Home > News > More Headlines > Bush initiative to be scrutinized by Congress
Printer friendly version
Bush initiative to be scrutinized by Congress
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 2003

Congressional appropriators plan to review a Bush administration proposal to eliminate dozens of Indian Health Service (IHS) jobs and relocate more than 200 employees.

The omnibus appropriations act approved last week includes language that requires Congressional approval before the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) implements several management initiatives. The provision was carried over from the Senate's version of the massive funding bill.

The bill doesn't restrict money for IHS, which is at a record $2.9 billion. But it impacts whether or not future spending will be affected by what is known as the "One-HHS" proposal.

First outlined in the 2003 budget, the initiative targets four areas for consolidation: public and legislative affairs; information technology; facilities construction; and human resources (HR), which includes the Equal Opportunity Office. Some are slated to take place this year while the two that most impact Indian Country -- facilities and HR -- are scheduled for fiscal year 2004.

Dr. Charles Grim, the interim IHS director, said the effort will result in the elimination of about 36 human resource positions at the agency. The goal is to have one HR employee for every 82 employees.

"We have one of the better looking ratios in the department," he said in an interview. With about 15,000 employees, IHS is the second largest division at HHS.

No final decisions have been made regarding the affected employees, whom Grim said will be offered other jobs at the department. The 218 employees whose positions won't be cut are to be transferred to one office in suburban Washington, D.C., removing them from locations closest to the people they serve in Indian Country.

Indian health and tribal leaders have expressed concerns about the consolidation. Funding for new IHS clinics and hospitals, which has been reduced in the past two years, will come from the same pot as other HHS projects, leading to fears that Indian Country will not be a priority. They also say the IHS can't afford to lose any employees.

"Sixty percent [of operations] have already been downsized," said one. "To move it to the department doesn't bode well."

THe IHS is headquartered in Rockville, Maryland. But Grim said the HR staff will probably be relocated in Baltimore. Currently, the employees work in the field.

About 1.6 million American Indians and Alaska Natives are eligible for IHS services, according to agency figures.

Relevant Links:
Indian Health Service - http://www.ihs.gov
Department of Health and Human Services - http://www.hhs.gov

Related Stories:
Grim expects nomination as head of IHS (2/11)
IHS positions being eliminated (2/7)
'Austere' health care budget cited (2/5)
Thompson releases new IHS budget (2/4)
Indian Country receives diabetes grants (12/11)
Court rebuffs tribes on contract funding dispute (11/27)
Congress approves $750M for Indian diabetes (11/21)
Northern Plains tribes see high infant death rate (10/30)
Navajo Nation challenges contract policy (10/04)
Reports address long-term elder care (08/20)
Bush appoints interim director of IHS (08/05)
Bush delaying pick for IHS post (7/23)
Report stresses importance of health insurance (5/22)
Poor Indian health blamed on federal failures (3/21)
IHS pressed to include tribes in reform efforts (02/28)
IHS budget cuts construction funds (2/12)

Copyright © Indianz.Com

Stay Connected

On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud

More Headlines

Justice Antonin Scalia dies with Indian law cases on the docket (2/13)
Lakota Country Times: Native youth work to bring relatives home (2/12)
Native Sun News: Young runners invited to compete in Australia (2/12)
Mark Trahant: Native voters are true outsiders in 2016 elections (2/12)
Lorraine Loomis: Help treaty tribes with salmon recovery efforts (2/12)
Vincent Schilling: I'm not ashamed to be a sexual assault victim (2/12)
Tara Houska: Stop stealing cultural traditions from Native people (2/12)
Burns Paiute Tribe to help assess damage from armed takeover (2/12)
Obama weighs tribal request for Bears Ears National Monument (2/12)
Study looks at rates of binge drinking among Native Americans (2/12)
President of Navajo Nation to sign bill for veterans department (2/12)
Winnebago Tribe faces opposition to Nebraska gaming initiative (2/12)
Kialegee Tribal Town stays quiet as failed casino sits unfinished (2/12)
Keweenaw Bay Indian Community eyes off-reservation casino (2/12)
Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation sees gaming revenue gains (2/12)
Lakota Country Times: Missing Oglala Sioux woman found dead (2/11)
Doug George-Kanentiio: Town repays Oneida Nation with racism (2/11)
Brandon Ecoffey: Treaties guaranteed health care for our people (2/11)
Vincent Armenta: Chumash Tribe battles opponents at every turn (2/11)
Michael Marchand: Arrow Lakes people still fighting for our rights (2/11)
Steven Newcomb: Federal Indian law based on invented realities (2/11)
Native basketball tournament bars player who lacks Indian blood (2/11)
Armed occupation of wildlife refuge in Oregon ends with arrests (2/11)
Native activists ask Obama to help with liquor sales in Whiteclay (2/11)
South Dakota lawmakers kill bill to support return of land to tribes (2/11)
Miami Nation agrees to forfeit $48M from online lending business (2/11)
Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation creates $1.2M endowment at ASU (2/11)
Colville Tribes issue citation for death of rare owl on reservation (2/11)
Fort Independence Indian Community cheated by former partner (2/11)
Paskenta Band donates $125K to buy new vehicle for firefighters (2/11)
Man pleads guilty for dealing meth on Mescalero Apache Nation (2/11)
Public high school gives up racist mascot in response to new law (2/11)
Morongo Band and San Manuel Band question fantasy sports bill (2/11)
Former Sac and Fox Nation casino employee charged with theft (2/11)
Jena Band of Choctaw Indians celebrates 3rd birthday of casino (2/11)
Schaghticoke Tribal Nation again told it can't accept casino bids (2/11)
Editorial: Measure stops Lytton Band from pursuing new casinos (2/11)
Obama seeks another increase for Indian Health Service budget (2/10)
Six of 12 Indian Health Service area directors in 'acting' capacity (2/10)
Lakota Country Times: Indian lawmakers oppose drug testing bill (2/10)
Vince Two Eagles: The rez of the story about treaty-making in US (2/10)
Kristi Noem: Indian Health Service remains in state of emergency (2/10)
Chase Iron Eyes: Real sovereigns don't disenroll their own people (2/10)
Gyasi Ross: African and Native Americans fought for their survival (2/10)
Albert Bender: Tribes should reclaim land from unratified treaties (2/10)
John Lavelle: Supreme Court weighs key tribal sovereignty issue (2/10)
Women take top three leadership positions at Menominee Nation (2/10)
more headlines...

Advertisement

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.