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The Rise of Tribes and the Fall of Federal Indian Law
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Indian provisions added to Senate jobs legislation
Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) on Tuesday announced that provisions to increase funding for investment in Indian Country have been added to a jobs bill being considered by the U.S. Senate.

The provisions will expand tax exempt bonding authority for tribes, enabling tribes to be treated the same as states. Johnson said the measure will provide economic growth in Indian Country.

"State and local governments have been doing this for years, and now tribes will also be able to use this tax benefit to the same extent as other governments to bring capital investment to Indian Country," he said yesterday. "This is about recognizing the rights of sovereign nations."

While tribes have some limited authority to issue tax-exempt bonds, Johnson said tribes are currently constrained by Internal Revenue Service (IRS) rules favoring state and local governments

The tax exempt bonding authority was originally contained in S.1542, the Tribal Economic Enhancement Act of 2003. Johnson introduced the measure last July.

The provisions have since been added to the Jumpstart Our Business Strength (JOBS) bill, S. 1637, which is designed to create jobs and respond to the increased globalization of manufacturing and other industries.

Relevant Links:
Sen. Tim Johnson - http://johnson.senate.gov

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