S.Res.702, the National Native American Heritage Month resolution, is no longer on the agenda for the business meeting.
With the clock winding down on the 115th Congress, the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs will be advancing another slate of tribal bills this week. Three resolutions and three bills are on the agenda for a business meeting on Wednesday. They follow:
• S.Res.444, a resolution recognizing the heritage, culture, and contributions of American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian women in the United States. • S.Res.596, a resolution recognizing the 29th anniversary of the Tribal Canoe Journey of the Tribal Nations of the Pacific Northwest and congratulating the Puyallup Tribe for hosting 2018 Power Paddle to Puyallup. •S.Res.444, S.Res.596 and S.Res.702 are resolutions that are largely symbolic in nature. If any are eventually adopted by the full Senate, no further action is needed. S.2788, H.R.2606 and H.R.4032 are more substantive in nature. All three were the subject of a hearing on November 14 during which the Trump administration said it supported all three measures. What's Left? Bills awaiting action in House  | Bills awaiting action in Senate  H.R.2606 and H.R.4032 already won passage in the House so action at the business meeting on Wednesday marks a major step forward for both bills. If the full Senate takes action before the end of the 115th Congress, both could be signed into law by President Donald Trump. So far in the Trump era, Indian Country's legislative agenda has fallen behind. Since the start of the 115th session in January 2017, Congress has sent less than 10 tribal bills to the president.
S.Res.702, a resolution recognizing National Native American Heritage Month and celebrating the heritages and cultures of Native Americans and the contributions of Native Americans to the United States.• S.2788, a bill to repeal state jurisdiction on the Spirit Lake Nation in North Dakota. The reservation currently falls under a termination-era law that subjects American Indians to prosecution by the state. The federal government will still have jurisdiction if the bill were to become law. • H.R.2606, the Stigler Act Amendments of 2018. The bill ensures that landowners who are citizens of the Cherokee Nation, the Chickasaw Nation, the Choctaw Nation, the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and the Seminole Nation can pass on their trust lands and allotted lands without worrying about blood quantum. Currently, such lands lose their protected status if the owner's blood quantum falls below one-half, a requirement that's not imposed on any other landowners in Indian Country. The House passed the bill on September 12. • H.R.4032, the Gila River Indian Community Federal Rights-of-Way, Easements and Boundary Clarification Act. The bill resolves a number of rights-of-way, easement and boundary issues for the Gila River Indian Community in Arizona. The House passed the bill on July 17.
The Barack Obama years were much more productive. By the end of the 114th Congress, lawmakers sent 22 bills the former Democratic president, according to the senior-most Republican aide on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. The 115th Congress is expected to conclude sometime in December. Any bills that do not pass both chambers must be reintroduced in the next session. The 116th Congress convenes on January 3, 2019. The business meeting takes place at 2:30pm in Room 628 of the Senate Dirksen Office Building.
Awaiting action in HouseThe following is a non-exhaustive list of the Indian Country bills that have already passed the Senate and await further action in the House. S.245, the Indian Tribal Energy Development and Self-Determination Act Amendments. S.254, the Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act. S.269, a bill to provide for the conveyance of certain property to the Tanana Tribal Council located in Tanana, Alaska, and to the Bristol Bay Areal Health Corporation located in Dillingham, Alaska, S.302, the John Smith Act, or the Tribal Infrastructure and Roads Enhancement and Safety Act (TIRES Act). S.343, the Repealing Existing Substandard Provisions Encouraging Conciliation with Tribes Act, also known as the RESPECT Act. S.607, the Native American Business Incubators Program Act. S.669, the Columbia River In-Lieu and Treaty Fishing Access Sites Improvement Act. S.825, the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium Land Transfer Act S.943, the Johnson-O’Malley Supplemental Indian Education Program Modernization Act. S.995, the Spokane Tribe of Indians of the Spokane Reservation Equitable Compensation Act. S.1116, the Indian Community Economic Enhancement Act. S.1223, the Klamath Tribe Judgment Fund Repeal Act. S.1333, the Tribal HUD-VASH Act. S.2515, the Practical Reforms and Other Goals To Reinforce the Effectiveness of Self-Governance and Self-Determination for Indian Tribes Act, otherwise known as the PROGRESS for Indian Tribes Act.
Awaiting action in SenateThe following is a non-exhaustive list of the Indian Country bills that have already passed the House and await further action in the Senate. H.R.146, the Eastern Band Cherokee Historic Lands Reacquisition Act. H.R.597, the Lytton Rancheria Homelands Act. H.R.1074, a bill to address criminal jurisdiction issues on the settlement of the Meskwaki Tribe in Iowa. H.R.1491, the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Land Affirmation Act. H.R.1532, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Land Reaffirmation Act. H.R.2606, the Stigler Act Amendments. H.R.4032, the Gila River Indian Community Federal Rights-of-Way, Easements and Boundary Clarification Act. H.R.3764, the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians Restoration Act. H.R.5317, the Repeal of Prohibition on Certain Alcohol Manufacturing on Indian Lands Act.
Senate Committee on Indian AffairsBusiness Meeting To Consider S.RES 444, S.RES 596, S.RES 702, S. 2788, H.R. 2606 & H.R 4032 (November 26, 2018)
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