New Senate committee incorporates tribes into policymaking

By Eastern Arizona Courier

Members of the new state Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Indian Affairs met for the first time in Phoenix on July 15. On the committee is San Carlos Apache Tribal Chairman Terry Rambler, second from left.

Members of the new state Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Indian Affairs met for the first time in Phoenix on July 15. On the committee is San Carlos Apache Tribal Chairman Terry Rambler, second from left.

PHOENIX — A new state Senate committee made its debut July 15.

The Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Indian Affairs is designed as a joint undertaking between the state and the tribes. State Sen. Carlyle Begay, D-Ganado, said he launched the committee as a way to foster crucial relationships and open communication between tribal leaders and state government.

“There are 22 tribal communities in Arizona, and it’s essential that we bridge the gap between the tribes and state government so we can work together on some of Arizona’s prominent issues, such as Indian gaming and water rights,” Begay said. “This committee seeks to improve communications and build a sense of trust between Arizona’s tribal citizens, communities and governments.”

Tribal issues often cut across party lines, so with this in mind, the committee was formed with Democrats, Republicans and tribal leaders as members to ensure balanced views and perspectives.

“I want to thank the state Senate for establishing the Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Indian Affairs and including tribal leaders. Today our discussions centered on Indian education, and I am hopeful that this is a new era of collaboration between the state of Arizona and Indian tribes. This will not only provide education and awareness, but a joint partnership on improving relations between governments,” said San Carlos Apache Tribal Chairman Terry Rambler,

During the first meeting, the committee received reports from the Arizona Department of Education on the status of Native American education, on the activities of the ADE Native American Advisory Council and from the Arizona State Board for Charter Schools.

The committee also heard presentations regarding Native American Joint Technical Education District (JTED) program funding and the Indian School Bus Routes Maintenance Program. Representatives from the Goldwater Institute updated the committee on the status of the Indian Child Welfare Act lawsuit. Finally, the committee heard testimony from the public.

The next Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Indian Affairs will be in August.

Jim Belushi and The Sacred Hearts to Perform at American Indian College Fund’s 25th Anniversary Chicago Gala

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Source: American Indian College Fund

DENVER, April 23, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The American Indian College Fund (the College Fund) has signed Jim Belushi and The Sacred Hearts to perform live at its 25th Anniversary Gala, to be held Friday, May 8 from 6:30-10:30 p.m. at the legendary Drake Hotel. The formal fundraising event will benefit Native American higher education and celebrate the College Fund’s mission to provide access to higher education for all Native people.

VIP ticket-holders will enjoy a special reception and the opportunity to meet Jim Belushi.

A silent auction featuring Native art and unique items will also be held at the event. In addition, the College Fund will be accepting bids for a guest to perform the song “Soul Man” with Jim Belushi and The Sacred Hearts that evening.

All VIP packages, tickets, individual tickets, tables, and sponsorships are available for purchase now. Visit collegefund.org/gala to learn more or call 303-426-8900.

25th Anniversary event sponsors include Toyota Motor Sales USA, Inc.; Comcast NBCUNIVERSAL; Wieden+Kennedy; Ford Foundation; San Manuel Band of Mission Indians; The Walt Disney Company; AT&T; and McDonald’s Corporation.