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Environment
House Resources Committee to take up Makah bill


The House Resources Committee will take up a measure to express support for the Makah Nation's whale hunt at a markup session on Wednesday, October 19.

The title of the resolution is "Expressing the sense of the Congress upholding the Makah Tribe treaty rights." The bill has not been assigned a number and there is no information about it yet in Thomas [Link], the Congressional database.

The tribe signed a treaty with the United States in 1855. It is the only treaty to guarantee a right to hunt whale.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has since ruled that the Marine Mammals Protection Act limited the tribe's rights even though the law doesn't mention the tribe or the treaty. The tribe has now asked for a waiver under the act.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration just concluded three public meetings on the requested waiver. A fourth one is being held today in Silver Spring, Maryland. The tribe is encouraging Native Americans in the area to attend [PDF: Federal Register Notice].

The markup takes place at 10:00 a.m., 1324 Longworth House Office Building. A series of other bills will also be considered [Agenda].

Relevant Links:
Makah Nation - http://www.makah.com
Makah Request for a Waiver of the Moratorium on Taking Marine Mammals - http://www.nwr.noaa.gov/mmammals/graywhales/index.html

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