The Bug-o-nay-ge-shig School Silver Eagle Drum Group is seen at a Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe flag installation ceremony in 2013. Photo: Jennifer Bevis / Itasca Area Initiative for Student Success

Witness list for House subcommittee hearing on Indian legislation

The House Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States is meeting on Wednesday afternoon for a legislative hearing.

Four bills are on the agenda for the hearing. They follow:
H.R.733, the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe Reservation Restoration Act. The bill returns nearly 12,000 acres to the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe. The tribe lost the land when the Bureau of Indian Affairs, between 1948 and 1959, sold allotments on the reservation in northern Minnesota despite lacking approval from all of the owners to do so.

H.R.1031, the Pala Band of Mission Indians Land Transfer Act. The bill requires the Bureau of Indian Affairs to acquire about 700 acres in southern California in trust for the Pala Band of Mission Indians. The tribe bought the land in San Diego County to protect Chokla, a sacred place also known as Gregory Mountain, from development.

H.R.1803, a bill to nullify the Supplemental Treaty Between the United States of America and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of Indians of Middle Oregon. The Warm Springs Tribes are asking Congress to repeal an agreement concluded on November 15, 1865. The agreement purports to limit the rights of the Warm Springs people but it has never been recognized or enforced as legitimate by either the tribe or the federal government. The Senate version of the bill, S.832, has already been advanced by the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.

H.R.2961, the Samish Indian Land Reaffirmation Act. The bill confirms that certain lands acquired for the Samish Nation are in trust. The tribe has repeatedly faced lengthy delays when seeking to restore its homelands through the land-into-trust process at the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The hearing takes place at 2pm Eastern in Room 1324 of the Longworth House Office Building. The witness list follows:
Panel I
Mr. Darryl LaCounte
Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior
H.R. 733, H.R. 1031, H.R. 1803 and H.R. 2961

Mr. Frank Beum
Acting Associate Deputy Chief, National Forest System, U.S. Department of Agriculture
H.R. 733

Panel II The Honorable Arthur LaRose
Secretary, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe
H.R. 733

The Honorable Robert H. Smith
Chairman, Pala Band of Mission Indians
H.R. 1031

Mr. Ron Suppah
Former Tribal Council Member, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs
H.R. 1803

The Honorable Tom Wooten
Chairman, Samish Indian Nation
H.R. 2961

The Honorable Brian Cladoosby (Minority Witness)
Chairman, Swinomish Indian Tribal Community
H.R. 2961

House Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States Notice
Legislative Hearing (June 5, 2019)

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