Environment | National

Obama administration proposes the first tribal national park

The Oglala Sioux Tribe of South Dakota will operate the first tribal national park under a proposal released by the Obama administration today.

The 133,300-acre South Unit of the Badlands National Park is located entirely within the boundaries of the Pine Ridge Reservation. The land was taken from the tribe during World War II, forcing more than 800 people to leave in just a week.

The tribe and the National Park Service have jointly managed the unit for almost 40 years. If Congress adopts the administration's proposal, the tribe will be able to manage the land on its own.

“Our National Park System is one of America’s greatest story tellers,” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a press release. “As we seek to tell a more inclusive story of America, a tribal national park would help celebrate and honor the history and culture of the Oglala Sioux people. Working closely with the Tribe, Congress, and the public, the Park Service will work to develop a legislative proposal to make the South Unit a tribal national park.”

Get the Story:
Press Release: Salazar, Jarvis Announce Proposal to Establish Nation’s First Tribal National Park in Badlands (DOI 4/26)

Related Stories:
Editorial: Oglala Sioux Tribe can manage Badlands park unit (4/3)
NPS still working on management plan for Oglala Sioux Tribe (3/30)

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