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President Obama signs Nevada Native Nations Land Act into law






Pyramid Lake on the Pyramid Lake Paiute Reservation in Nevada. Photo by Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe

Six tribes in Nevada will be regaining some of their ancestral territory under a bill signed into law on Friday by President Barack Obama.

More than 70,000 acres is going into trust as a result of H.R.2733, the Nevada Native Nations Lands Act. The six tribes plan to use the land to address housing, economic development and other needs in their communities.

"By carefully balancing the unique needs of our Nevada tribal nations with those of local ranchers, land owners, and businesses, this legislation will allow Nevadans to chart brighter futures for their communities, while preserving their cultural heritage and traditions," Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Nevada), the sponsor of the the bill, said in a press release after the measure cleared its final hurdle in the 114th Congress last week.

The biggest chunk of land is going to the Duckwater Shoshone Tribe. About 31,269 acres of Bureau of Land Management property will be placed in trust.

The Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone Tribe is reclaiming about 19,094 acres, also from the BLM. The tribe has been seeking the land for more than 40 years.

The new law also transfers 13,434 acre acres of BLM property to the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony. About 6,357 acres from the BLM is going to the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe. And the Summit Lake Paiute Tribe will see about 941 acres, also from the BLM.

Finally, the Shoshone Paiute Tribes is reclaiming about 82 acres from the U.S. Forest Service.

The bill passed the House in June. It cleared the Senate on September 29.

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