DEADLINE EXTENDED: BIA Proposed Rule for Obtaining Rights-of-Way on Indian Land

On June 17, 2014 the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) proposed a new rule to comprehensively update and streamline the process for obtaining rights-of-way on Indian land. BIA has extended the deadline to submit comments on November 28, 2014.

The current regulations were promulgated in 1968, and last updated in 1980. In December 2012, the Department issued final regulations comprehensively reforming residential, business, and wind and solar leasing on Indian land and streamlining the leasing process. BIA is updating the Rights-of-Way regulations to mirror those revisions to the extent applicable in the rights-of-way context. Highlights of the proposed rights-of-way revisions include:

• Eliminating the need to obtain BIA consent for surveying in preparation for a right-of-way;

• Establishing timelines for BIA review of rights-of-way requests;

• Clarifying processes for BIA review of right-of-way documents;

• Allowing BIA disapproval only where there is a stated compelling reason;

• Providing greater deference to Tribes on compensation for rights-of-way;

• Clarifying the authority by which BIA approves rights-of-way; and

• Eliminating outdated requirements specific to different types of rights-of-way.

Comments on this rule must be submitted by November 28, 2014 to For additional information please contact Elizabeth Appel, Director, Office of Regulatory Affairs & Collaborative Action, at (202) 273-4680 or

Share Your Story Today: Win Advanced Appropriations for the Indian Health Service

Funding for the Indian health system is a result of Treaties and other legal obligations made by the federal government with Indian Country and should not be held hostage each year. Adopting an advanced appropriations process is one solution advocates are pursuing to assist Tribal and IHS facilities fiscally plan more efficiently. Advanced appropriations would mean Tribal and IHS facilities would know their funding levels one year in advance, just as it does for the Veterans’ Health Administration.

This might make sense to us, but we need help convincing Congress!

-Please share some examples of how delays in funding or short term funding by Congress has hurt health delivery or hindered long term planning at your facility. You can send examples to
Terra Branson

To learn more about this effort click here.

Acting IHS Director Announces Plans for MSPI and DVPI Funding

The Acting IHS Director, Dr. Yvette Roubideaux, sent a letter to Tribal Leaders on May 27, 2014 providing an update for funding Methamphetamine and Suicide Prevention Initiative (MSPI) and the Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative (DVPI). The letter notes that in FY 2015 IHS will develop and open a new competitive application process for a 5-year MSPI and DVPI program that will be developed based on the best and promising practices, lessons learned, and evaluation data from the MSPI and DVPI demonstration/pilot phase.

Each IHS Area Director will host a consultation to collect Tribal feedback. To learn more about the plan and read the letter click here.

IHS Acting Director Provides CSC Update

The IHS Acting Director, Dr. Roubideaux, sent a letter to Tribes that provided up an updated on Contract Support Costs. The letter includes updates on past CSC claims settlement, CSC appropriations, distribution of CSC funding this year, and consultation on the long term solution for CSC amounts. During the Annual Tribal Self Governance Consultation Conference last week that Dr. Roubideaux announced that IHS has made significant progress on settling past CSC claims, especially since we have committed increased resources and staff and recently adopted a more efficient settlement approach.

A copy of the letter sent to Tribes is here and full text of the Acting Director’s comments are available here.

Acting Director Roubideaux Announces SDPI Funding Distribution

On Friday, May 9, 2014, the Indian Health Service (IHS) Acting Director announced that SDPI funding will maintain the same distribution as in previous years as requested by the Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee (TLDC). The letter can be reviewed here.

OTSG's Resources and Materials webpage is a great place to get educational materials! Click Here

OTSG's Frequently Asked Questions About Tribal Self-Governance webpage is a great place to get answers about Tribal Self-Governance - Click Here

Indian Health Service:
Dr. Roubideaux's Directors Blog

Indian Health Service:
Fact Sheets Webpage

Indian Health Service:
Press Releases - Webpage

Indian Health Service:
Tribal Leader Letters - Webpage


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