July 8, 2015

Senate Passes Bipartisan Tribal Self-Governance Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY) and Jon Tester (D-MT), Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, praised the Senate’s passage of S. 286, the “Department of the Interior Tribal Self-Governance Act of 2015.” The bill amends the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act and streamlines the self-governance process, making it easier and more efficient for tribes to carry out Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs programs available to them.
The bill, S. 286, was introduced by Senator Barrasso and has several bipartisan co-sponsors including SCIA Vice-Chairman Senator Jon Tester (D-MT). Similar bills have been introduced since the 108th Congress.
“Tribal self-governance has been one of my top priorities as Chairman this Congress. Self-governance empowers tribes in implementing important programs which in turn will positively affect their communities,” said Chairman Barrasso. “Tribes have dealt with Washington’s red-tape for far too long. This bill will improve their ability to tailor Federal Indian programs to the specific needs of their communities.”
“It is critically important to improve self-governance and give tribes the tools they need to succeed,” Vice-Chairman Tester said.  “Our bipartisan bill streamlines decision making, eliminates unnecessary hurdles, and provides more certainty for tribes as they build their budgets and provide critical services.”