Law | Politics | Trust

Senate Indian Affairs Committee addresses land-into-trust fix

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee held a hearing on Thursday to discuss the effects of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Carcieri v. Salazar.

The committee already passed S.676, a bill that contains the fix, and it has included the fix in S.703, the HEARTH Act. But the fix hasn't moved in the Senate or the House despite support from the Obama administration.

“This is the top priority here that we're talking about,” Assistant Secretary Larry Echo Hawk, the head of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, told the committee.

In February 2009, the court ruled that the land-into-trust provisions of the Indian Reorganization Act only apply to tribes that were "under federal jurisdiction" as of 1934. The decision has placed doubts on housing, economic development and other projects for recently recognized tribes.

Witnesses said lenders are walking away from Indian Country due to uncertainty.

Get the Story:
Bill to reverse ‘Carcieri’ ruling affecting Indian tribes gets Senate hearing (The Providence Journal 10/14)
Reversing trust land decision is Obama administration's top priority for Indian Country (The Oklahoman 10/14)
Cole: Supreme Court ruling on tribal trust land needs remedy (The Tulsa World 10/14>
Most land put in trust for tribes' quality of life (AP 10/13)
Native American official says Supreme Court ruling is hurting Indian employment (Cronkite News Service 10/13)

Committee Notice:
OVERSIGHT HEARING on the Carcieri Crisis: The Ripple Effect on Jobs, Economic Development and Public Safety in Indian Country (October 13, 2011)

Supreme Court Decision:
Syllabus | Opinion [Thomas] | Concurrence [Breyer] | Dissent [Stevens] | Concurrence/Dissent [Souter]

Related Stories:
Audio: SCIA hearing on crisis created by land-into-trust ruling (10/13)
Witness list for SCIA hearing on fix for land-into-trust 'crisis' (10/11)
Sen. Reed doesn't want land-into-trust fix in appropriations bill (10/5)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee adds land-into-trust fix to bill (7/29)
Cedric Cromwell: Land-into-trust ruling a threat to sovereignty (7/26)
Audio from House subcommittee hearing on land-into-trust fix (7/12)
Witness List: House subcommittee hearing on land-into-trust (7/11)
Subcommittee to hold hearing on land-into-trust fix on July 12 (7/5)
Tribes press for fix to land-into-trust ruling at nation's capitol (06/27)
Witness List: Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearing on IRA (6/21)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearing on 75 years of IRA (6/13)
Tribes to rally in Washington for fix to land-into-trust ruling (6/7)
Rhode Island governor opposes fix to land-into-trust decision (4/11)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee approves land-into-trust fix (4/8)
Rep. Cole introduces fix to Supreme Court land-into-trust ruling (4/4)
Echo Hawk 'strongly supports' fix to land-into-trust decision (3/31)
Bills introduced to fix Supreme Court land-into-trust decision (3/31)
White House aide vows support for fix to land-into-trust decision (3/1)

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