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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 recently.

8 Bills Move to Indian Country Bills Move on to Senate for Consideration

The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs passed on Wednesday the following eight bills that now will forwarded to the full Senate for consideration:

Following the business meeting, the Committee held a legislative hearing on S. 2088, the Wounded Knee Massacre Memorial and Sacred Site Act. Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Wizipan Garriott from the Department of the Interior, Chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Ryman Lebeau, and President of the Oglala Sioux Tribe Frank Star Comes Out testified.

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“These Committee-passed bills unlock opportunities for Tribal economic development, protect Native children and families, help Native communities deliver housing for their members, and work to fulfill the United States’ trust and treaty obligations, Sen. Briand Schatz (D-HI) said. “The Committee also considered a bill that would set forth a Tribal-led approach to honor the unarmed Lakota men, women, and children killed by the U.S. Army in the 1890 Wounded Knee massacre. I thank Vice Chairman Murkowski for her partnership in keeping up bipartisan momentum to move these bills out of Committee and on to the full Senate.”

The full video of the business meeting and legislative hearing is available here.

DHS Announces Funding Allocations for Fiscal Year 2023 Preparedness Grants 

On Friday, the Department of Homeland Security announced final allocations of $605 million in six Fiscal Year 2023 competitive preparedness grant programs. These allocations, together with the almost $1.4 billion in non-competitive grant funding announced earlier this year, total more than $2 billion in FY 2023 to help prepare our nation against threats and natural disasters.

The Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program provides $15 million to eligible tribal nations to implement preparedness initiatives to help strengthen the nation against risk associated with potential terrorist attacks and other hazards.

More information on preparedness grant programs is available at www.dhs.gov and www.fema.gov/grants.

Tribes Now Eligible to Participate in Local Outdoor Recreation Projects

The Department of the Interior announced on Friday the distribution of $295,582,830 from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) today to all 50 states, U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia. 

Recent changes to the LWCF Manual guide states to work more closely with Tribal Nations and clarify eligibility to ensure all federally recognized tribal nations can take part in and support future public outdoor recreation and conservation projects. The funds from this year’s distribution will be available until fiscal year 2025. 

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund helps further President Biden’s commitment to investing in America’s lands and waters, expanding access to the outdoors, and safeguarding the environment,” Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland said. “These grants, matched primarily by state and local governments, will inspire collaborative conservation and improves equitable access to the outdoors for all.” 

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