Opinion | Federal Recognition

Editorial: Monacan Nation moves closer to federal recognition

"The Monacan Indian Nation — based in Amherst County — has been down this path before. But the well worn road to federal recognition by the U.S. Congress has been filled with pot holes.

The Virginia tribe is hoping it will be different this time around.

While the Senate and House of Representatives was preoccupied last week with cobbling together legislation that would boost the nation’s debt ceiling, the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs approved the Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2011. The next step will be a vote by the full Senate, according to a spokeswoman for Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., who introduced the bill along with Sen. Mark Warner, Virginia’s other member of the Senate.

Sharon Bryant, the Monacan’s newly elected chief, greeted news of the committee approval philosophically. “We just go on faith every time that we submit that bill that maybe they’ll see the truth of who we are and what needs to be done for human justice.”"

Get the Story:
Editorial: Monacans' Long Struggle May Be Over (The Lynchburg News & Advance 8/3)

Committee Notice:
Business Meeting (July 28, 2011)

Related Stories:
Senate Indian Affairs Committee backs Virginia recognition bill (7/29)
Senate Indian Affairs Committee business meeting on Thursday (7/27)

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