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Great Plains Tribal Chairman’s Association. Tribal Interior Budget Conference Fiscal Year 2014 Washington, D.C. March 27-28, 2012. FY 2014 Tribal Budget Interior Conference. Tribal Representatives Tex Hall, Chairman, Three Affiliated Tribes of North Dakota

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tribal interior budget conference fiscal year 2014 washington d c march 27 28 2012

Great Plains Tribal Chairman’s Association

Tribal Interior Budget Conference Fiscal Year 2014

Washington, D.C.

March 27-28, 2012

fy 2014 tribal budget interior conference
FY 2014 Tribal Budget Interior Conference

Tribal Representatives

Tex Hall, Chairman, Three Affiliated Tribes of North Dakota

Rodney Bordeaux, President, Rosebud Sioux Tribe of South Dakota

Robert Shepherd, Chairman Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate’

Regional Office Representatives

Bruce W. Maytubby, Sr., Acting Regional Director

Alice Harwood, Deputy Regional Director-Indian Services

Lisa Davis, Regional Budget Officer

strengthening tribal nations initiative
Strengthening Tribal Nations Initiative

Treaties define our unique relationship with the Federal Government and predate the Constitution of the US. Treaties are recognized under the United States Constitution, Article VI; and shall be the Supreme Law of the land.

All interests of the Great Plains Region should be protected; the best insurance for the Great Plain Region long term survival is to have full funding to maintain healthy, productive, safe, knowledgeable environments so the tribal citizens of the Great Plains Region can be full partners in the American Economy.

Therefore, funding appropriated and distributed for services to Tribes and their members is based on the fact the United States Government has a fiduciary trust responsibility under the treaties to protect tribal/Indian property, land, rights and resources. Today’s Government funding cynically masks the fact that the United States is just providing uncertain erratic handouts; these funds should not be viewed as entitlements or discretionary; they should be protected and guaranteed quid pro quo treaty benefits.

tribal position on 2014 budget process
Tribal Position on 2014 Budget Process

The Great Plains treaty tribes are opposed to ranking and prioritizing programs in Indian Country. All programs are basic life critical necessities that historically have never been 100% funded. All TPA programs are a priority and essential to the overall livelihood of the tribal members and the operation of the Great Plains tribal governments. However, as the budget process requires a program prioritization this requirement has been met.

It is indicative that the 2012 and proposed 2013 budget cuts will impact future budgets. As it stands, the President’s commitment to Indian Country and the Bureau’s Mission Statement are not supported in any previous budgets and to support further budget cuts in the proposed 2013 budget is sending the wrong message to Indian Country.

BIA programs are being decreased or eliminated based on the assumption that other federal departments or agencies are fulfilling those roles or responsibilities to tribes and their membership. Tribal access to those funds becomes limited because of the lack of communication from other federal and/or state agencies. The Great Plains tribes have consistently objected to the reorganizing of line authority and funding away from BIA.

great plains priorities
Great Plains Priorities
  • Tribal Priority Allocations
    • Housing
    • Trust and Natural Resources
    • Economic Development
    • Contract Support
    • Welfare Assistance
  • Office of Justice Services
    • Law Enforcement
    • Tribal Courts
    • Corrections (including Facilities O&M)
  • Education
    • Scholarships
    • JOM
    • Adult Education
    • Other Education priorities include: Early Childhood Education (FACE/Baby FACE), Full Funding for School Facilities and Operations; Preservation-Retention of Tribal Culture through support of Tribal Specific Standards, Assessments and Education Departments.
  • Transportation
    • Road Maintenance
    • Indian Reservation Roads Program
tribal priority programs
Tribal Priority Programs
  • Tribal Priority Allocations (TPA) funding, base and non-base, agency or tribal, must be excluded from all reductions or any proposed freezes. The Fiscal Year 2012 Administrative Savings reduction applied to Agency TPA programs unfairly impacts Direct Service, Large Land Based Tribes to a greater extent than Self-Governance tribes.
  • Office of Justice Services programs need to be funded at an adequate funding level for all tribal and agency operated programs (law enforcement, tribal court, corrections) to fully implement and comply with the 2009 Tribal Law and Order Act.
  • Indian Education provides funding to assist BIA funded schools to increase the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), Scholarships, Adult Education and Johnson O’Malley.
  • Transportation funding is crucial in order for tribes and agencies to provide safe roads and bridges for all who utilize them. Funding is not at a level to support the federal responsibility in this Region.

Home Improvement Program

  • Increase the Federal Income Poverty guideline eligibility from 125% to 225%.
  • Rating for eligibility criteria should be revised to address housing needs.
  • The 2012 need for the Large Land Base Great Plains is $228.5 million vs the current minimal amount of $25 million Bureau wide.

Other Issues:

-Many houses are dilapidated and have black mold creating health issues.

-The Tribal leadership has stated that the reservations have turned into “trailer house grave yards”.

-The waiting list at the Indian Housing Authorities are long, with 5 plus years and no guarantee of housing placement.

-The housing need is great, but it is impossible to capture an accurate count as many will not come forward to be counted. For example, many are homeless or are in fear of being evicted from their home due to the fact that “unauthorized” family members are residing with them in homes governed by stringent federal guidelines.

trust and natural resources
Trust and Natural Resources

The protection of land and natural resources is critical to maintaining the Great Plains tribal land base. The Region has one of the largest land bases in Indian Country and the most fractionated interests. Limited funding resources have not allowed the BIA to fulfill it’s trust obligation in protecting and enhancing these resources for the 1.7 million land owner and tribal interests.

  • Great Plains Region has the responsibility for managing and protecting 6.1 million acres of tribal and allotted lands for approximately 90,000 individual land owners.
  • Annual value of grazing to the Indian landowners and Tribes is approximately $18 million and approximately $14 million for farm pasture and farm leases.
trust and natural resources cont
Trust and Natural Resources cont….
  • 25 CFR 166 requires the development of Reservation specific Agricultural Resource Management Plans (ARMP) and Range Unit specific Conservation plans to protect the trust resources of the Indian landowner.
  • Lease Compliance and Unresolved Rights funding must be restored. These activities continue to operate but at the expense of other TPA programs.
  • Create a permanent funding source for Tribal Historic Preservation Offices appropriated through the Department of Interior as per the DOI Strategic Plan for 2011-2016.
economic development
Economic Development
  • The 2010 National Census data revealed the following South Dakota counties as the 4 of the 10 poorest in the nation: Ziebach (Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe),Todd (Rosebud Sioux Tribe), Shannon (Oglala Sioux Tribe) and Corson (Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.) It is an epidemic that needs Congressional attention to aide the tribes in moving towards reducing the poverty levels that plague the Great Plains Region.
  • The average unemployment rate in the Great Plains Region is 77%. Economic Development is imperative to improving the quality of life for tribal members through job creation.
economic development cont
Economic Development cont…..
  • Tribes within the Great Plains Region lack the economic resources and infrastructure to jump start their economies and to fully implement the Department’s initiatives for alternative and/or renewable energy projects.
  • Reverse the consolidation of the functions and authorities of the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development Office back to the BIA Regional Office and Agency level to reverse the reduction of service and regular tribal consultation inherent in the new stove piping of this program.
  • Allow tribal input on revising regulations and provide experts to fit tribal needs. The tribes must have the opportunity for participation in proposed changes and evaluations affecting the Indian Financing Act or other economic development programs.
  • The Great Plains Tribes are opposed to the proposed $2.1 million reduction to the Guaranteed Loan Program for FY 2013.
  • Grants/Funding should be appropriated for Great Plains Tribes to develop, train and implement Uniform Commercial Codes for economic development (employment opportunities).
direct support and contract support costs
Direct Support and Contract Support Costs
  • The fundamental obstacle to tribal P.L. 93-638 contracting has historically been the lack of full funding for direct support and contract support costs. Full contract support funding is critical to the tribes abilities to implement and maintain their self determination status.
  • The Great Plains Tribes support the increased funding for direct support and contract support costs in 2012 and proposed 2013 budgets.
welfare assistance
Welfare Assistance

This funding provides financial assistance for American Indians and Alaska Natives who do not meet eligibility criteria for other State or County services. Emergency assistance within this category is often times not provided by other Federal sources such as FEMA or the American Red Cross for natural disasters or other emergency situations.

General Assistance provides monetary grants to eligible clients. Of the 167,000 service population, eligible clients are provided an average sole source income of $218 per month.

Child Assistance provides for the care of abandoned or neglected children placed in foster homes, private or group or residential homes designed to provide special care. Approximately 2,134 children have been placed in special care.

The Indigent Burial Program provides burial grants to eligible members. burial. The average cost of a funeral nationally is $7,200. A total of $1,076,143 was funded for 2011 for Great Plains.

Emergency Assistance is provided directly to individuals who suffered extensive loss to homes and personal property due to fire, flood or other calamities and is used for essential needs of food, shelter and utilities. In 2011, $53,057 was expended to provide assistance to 198 victims at an average of $268.

office of justice services
Office of Justice Services
  • The Great Plains Tribes continue to encounter great difficulties with Law Enforcement and Detention services due to the reorganization and separation of authority from the Agency/Regional structure of the past with little to no Tribal consultation. It is vital to the Great Plains Region, with the great distances and lack of adequate patrol officers, that authority and funding be restored back to the Regional and Agency offices. This will positively impact Tribes in our Region in their decision making and in their government-to-government relationships.
    • Tribal Law and Order Act is an unfunded mandate and places a great burden on Tribes when attempting to implement the requirements of this Act.
    • Lack of housing for current patrol and detention staff and no consideration of housing needs when new facilities are constructed.
office of justice services cont
Office of Justice Services ….cont
  • Slow hiring process due to the long wait for background checks.
  • Internal Affairs Office has a backlog which is forcing some Tribes to consider contracting this service locally.
  • Communications with contracted programs is minimal and although Tribes request financial information; it is not provided at all or is not provided timely.
  • Fair and equitable funding between direct service and contracted programs becomes an issue when its reported that direct service programs have an open purchase order and have received new firearms, vehicles and uniforms but contracted programs are not eligible to use the purchase order for their same needs.
  • New O&M Facilities should provide immediate start-up funding.
  • Oppose reduction in new construction funding
law enforcement services
Law Enforcement Services

638 contracts and direct funding, not DOJ grants are the preferred method of funding for Tribes in our Region to receive funding for a specific purpose. The grant system is short in duration; will not provide funding for existing purposes and places the burden on the Tribe to utilize its general fund or other sources to continue services that were funded through grants.

tribal courts
Tribal Courts
  • The 2009 Tribal Law and Order Act is an unfunded mandate requiring tribes to implement additional services.
  • Historically, funding for tribal courts has come from within either the tribe’s own coffers or from their TPA appropriations.
  • Increases of Law Enforcement activity have imposed a greater demand to tribal court systems without funding.
  • The tribes in the Great Plains Region would like to see a point-of-contact at the regional level to provide technical expertise in updating and implementation of individual law and order codes, court processes, separation of powers, and corrective action plans.
  • Although the review conducted by an independent private contractor recommended funding increases of $10 million above the 2010 enacted funding level, not all Tribes received increases to their baseline funding.


  • The Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) provides education services to approximately 41,000 Indian students with 11,000 in the Great Plains Region. Of the $2.4 billion appropriated for the Operation of Indian Programs, 32% of the funding is in the BIE budget.
  • No equity in the appropriations over the past decade, BIE Education Management, ISEP Program Adjustments, and Education Program Enhancements have grown by over two hundred percent (200%) while the appropriations for all School Based Programs (included are tribal, federal, and federal funds that flow through the state government, discretionary funding and entitlement programs) have stayed relatively stagnant.
  • Of the funds received to operate schools the BIE uses two-thirds (2/3) for administrative activities and the schools receive one third (1/3) of funds to operate. $22,000 plus is allocated per child but local funding received equals $7,900 per child.
  • Eliminate Positions at the Central Office of the Bureau of Indian Education and increase and retain Education staff at the local Agency and the tribe’s Tribal Education Department/Agency become the SEA.

The Road Maintenance funding provides for tribes and agencies to maintain reservation roads and bridges in a safe and efficient manner as defined by the Service Level Index. The funding has been decreased or diminished and has resulted in an erosion of base funding for this program under the current funding formula. It is difficult for Tribes to supplement for any new repairs or construction.

  • In 1991, the Great Plains Road Maintenance program was funded at $3.8 million. Twenty years later in 2011, the program was funded at $3.6 million. According to the 2013 Green Book “The proposed reduction of $320,000 will have a minimal impact on the current condition road maintenance activities.” This is not acceptable!
  • The final 2012 Great Plains Road Maintenance program is funded at $3.4 million, $200,000 less than 2011.
  • We estimate the Great Plains Region is funded at less than 15% of what is needed to provide required road and bridge maintenance.
transportation cont
Transportation cont…..

The tribes are in full support of President Obama’s Strengthening Tribal Nations Initiatives, particularly Advancing Nation-to-Nation Relationships. This initiative is geared toward strengthening the capacity of Tribes to manage the Federal programs they contract, as well as eliminate the need for Tribes to use program funds to fulfill administrative requirements.

  • Regionally, the tribes that have contracted this program have utilized their own revenue, construction funds, fuel tax revenues, maintenance on old road machinery and new machinery, etc. to augment those funds provided by BIA.
  • Indian Reservation Road funding, must be limited for use only on the interior Reservation Roads.
  • The Great Plains Tribes support retaining the name and definition of the Indian Reservation Roads (IRR) program.
final comments and recommendations
Final Comments and Recommendations
  • Creation of a Cabinet Level Position for Indian Affairs.
  • Create a special category for Large and Needy Tribes
  • Restructure Indian Affairs and realign all programs, including FTE’s and funding, back to the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Eliminate Stove Piping.
  • Utilize ALL unobligated balances under the Assistant Secretary oversight (BIA, OJS, BIE, OST, Economic Development.)
  • Funds must be provided for the continued development of the United Tribes Technical Training College Law Enforcement Training Center.
  • Internal budget changes always have a negative impact to Tribes. Administrative Savings and Fixed Costs leave budgets flat with no realization of funding increases
  • The BIA, OJS and DOJ must meet and work with Tribes to develop strategic plans.
  • The BIA must work with Tribes to develop GPRA measures that are meaningful and provide training to BIA and tribal officials on the GPRA measures.
  • Eliminate Deputy Superintendent functions and redirect funding to establish local Self Determination Awarding Officials and GPRA specialist.
final comments and recommendations1
Final Comments and Recommendations

President Obama’s Strengthening Tribal Nations Initiatives, particularly Advancing Nation-to-Nation Relationships, is a good concept but not reflected across the board.

  • Organizational Restructuring
  • Elimination of Programs
  • Reduction of Funding
  • Unfunded Mandates
  • Changing the definition of an Indian


  • 1. Restore Residential Education Placement Program funds, $ 4,000,000. This Program Element provides funding for BIE eligible students who are temporarily placed in residential facilities for Special Education, Alcohol/Drug Abuse, and Court Ordered placements.
  • 2. Restore the Construction – Education Construction Activity to the FY 2010 levels. The BIA reports a $ 70,000,000 annual facility deterioration rate and also reports a $3.4 billion school replacement need.
  • 3. Decrease - These funds are currently used to control the schools and hamper progress, the BIE uses these Program Elements funds to dictate [use Reading and Math programs that do not work according to] what schools should do to improve assessment scores based on AYP requirements, and has nothing to do with school improvement. The funds should go to the local schools and let them decide what works. The funds should be moved to ISEP, Transportation, Facility Operations, Facility Maintenance, and Tribal Grant Support Costs:
  • BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-ISEP Program Adjustments $ 5,302,000
  • BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-Education Program Enhancements $ 12,663,000
  • Total$ 17,965,000
  • Restore and/or Increase (Part of a 5 year phased plan to fully fund Basic School Programs for 49,000 children):

BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-ISEP Formula Funds $10,858,000

BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-Student Transportation $ 4,212,000

BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-Facility Maintenance $ 2,254,000

BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-Facility Operations $ 6,737,000

BIE-Elementary/Secondary Programs-Tribal Grant Support Costs $ 4,627,000

Sub-Total additional need for nearly 49,000 children $28,688,000

Less requested decrease $17,965,000

Total requested increase for FY 13 $10,723,000


5. Eliminate the following Administrative Provisions language to allow current schools to expand grade level offerings and allow tribes to apply to operate a Grant School:

  • No funds available to the Bureau shall be used to support expanded grades for any school or dormitory beyond the grade structure in place or approved by the Secretary of the Interior at each school in the Bureau school system as of October 1, 1995. Appropriations made available in this or any prior Act for schools funded by the Bureau shall be available, in accordance with the BIE funding formula, only to the schools in the Bureau school system as of September 1, 996 and to any school or school program that was re-instated in FY 2012.

6. Allow additional appropriations for Tribal Grant Support Costs:

  • “Provided further, That notwithstanding any other provision of law, including but not limited to the Indian Self-Determination Act of 1975, as amended, and 25 U.S.C. 2008, not to exceed $ 52,879,000 within and only from such amounts made available for school operations shall be available for grant support costs associated with ongoing grants entered into with the Bureau prior to or during fiscal year 2013 for the operation of Bureau-funded schools, and up to $500,000 within and only from such amounts made available for administrative cost grants shall be available for the transitional costs of initial administrative cost grants to grantees that assume operation on or after July 1, 2012, of Bureau-funded schools”