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Interior Extends Comment Period on Proposed Federal Acknowledgment Reform

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn today announced an extension of the public comment period and additional tribal consultations and public meetings on proposed regulations to reform the process by which Interior formally and officially recognizes Indian tribes.

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Interior Department Announces $2.5 million to Promote Tribal Control and Operation of BIE-Funded Schools

As part of the Obama Administration’s historic commitment to ensure that all students attending Bureau of Indian Education-funded schools receive an effective education delivered to them by tribes, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the BIE will fund $2.5 million in Sovereignty in Indian Education competitive grants. The purpose of these grants is to provide funding to federally recognized tribes and their tribal education departments to promote tribal control and operation of BIE-funded schools on their reservations.

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Secretary Jewell Announces new Tribal Climate Resilience Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and continued commitment to support Native American leaders in building strong, resilient communities, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn today announced the Administration has dedicated nearly $10 million this year to help tribes prepare for climate change through adaptation and mitigation. The Tribal Climate Resilience Program, which will be announced today at the fourth and final meeting of the White House State, Local, and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, is part of a new initiative to work toward addressing the impacts of climate change already affecting tribal communities.

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Interior Department Extends Deadline for Public Comment on Proposed Rule to Take Land into Trust for Alaska Native Tribes

Washington, D.C. — Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced an extension of the comment deadline on the proposed rule to accept applications to place land into trust in Alaska, in response to several requests for extension. The public may provide written comment through July 31, 2014. The proposed rule was announced earlier this year as part of President Obama’s commitment to upholding the nation’s trust responsibilities to American Indian and Alaska Natives.

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Interior Transfers Nearly $3 Million from Land Buy-Back Program to Cobell Education Scholarship Fund

The Department of the Interior today announced that $2.9 million has been transferred to the Cobell Education Scholarship Fund. The Scholarship Fund was authorized by the historic Cobell Settlement and provides financial assistance through annual scholarships to American Indian and Alaska Native students wishing to pursue post-secondary education and training.

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