Opinion | Federal Recognition

Editorial: BIA shouldn't be changing federal recognition process





Connecticut newspaper says the Bureau of Indian Affairs should stick to the status quo when it comes to federal recognition:
Proposed changes easing the requirements for Indian tribes to gain federal recognition would endanger the integrity of the process, while potentially generating many problems and plenty of litigation, particularly here in Connecticut.

While some tribes have faced frustration and failure in trying to gain federal acknowledgment and the benefits it provides, that does not justify this move to water down the rules.

The latest proposed rules appear to offer greater protections for Connecticut and local towns than an earlier draft, but with clever lawyering tribes previously denied federal recognition may make a case for a second try.

The new rules could also pave the way for individuals of questionable Native American heritage to gain the same recognition and benefits that other tribes only obtained by maintaining and documenting long-standing tribal identity. It would cheapen what they achieved.

Get the Story:
Editorial: New BIA rules could produce havoc (The New London Day 5/25)

Another Opinion:
Editorial: Tribal Tweak Could Spare State From More Casinos (The Hartford Courant 5/23)

Also Today:
Tribal recognition, casino talk, rekindles traffic concern (The Ridgefield Press 5/25)

Relevant Documents:
Proposed Rule | Press Release | Comparison Chart (comparing current rule to proposed rule) | Response to Comments on June 2013 Discussion Draft | Frequently Asked Questions

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Editorial: Some Indians become inconvenient for Connecticut (3/7)
Editorial: Don't let BIA water down federal recognition process (3/6)
Connecticut governor opposes BIA federal recognition reforms (2/27) Connecticut politicians want BIA to drop recognition reform (8/30)
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