations. The proposed rule will provide for greater notice of land-into-trust decisions and clarify the mechanisms for judicial review depending on whether the land is taken into trust by the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, or by an official of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn issued a positive Secretarial Determination for a tribal gaming application for the Kaw Nation of Oklahoma. The determination now goes to the State of Oklahoma for their consideration.

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WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform will hold the sixth in a series of public meetings on June 7, 2013, in Oklahoma City, Okla., to gather information towards developing a comprehensive evaluation of the Department of the Interior’s management and administration of Indian trust assets.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Department of the Interior has a final rule for Indian Affairs to implement the Buy Indian Act of 1910 (25 U.S.C. 47, as amended), which authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to set aside procurement contracts for American Indian- and Alaska Native-owned and controlled small businesses. The final rule has been informed by public comment and consultation with tribes on the draft proposal, which was published in 2010.

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WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services will offer the next in its series of training sessions for tribal court personnel on June 17-20, 2013, in Grand Forks, N.D., with cases focusing on sexual assault on children.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.

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WASHINGTON – As part of President Obama’s commitment to strengthen the nation-to-nation relationship with Native Americans and Alaska Natives, Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced the availability of a discussion draft of potential changes to the Department of the Interior’s Part 83 process for acknowledging certain Indian groups as federally recognized tribes. The discussion draft is intended to provide tribes and the public an early opportunity to provide input on potential changes to the Part 83 process.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn will speak on Tuesday, June 25 at the opening of the National Congress of American Indians’ 2013 Mid-Year Conference in Reno, Nev. The National Congress of American Indians is the oldest and largest association of tribal governments in the United States. The Assistant Secretary will update tribal leaders on a number of Interior Department activities in Indian Country including:

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following extensive consultations with American Indian leaders, the Department of the Interior today made a number of announcements related to the significant efforts underway for the purchase of fractional interests in American Indian trust lands from willing sellers.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday, June 18, Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes will hold a news media teleconference to discuss the next phase of the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations (Buy-Back Program), including launching pilot efforts to establish cooperative agreements with Tribal governments. Hayes will be joined by Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell will hold a news media conference call with reporters to discuss President Obama’s establishment of the White House Council on Native American Affairs. Members of the media may participate in the call by dialing 1-888-810-6756 and providing the access code INTERIOR.

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Albuquerque, N.M. -- Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) will undergo a comprehensive evaluation visit October 7-9, 2013 by a team representing The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The public is being invited to submit comments on the school until September 9, 2013. SIPI is currently in “candidacy” status and is a candidate for initial accreditation by the Commission.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today issued the following statement on the passing of former Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Chief Executive Marge Anderson:

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WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services will offer the next in its series of training sessions for tribal court personnel on July 22-25, 2013, in Reno, Nev., with cases focusing on illegal narcotics. Because of a high level of interest, the Office of Justice Services (OJS) is continuing to provide legal training it successfully held in 2012 to new groups of tribal court prosecutors, defenders and judges to improve their trial advocacy skills.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today convened the inaugural meeting of the White House Council on Native American Affairs, launching President Obama’s national policy initiative to make federal agencies work more collaboratively and effectively with federally recognized tribes to advance their vital economic and social priorities.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to empower tribal nations, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, on behalf of the United States, today signed an historic agreement at the Department of the Interior guaranteeing water rights for the White Mountain Apache Tribe of Arizona. The agreement will also provide funding for infrastructure to deliver clean drinking water to the Reservation, as well as water security for the City of Phoenix and other downstream water users.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday, July 30, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell will sign an historic agreement at the Department of the Interior that will guarantee water rights for the White Mountain Apache Tribe of Arizona and provide water security for the City of Phoenix and other downstream water users. The ceremony will be live-streamed to the public.

Secretary Jewell will be joined by White Mountain Apache Chairman Ronnie Lupe, Former Senator John Kyl, U.S. Representative Ann Kirkpatrick and other federal, tribal and state dignitaries.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to empower tribal nations, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, on behalf of the United States, today signed an historic agreement at the Department of the Interior guaranteeing water rights for the White Mountain Apache Tribe of Arizona. The agreement will also provide funding for infrastructure to deliver clean drinking water to the Reservation, as well as water security for the City of Phoenix and other downstream water users.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today issued the following statement on the passing of Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana Chairman Earl J. Barbry Sr.:

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WASHINGTON – The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services will offer the next in its series of training sessions for tribal court personnel on Aug. 6-9, 2013, in Philadelphia, Miss., with presentations that focus on domestic violence.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn announced that the Department is extending the opportunity for public comment on a Preliminary Discussion Draft of potential changes to the Federal Acknowledgment Process by more than 30 days to September 25, 2013. This extended period is in response to written requests as well as requests received at the tribal consultation sessions and public meetings held in July and August.

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WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform will hold the seventh in a series of public meetings on Aug. 19, 2013, in Anchorage, Alaska, as part of the Commission’s comprehensive evaluation of the Department of the Interior’s management and administration of Indian trust assets. The meeting also will be accessible by teleconference and Webinar.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Department of the Interior today announced the launch of a new, comprehensive resource for Indian landowners and tribal governments seeking information about the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations (Buy-Back Program).

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today issued a positive Secretarial Determination to the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin for an off-reservation class III gaming facility located on a 228-acre parcel in the City of Kenosha, Wisconsin. The land can be acquired in trust for gaming purposes only if the Governor concurs in the determination within one year.

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WASHINGTON, DC- On Wednesday, November 13, President Obama will host the White House Tribal Nations Conference at the Department of the Interior. The conference will provide leaders from the 566 federally recognized tribes the opportunity to interact directly with the President and members of the White House Council on Native American Affairs. Each federally recognized tribe will be invited to send one representative to the conference.

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WASHINGTON – The Department of the Interior – Office of the Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), and Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) will provide limited services to tribes, students and individuals during the shutdown of the federal government. Of the total 8,143 employees, a total of 2,860 will be furloughed.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to help strengthen American Indian communities, the Department of the Interior today released its revised Land Buy-Back Program Valuation Plan. The Appraisal Foundation (TAF), the nation’s foremost authority on appraisal standards and qualifications, performed a comprehensive review of the draft Plan, which was revised to incorporate all of TAF’s recommendations.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to help strengthen American Indian communities, the Department of the Interior today released its revised Land Buy-Back Program Valuation Plan. The Appraisal Foundation (TAF), the nation’s foremost authority on appraisal standards and qualifications, performed a comprehensive review of the draft Plan, which was revised to incorporate all of TAF’s recommendations.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to help strengthen Indian communities, and following nation-to-nation consultations with tribal leaders, the Department of the Interior is expanding the implementation strategy for the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations (Buy-Back Program).

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WASHINGTON, DC – In advance of the 5th White House Tribal Nations Conference, Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced a final rule that demonstrates the Obama Administration’s continuing commitment to restoring tribal homelands and furthering economic development on Indian reservations.

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WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform will hold its final public meeting on Nov. 20, 2013, via webinar. The Commission is completing a comprehensive evaluation of the Department of the Interior’s management and administration of Indian trust assets within a two-year period and will offer recommendations to the Secretary of the Interior of how to improve in the future.

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SHAWNEE, Okla. – On Monday, November 25, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn will visit Oklahoma to participate in a signing ceremony with Chairman John Barrett of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, approving the tribe’s leasing regulations in accordance with the HEARTH Act. The law restores the authority of federally recognized American Indian tribes to control the leasing of their trust lands, thereby promoting self-determination and economic development.

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SHAWNEE, Okla. – As part of President Obama’s commitment to self-determination of tribal nations, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today joined Citizen Potawatomi Nation Chairman John Barrett to formally approve tribal leasing regulations that will help spur investment and commercial development on the nation’s trust lands in central Oklahoma.

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WASHINGTON – Bureau of Indian Affairs Director Michael S. Black has named Weldon “Bruce” Loudermilk as Regional Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Alaska Regional Office in Anchorage. Loudermilk, an enrolled member of the Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Indian Reservation in Montana, had been serving as regional director of the Bureau’s Great Plains Regional Office in Aberdeen, S.D., since June 20, 2010.

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WASHINGTON – The Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform has added a public meeting on Dec. 10, 2013, to its schedule, which will be held via webinar. The meeting will gather public comments to help the Commission complete a comprehensive evaluation of the Department of the Interior’s administration of nearly $4 billion in Indian trust assets and will offer recommendations to the Secretary of the Interior about how to improve in the future.

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LAGUNA, NM – On Wednesday, December 11, as part of the Obama Administration’s commitment to strengthen education for Native youth, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn will visit New Mexico to tour a Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) tribally controlled grant school located on the Pueblo of Laguna reservation.

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Press Release

WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary Kevin K. Washburn today announced that he has named Dr. Charles M. “Monty” Roessel as Director of the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE). Roessel, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, had served as the acting director since February 2013.

The announcement came today as Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, Assistant Secretary Washburn and Director Roessel were in Laguna, New Mexico to tour a Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) tribally controlled grant school located on the Pueblo of Laguna reservation.

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Washington, D.C. – Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn announced today that the Ewiiaapaayp Band of Kumeyaay Indians and the Kaw Nation are the latest tribes to receive clearance of tribal leasing codes to enable them to handle leasing of their own Indian lands without having to obtain the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) approval.

The clearance came under the Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership Act (HEARTH Act), signed by President Obama in July 2012.

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WASHINGTON - Assistant Secretary -Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn issued a Record of Decision this week to approve an application submitted by the Ewiiaapaayp Band of Kumeyaay Indians to lease up to 720 acres of reservation land to Tule Wind, LLC, for a portion of the Tule Wind Energy Project located near San Diego, California.

The lease approval will allow the Ewiiaapaayp Band, which is located in Alpine, California, to move forward with the construction, maintenance, and operation of up to 20 wind turbines and related facilities on the tribe’s trust lands.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED) is soliciting grant proposals from Indian tribes for projects to build tribal capacity for energy resource development.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED) Division of Energy and Mineral Development is soliciting grant proposals from Indian tribes and Alaska Native corporations for projects that promote the processing, use or development of energy and mineral resources on Indian lands.

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WASHINGTON – Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn, speaking on behalf of the entire Department of the Interior, today issued the following statement on the passing of Forrest J. Gerard, a member of the Blackfeet Tribe in Montana and the first Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs who served from Oct. 13, 1977 to Jan. 19, 1980:

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