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Another land-into-trust fix reportedly being drafted in the Senate

Filed Under: Law | National | Politics | Trust
More on: 114th, appropriations, bia, california, carcieri, dianne feinstein, fy2017, house, land-into-trust, senate
     
   

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California) speaks at a press conference on Capitol Hill on October 21, 2015. Photo from Facebook

Another partial fix to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Carcieri v. Salazar appears to be emerging on Capitol Hill.

According to The New London Day, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California) has already drafted the language. Details weren't reported but it would merely ratify prior acquisitions rather than ensure that all tribes can follow the land-into-trust process going forward.

It's not clear from the story whether Feinstein intends to offer the fix as a stand-alone bill or as an amendment to existing legislation. But the paper said it will address Indian gaming, something the Democratic lawmaker has attempted in the past without much success due to opposition from tribes.

A partial fix that would ratify prior acquisitions up to February 24, 2009 -- the date of the Supreme Court's decision -- has already been added to the fiscal year 2017 Interior appropriations bill that's under consideration in the House.

The Supreme Court's decision states that the Bureau of Indian Affairs can only acquire land in trust for tribes that were "under federal jurisdiction" as of 1934. The ruling did not define that phrase so the BIA has developed tests to determine whether it can take action for a particular tribe.

Get the Story:
Preston selectmen approve legal costs to fight proposed Congressional bill on tribal land trusts (The New London Day 6/24)

Supreme Court Decision in Carcieri v. Salazar:
Syllabus | Opinion [Thomas] | Concurrence [Breyer] | Dissent [Stevens] | Concurrence/Dissent [Souter]

Supreme Court Documents:
Oral Argument Transcript | Briefs

Department of the Interior Solicitor Opinion:
M-37029: The Meaning of "Under Federal Jurisdiction" for Purposes of the Indian Reorganization Act (March 12, 2014)

Related Stories:
Poarch Band seeks a partial Carcieri fix for existing trust lands (6/20)
A 'partial' land-into-trust fix added to Interior appropriations bill (6/16)
Supreme Court nominee comes with some Indian law experience (03/16)
Updates from Day 2 of National Congress of American Indians winter session in D.C. (02/24)
Updates from National Congress of American Indians winter session in D.C. (02/23)
NCAI President Brian Cladoosby urges support for land-into-trust bill (01/14)
Navajo Nation Council opposes land-into-trust reform measure (12/11)
Senate committee approves bill to reform land-into-trust process (12/02)
Senate committee to take up land-into-trust reform legislation (12/01)
Rep. Mullin confirms divisions in Indian Country on Carcieri fix (11/24)
Patrick Sullivan: New Carcieri bill invites even more litigation (11/17)
Sen. Jon Tester: Congress must do right for Indian Country (11/13)
Congress yet to take action on Carcieri land-into-trust decision (10/28)
IBIA rejects challenge to Grand Traverse Band land-into-trust bid (10/01)
BIA treads new Carcieri ground in ruling for Massachusetts tribe (09/23)
Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe celebrates land-into-trust decision (09/18)
Sen. Moran introduces yet another version of land-into-trust fix (08/10)
USET welcomes new version of fix to land-into-trust decision (08/05)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee delays action on land-into-trust (07/30)
Sen. Barrasso introduces another version of land-into-trust fix (07/29)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee to take up land-into-trust fix (07/27)
House lawmakers introduce new version of land-into-trust fix (07/24)
White House threatens veto of funding bill for Indian programs (06/24)
NCAI responds to criticism from Rep. Young on land-into-trust (05/27)

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