Vincent Armenta: Chumash land-into-trust boosts community

"Our tribal government prefers to rely on facts, not scare tactics, in discussions about our efforts to add 1,400 acres of land to our reservation.

Our tribe in 2010 purchased 1,400 acres of our ancestral territory, located about two miles east of our reservation. The property, known as Camp 4, eventually will have about 140 homes.

We want to place the property into federal trust so tribal families can live together in a tribal community under the stewardship of our government. Trust status will help ensure that this land never again is taken away from our tribe.

Additionally, doing so returns our lost land to the local control of the local tribal government, whose ancestors were stewards of the land long before the county or any nearby city existed.

Our tribe hopes to have Congress approve this through fee-to-trust legislation. We will agree to a no-gaming provision on this land in any federal bill, a fact that a few hostile-but-vocal opponents refuse to recognize."

Get the Story:
Vincent Armenta: Housing would help cities, entire county (The Solvang Valley News 6/7)

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