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    DEADLINE: Land Buy-Back Program Planning Initiative

    The Land Buy-Back Program has announced more than 40 locations where implementation will begin by the middle of 2017. In November 2015, the Buy-Back Program announced a Planning Initiative to assist in the development of its next implementation schedule for 2017 and beyond. The two-pronged Planning Initiative seeks input from Tribal governments and landowners who are interested in participating in the Program.

    The Buy-Back Program now invites expressions of interest from eligible Tribes that are not among those scheduled for implementation through mid-2017. The Program recognizes that a number of Tribes have already registered their interest, but have not yet been scheduled for implementation. Those Tribes which previously submitted written expressions of interest are invited to supplement their initial submissions by the deadline, if necessary.

    A formal expression of interest is one factor among others considered in scheduling a location for land consolidation activities. Timely submissions will be utilized by the Program in developing its schedule for 2017 and beyond. The deadline for providing expressions of interest to the Buy-Back Program is March 11, 2016.

    This will likely be the final opportunity for tribes to formally express interest in the Buy-Back Program, given the need to plan for allocation of available resources within the 10-year timeframe established under the Cobell Settlement.

    Additional opportunities to learn about the Program and Planning Initiative are outlined in this letter sent by John McClanahan on January 28, 2016.