indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439   fax: 202 318 2182
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines

printer friendly version
Budget resolution barely clears House vote
Friday, March 26, 2004

The House narrowly approved a $2.4 trillion budget resolution on Thursday that an Arizona Congressman says shortchanges Indian Country.

Rep. Rick Renzi (R-Ariz.) was one of 10 Republicans who joined Democrats in rejecting the measure but it passed by a vote of 215 to 212. The first-term Congressman said the budget does not provide adequate funds for the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Indian Health Service and veterans' care.

"My district is home to the largest concentration of Native Americans in the nation, I could not bring myself to vote for a budget that did not fully address their uniquely severe situation," Renzi said.

Renzi represents a large part of the Navajo Nation and the White Mountain Apache and San Carlos reservations. In December, he visited a BIA school on the Navajo Nation that is in line for replacement construction funds.

"Students enrolled in BIA schools deserve to learn in better classrooms at modern facilities. We need to give these students the tools and the technical training to compete and succeed within today's modern workforce," Renzi said. "BIA education funding in the current budget needs to be raised."

The resolution approved yesterday sets the federal government's spending levels for the coming fiscal year and the four years following. It closely follows the request President Bush submitted in February.

Under the proposal, the BIA takes a 2.5 percent cut in fiscal year 2005. Education programs will see an overall reduction of $79 million, $65 million of which impacts the account used to repair and replace ailing Indian schools.

In contrast, the IHS is seeing an overall increase of 1.6 percent, although one item -- construction of new hospitals, clinics and other facilities -- will be reduced by $52 million due to completion of certain projects. Renzi said this cut jeopardizes American Indians and Alaska Natives.

"With tribal health care costs increasing at rates faster than that of inflation, under-funding future construction of IHS hospitals reduces the ability for Native Americans to receive urgent-care and emergency medical services," he said.

Democrats in the House offered three alternatives to the budget resolution that would revoke some of Bush's tax cuts and use the money to reduce the federal deficit and increase spending for domestic programs, including health and education. These were defeated along with a proposal by some Republicans to rein in spending.

In recent weeks, tribal leaders have blasted the Bush administration's spending plans as reckless. Officials plan to slash the BIA budget by six percent over the next two years, the largest since the Reagan era.

"I don't know what it will take to get through to this administration," said Joe Shirley Jr., president of the Navajo Nation, in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Shirley and nearly two dozen tribal leaders have written a letter to President Bush, seeking face-to-face consultation on the upcoming budgets.

"There's a war going on in the United States," Shirley added. "Our war is against poverty, against greed, against impoverishment, against unemployment."

The Senate earlier this month passed a $2.4 trillion budget resolution after Republicans rejected a $3.44 billion boost to the IHS. The chamber approved a $292 million increase instead.

The Senate resolution differs from the House one in a key respect. Any new tax cuts in the next five years must be approved by at least 60 out of 100 senators. House Republicans oppose this provision.

Fiscal year 2005 begins October 1. Funding for the BIA and IHS will be contained in the Interior Appropriations bill. Members of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee who also site on the Appropriations Committee say they will work to increase spending for Indian programs.

"We have a lot to say about what is increased and what is decreased," d Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-Colo.) said last month.

Get the Resolution:
Congressional Budget for the U.S. Government for FY 2005
(H. Con. Res. 393)

Roll Call:
On Agreeing to the Resolution (March 25, 2004)

Relevant Documents:
DOI Budget Memo (March 12, 2004) | Tribal Leaders Letter to Bush (March 23, 2004)

Relevant Links:
Rep. Rick Renzi - http://www.house.gov/renzi

Related Stories:
Bush drops budget 'bombshell' on Indian Country (3/24)
BIA education programs taking $79 million hit (3/23)
Indian educators meet for legislative summit (3/22)
Proposed boost in IHS budget rejected by Senate (03/12)
Cuts run deep for tribal programs at BIA (03/09)
Senate panel shares criticism of Bush budget (02/12)
Tribal leaders pressing Congress on funding (02/11)
Bush seeks $3 billion for Indian Health Service (02/03)
Daschle criticizes Bush on Indian health funds (02/03)
Daschle asks Bush to increase funding for IHS (12/18)
Democrats lay out plan for minority and Indian health (10/22)
Daschle: Improve Health Care in Indian Country (10/15)
Senate votes down health and trust measures (09/24)
Senate rejects one IHS funding measure, passes another (03/26)
Tribes told to explore health funding options (02/05)
Thompson releases new IHS budget (2/4)
Indian Country receives diabetes grants (12/11)
Congress approves $750M for Indian diabetes (11/21)

Copyright 2000-2004 Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: IHS hospital at Pine Ridge undergoes review (7/25)
Ivan Star Comes Out: Group disturbs tranquility at Bear Butte (7/25)
Indian Health Service discloses privacy breach of patient data (7/25)
BIA extends comment period on federal recognition regulation (7/25)
Navajo Nation president calling for FBI probe of brutal murders (7/25)
Jennie Stockle: Justice for victims of Cedarville mass shooting (7/25)
John Christian Hopkins: Waiting for Belgian waffles at Denny's (7/25)
Steven Pevar: Indian chldren are being taken from their homes (7/25)
IHS pays $53M to settle another contract support cost dispute (7/25)
Shinnecock Nation asserts control over tobacco amid pressure (7/25)
Four sentenced for stealing HHS funds from Oglala Sioux Tribe (7/25)
Unsettled: BIA questions Passamaquoddy forest management (7/25)
ASU News: First graduates of Indian studies master's program (7/25)
Blog: Tanka Fund aims to grow Indian Country's bison economy (7/25)
Opinion: A troubling relationship with Native peoples in Canada (7/25)
Opinion: Auction of tribal property in France sets bad precedent (7/25)
Puyallup Tribe cancels upcoming Ted Nugent concerts at casino (7/25)
Mayor gives conflicting view on Tohono O'odham Nation casino (7/25)
Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe plans to start work at gaming site (7/25)
Pojoaque Pueblo defends provisions in proposed gaming deal (7/25)
Iipay Nation puts Internet gaming servers on Mohawk reserve (7/25)
Native Sun News: Cobell beneficiaries still waiting on payment (7/24)
Navajo Nation president to discuss brutal murders with mayor (7/24)
NCAI President Cladoosby offers cedar hat to BIA's Washburn (7/24)
Woman waiting in line at SCIA hearing reportedly had bedbugs (7/24)
S.E. Ruckman: Tribal members share frustrations on IHS care (7/24)
Mark Rogers: System exploits misery of our nation's veterans (7/24)
Fort Belknap Tribes depend on revenue from Internet lending (7/24)
Oglala Sioux Tribe still working on plan for legal alcohol sales (7/24)
Two Native girls charged with assault for hockey game brawl (7/24)
Chickasaw Nation welcomes public to new community center (7/24)
Oregon tribe plans major development at historic village site (7/24)
Unsettled Ch. 26: Passamaquoddy dealings cloaked in secrecy (7/24)
KCAW: BLM supports Alaska Native corporation in land dispute (7/24)
Mixed martial arts fighter from Lumbee Tribe proud of heritage (7/24)
Granddaughter of former team owner condemns racist mascot (7/24)
Opinion: Chief Black Hawk was notorious leader of Ute people (7/24)
Remote tribes facing threats from drug trafficking and logging (7/24)
BIA indicates Tohono O'odham Nation can use land for gaming (7/24)
Pojoaque Pueblo wants to take state out of casino operations (7/24)
Iipay Nation started planning Internet poker games last year (7/24)
Fighter seriously injured at Trinidad Rancheria's casino event (7/24)
St. Regis Mohawk Tribe concerned about potential gaming site (7/24)
Native Sun News: Great Plains tribes call for full contract funds (7/23)
Native Sun News: Candidate wants Obama to meet with tribes (7/23)
Audio: Senate Committee on Indian Affairs hearing on gaming (7/23)
President Obama nominates Jonodev Chaudhuri to lead NIGC (7/23)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.