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WASHINGTON — In addition to articles already covered by Native News Online, here is a roundup of other news released from Washington, D.C. that impacts Indian Country this past week..

Strides Made Under Biden-Harris Administration

Many bills passed under the current administration have allowed for great strides to be made in Indian Country. Millions of dollars have been invested into Tribal development of broadband.

The Treasury Department reflected back on 2022:

  • The Treasury has dispersed over $9 billion through the Homeowner Assistance Fund to state, territorial and tribal governments. 
  • Secretary Yellen traveled to the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, this is the first time a U.S. Treasury Secretary visited a Tribal nation. It was here where she heard the challenges tribal citizens face and how they can work together to solve them. 
  • $20 billion in State and Local Fiscal funds allocated to Tribal government through the American Rescue Plan. 
Navajo Nation President Nez Respoinds to Omnibus Spending Bill Passed by Congress. 

The omnibus bill  by President Joe Biden on Dec. 23, 2022 includes more than $5 billion in advance funding for Indian Health Services for Fiscal year 2024, in addition to the $7 billion for 2023. 

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President Nez and the Navajo Nation Washington Office worked with the White House, members of Congress, IHS Director Roselyn Tso, and national health organizations to make this possible. 

This past week, President Nez commented on the bill's passage.

“This is a significant step toward providing fiscal certainty for the Indian health care system and fulfilling the United States’ trust responsibility and treaty promises to the First People of this country. Our Navajo leaders long ago had the foresight and wisdom to prioritize health care as a main component in the Navajo Treaty of 1868 and it’s our responsibility to hold the federal government accountable. We appreciate the combined advocacy of tribal nations, health groups, and our congressional delegation to secure advance appropriations,” President Nez said. 

Tribal Listening Session on HHS Initiatives is Scheduled

Tribal leaders, public health officials, and Indian Country professionals are invited to a listening session to discuss the Health and Human Services initiative to strengthen primary health care in Indian Country. 

It is to take place Tuesday, January 31, 2023 at 1:00 p.m. EST. The registration link can be found here

Neely Bardwell (descendant of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians), a Michigan State University student who is a staff reporter for Native News Online, contributed to these briefs.

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