Indian tribes set to begin marijuana sales

Tony Reider, president of the Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, wants to make his tribe the first in the nation to sell recreational marijuana. Here he’s shown under the grow lamps of a medical marijuana growing facility in Phoenix in March 2015.PHOTO COURTESY OF TONY REIDER — Handout

Tony Reider, president of the Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, wants to make his tribe the first in the nation to sell recreational marijuana. Here he’s shown under the grow lamps of a medical marijuana growing facility in Phoenix in March 2015.
PHOTO COURTESY OF TONY REIDER — Handout

BY ROB HOTAKAINEN, Sun Herald

WASHINGTON — Tourists soon may be able to go to a South Dakota Indian reservation, buy a cigarette-sized marijuana joint for $10 to $15 and try their luck at the nearby casino.

In December, the Flandreau Santee Siouxexpect to become the first tribe in the nation to grow and sell pot for recreational use, cashing in on the Obama administration’s offer to let all 566 federally recognized tribes enter the marijuana industry.

“The fact that we are first doesn’t scare us,” said tribal president Anthony “Tony” Reider, 38, who’s led the tribe for nearly five years. “The Department of Justice gave us the go-ahead, similar to what they did with the states, so we’re comfortable going with it.”

The tribe plans to sell 60 strains of marijuana. Reider is hoping for a flock of visitors, predicting that sales could bring in as much as $2 million per month.

“Obviously, when you launch a business, you’re hoping to sell all the product and have a shortage, like Colorado did when they first opened,” he said.

Other tribes have been much more hesitant.

“Look at Washington state, where marijuana’s completely legal as a matter of state law everywhere, and you still have tribes adhering to their prohibition policies,” said Robert Odawi Porter, former president of the Seneca Nation of New York.

It comes as no surprise to Washington state Democratic Rep. Denny Heck, who says he works on tribal issues every day.

“Not once has anybody ever brought up that they wanted to go down this track,” he said.

Heck speculated on one possible reason: “We’re all aware of the painful history of alcoholism in Indian Country.”

Tribes won the approval to sell pot in December, when the Justice Department said it would advise U.S. attorneys not to prosecute if tribes do a good job policing themselves and make sure that marijuana doesn’t leave tribal lands.

But federal prosecutors maintain the discretion to intervene, a worrisome prospect for many.

“This administration is very pro-tribes, very supportive. What if the next one isn’t?” asked W. Ron Allen, chairman of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe in Washington state.

He said many of the state’s 29 tribes also want assurances from federal officials that they won’t lose millions of dollars in grants and contracts if they sell a drug banned by Congress.

“We’re not getting definitive answers back,” Allen said. “There’s a number of tribes that are very aggressively looking into it and trying to sort through all the legal issues. The rest of us are just kind of on the sidelines watching.”

 

Many tribal officials took note earlier this month when federal authorities seized 12,000 marijuana plants and more than 100 pounds of processed marijuana on tribal land in Modoc County, Calif.

Federal authorities said they raided the operation because the tribes planned to sell the pot on non-reservation land.

“That’s a warning shot to Indian County that this isn’t carte blanche to do whatever you want, even in a place like California,” said Blake Trueblood, director of business development for the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development, based in Arizona.

Trueblood said marijuana could give tribes an economic boost, much like gaming. He said tribes will have the best opportunities in states such as Florida and New York, where demand for pot is high but the drug has not been legalized for recreational use by state voters.

“Ultimately, I think you’ll see legal marijuana in every state,” Trueblood said. “I think that’s fairly inevitable, even in very conservative places like Florida.”

 

Reider said his tribe plans to sell both medical and recreational marijuana. Minors will be allowed to consume pot if they have a recommendation from a doctor. Under a tribal ordinance passed in June, adults 21 and over will be able to buy one gram of marijuana at a time for recreational use, no more than twice a day.

“We really don’t want the stuff getting out to the street,” Reider said. “So we’re going to have like a bar setting where they’ll be able to consume small amounts while on the property.”

Kevin Sabet, president of the anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, said the California raid shows that it’s still “an extremely risky venture” for any tribe to start selling marijuana. And he said pot sales would fuel more addiction.

“If we think alcohol has had a negative effect on young people on tribal lands, we ain’t seen nothing yet,” Sabet said.

 

As part of his homework, Reider said, he traveled to Colorado, the first state to sell recreational pot last year. He said he does not smoke marijuana but has concluded that it’s safer than alcohol, citing the behavior he witnessed at the Cannabis Cup, a marijuana celebration held in Denver in April.

“It was a peaceful environment,” he said. “Everybody was overly friendly, overly talkative to each other and respectful of each other. Where if you go to a concert where there’s a lot of alcohol, you typically see fights and arguments.”

 

Reider said the tribe plans to begin growing 6,000 marijuana plants in October and is renovating a bowling alley to house a new consumption lounge that will include four private rooms. He said the tribe may consider allowing marijuana consumption in its casino in the future.

Reider acknowledged that it’s “kind of an awkward feeling” to start selling pot, but he figures the tribe is well-equipped.

“When we started looking into it, it’s comical at first, but then you realize it’s an amazing business,” he said. “It’s highly regulated, and we’re used to the regulation from operating our casino. We’ve got security and surveillance.”

Reider said profits from pot sales will be used to help tribal members. He said that could include the construction of a facility for those addicted to alcohol, prescription drugs or methamphetamine.

“We don’t have a recovery treatment center on the reservation right now,” Reider said. “Potentially we could look to fund one of those operations, and not just for marijuana addiction.”

Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2015/07/29/6341934/indian-tribes-set-to-begin-marijuana.html#storylink=cpy

 

Connecticut officials praise changes on tribal recognition

By Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut’s top elected leaders are declaring victory in their efforts to see that it does not become easier for local American Indian tribes to obtain federal recognition.

President Barack Obama‘s administration on Monday issued changes to regulations that have been criticized as cumbersome and lacking transparency. Proposed new rules that were first issued in draft form two years ago were seen by officials in Connecticut as clearing the way for three groups that previously had been denied federal recognition to win the prized status.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Connecticut’s two U.S. senators, Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, said at a news conference Monday afternoon that revisions in the final version will prevent those groups from winning recognition and pressing claims for surrounding lands.

“I would like to thank President Obama and Vice President Biden for heeding our concerns,” Malloy said.

He said the changes ensure that groups in Connecticut that already have fallen short of recognition will be blocked from another attempt.

Connecticut has two federally recognized tribes, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe, which own the country’s two largest Indian-owned casinos in the Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun.

The changes that were initially proposed were seen as benefiting three other Connecticut tribes — the Schaghticokes of Kent, the Golden Hill Paugussetts of Trumbull and Colchester and the Eastern Pequots of North Stonington. Federal acknowledgment can bolster a tribe’s claims to surrounding land, eliminate regulatory barriers to commercial development and bring increased health and education benefits to members.

Connecticut’s congressional delegation said they were pleased the Bureau of Indian Affairs reversed course on a plan that would have given another chance to previously denied petitioners.

“That severely flawed proposal would have forced residents, communities and the state to re-litigate petitions already dismissed with substantial evidence and review — causing needless uncertainty for landowners whose properties may have been claimed as reservation land,” they said.

Leaders of the tribal groups that had been hoping for a new path to recognition did not respond to messages seeking comment.

State, tribal leaders seek to expand Insure Oklahoma program to about 40,000 tribal members

By SEAN MURPHY,  Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY — While state leaders remain steadfastly opposed to a Medicaid expansion offered under the federal health care law, some of Oklahoma’s 39 federally recognized Native American tribes are exploring opportunities for a federal waiver that could mean health insurance for about 40,000 low-income uninsured tribal members.

Oklahoma Health Care Authority CEO Nico Gomez said talks are underway about seeking an expansion of the state’s Insure Oklahoma program to include some of the estimated 80,000 Native Americans in Oklahoma without health insurance. Gomez estimated as many as half of those tribal citizens could qualify for the program, depending on where the income threshold is set.

Although still conceptual, Gomez said the idea would involve the tribal citizen paying a portion of the health insurance premium, the tribe paying a portion, and the federal government paying the largest part.

“We’re not looking at tapping into any state revenue, not now or in the future,” Gomez said. “Frankly, if it required any state revenue, I’m not sure we’d even be having this conversation.”

Gomez said the proposal was initially discussed last week with tribal representatives, and that he plans to brief members of the Health Care Authority’s governing board during its regular meeting on Thursday. Some of the state’s largest tribes, including the Chickasaw and Cherokee nations, are involved in discussions, Gomez said.

Insure Oklahoma provides health coverage to about 18,000 low-income Oklahoma residents, mostly through a program in which the cost of premiums are shared by the state (60 percent), the employer (25 percent) and the employee (15 percent). The state portion of the program is funded through a tax on tobacco sales, but a federal waiver that allows the program to operate has only been approved through the end of the year.

Gomez said expanding the program to include a tribal option could help ensure the federal waiver continues.

Billy James, a 31-year-old University of Oklahoma student and a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, said he wants to have health insurance but can’t afford the premiums.

“I’m trying to hold out as long as I can,” said James, who is finishing his master’s degree and currently unemployed. “I’m kind of scared about not having insurance, but I’ve got to tough it out a little while longer.”

A spokesman for Gov. Mary Fallin, a staunch supporter of the Insure Oklahoma program, said the governor is excited about the potential of a tribal expansion.

“We’re particularly excited about the fact that it would not cost the state any tax dollars, which is important as we deal with our current shortfall,” Fallin spokesman Alex Weintz said.

Currently, there are about 130,000 Native Americans in the state’s Medicaid program, which is about 16 percent of the overall Medicaid population in Oklahoma.

AB 52, Native American bill, passes Senate

Major changes to legislation co-authored by Alejo

By Phillip Molnar, Monterey Herald

SACRAMENTO >> Native American legislation seemingly opposed by thousands was significantly altered before it was passed by the California Senate on Wednesday.

AB 52, a bill co-authored by Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, is designed to give Native American tribes more power in the state’s environmental laws, but it galvanized non-federally recognized tribes not included in the bill.

Non-federally recognized tribes pestered lawmakers for months and started an online petition which gathered 8,386 signatures.

In the amended version, both federally and non-federally recognized tribes are included in the definition of a tribe and non-federally recognized tribes were included in the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA.

“Although there are still a few sections where we have some reservations, overall, AB 52 in its final draft reflects the two big changes our coalition requested,” said Angela Mooney D’Arcy, executive director of the Sacred Places Institute for Indigenous Peoples.

Alejo spokesman John de los Angeles said the assemblyman passed on concerns some Native Americans had with the bill, especially from his own district, to its main author, Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles.

Efforts to reach Gatto were unsuccessful.

The bill passed in the Senate 35-0. It must now go back to the Assembly because of the many amendments in the Senate. After that, it can go to Gov. Jerry Brown.

After the changes were announced, signers of the petition on Changes.com expressed delight.

“Congratulations to all the CA tribes,” wrote Carolyn Kualii. “This is a move in the right direction!”

The bill still faces major opposition from business groups because they fear it will result in more CEQA litigation because of claims of tribal heritage at development sites.

The Sacramento Bee editorial board put AB 52 on its “three bills for the governor to kill” list because of classifications of “sacred places” and “cultural resources.”

“The definition is left so open-ended it would add a new layer of anxiety to what is already a horror movie of an environmental review process,” it wrote.

There are 110 federally recognized tribes in California and 78 tribal communities petitioning for recognition, including three in Monterey County, according to the Judicial Council of California.

Louise Miranda Ramirez, tribal chairwoman of the local Ohlone/Costanoan-Esselen Nation, said she was still concerned about some of the language which allows lead agencies in some cases to “consider” mitigation measures (rather than “select,” as it said before.).

Ultimately, she said she was pleased with the changes but questioned why the bill “was so broken in the first place.”

Phillip Molnar can be reached at 831-726-4361.

Limits on Access to Eagle Feathers Questioned

By Cameron Langford, Courthouse News Service

(CN) – The Interior Department may be infringing on the religious freedom of Native Americans by limiting the right to possess eagle feathers to federally recognized tribes, the 5th Circuit ruled.
Understanding golden and bald eagles are essential for the religious practices of many American Indian tribes, Congress amended the Eagle Protection Act in 1962, adding an exception “for the religious practices of Indian tribes.”
Under the law, Native Americans could apply for a permit to take and possess eagles by attaching a certificate from the Bureau of Indian Affairs that verified them as Indian to their application.
Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt narrowed the eligibility in 1999 to members of federally recognized Indian tribes.
The National Eagle Repository in Colorado takes in dead eagle parts and distributes them to qualified permit applicants, with whole bird orders taking more than three years to fill, and loose feather requests taking about six months to turn around, court records show.
At a 2006 powwow a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agent found Robert Soto in possession of eagle feathers.
Soto told the agent he was a member of the Lipan Apache Tribe, and after the officer determined the tribe is not federally recognized, he met with Soto, who voluntarily gave up his eagle feathers in return for the government dropping its criminal case against him.
As pastor of the McAllen Grace Brethren Church and the Native American New Life Center in McAllen, Texas, Soto uses eagle feathers for his ministry’s religious ceremonies.
Soto “has been a feather dancer for 34 years and has won many awards for his Indian dancing and artwork at various powwows throughout the nation,” according to his self-published biography.
After the Interior Department denied Soto’s petition for the return of his feathers, he and 15 other plaintiffs sued, claiming the feather confiscation violated religious freedoms established by the First Amendment.
U.S. District Judge Ricardo Hinojosa sided with the feds and Soto appealed to the 5th Circuit in New Orleans.
Writing for a three-judge panel of the appellate court, Judge Catharina Haynes found the government had not carried its burden of showing its regulations are the least restrictive means of protecting what it claims are its compelling interests: protecting eagles and fulfilling its responsibility to federally recognized tribes.
Noting that the 1962 Amendment to the Eagle Protection Act “did not define ‘Indian Tribes,'” Haynes wrote on Wednesday, “We cannot definitively conclude that Congress intended to protect only federally recognized tribe members’ religious rights in this section.”
She added: “The Department has failed to present evidence at the summary judgment phase that an individual like Soto-whose sincerity is not in question and is of American Indian descent-would somehow cause harm to the relationship between federal tribes and the government if he were allowed access to eagle feathers, especially given congressional findings that the exception was born out of a religious concern.”(Emphasis in original.)
The law also grants the Interior Secretary authority to OK the taking of eagles or eagle parts for public museums, scientific groups, zoos, wildlife and agricultural protection.
Haynes took issue with the fact that the government did not bring up these various nonreligious exceptions to the law.
The feds additionally argued that removing barriers to possession would lead to a spike in poaching to supply a black market in eagles and eagle feathers.
But Haynes dismissed that as “mere speculation” by the federal agents who testified in the case.
“This case involves eagle feathers, rather than carcasses. It is not necessary for an eagle to die in order to obtain its feathers. Thus, speculation about poaching for carcasses is irrelevant to Soto’s request for return of feathers,” the 25-page ruling states.
In coming down on the side of religious freedom, the panel relied heavily on the Supreme Court’s recent Hobby Lobby ruling, which found that requiring some corporations to supply contraceptives to their employees against their religious objections violates the Religious Freedom of Restoration Act.
The panel reversed and remanded the case to Hinojosa and urged the government to prove the permitting system does not violate the RFRA.
In a one-page concurring opinion Judge Edith Jones said the ruling should be read to only apply to American Indians.
“Broadening the universe of ‘believers’ who seek eagle feathers might … seriously endanger the religious practices of real Native Americans,” she wrote.

Assistant Secretary Washburn Announces Solicitation of Grant Proposals to Assess and Develop Tribal Energy and Mineral Resources

$11 million available in 2014 for federally recognized tribal communities

Source: Office of the Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn today announced that the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED)  is soliciting grant proposals from federally recognized tribes for projects that promote the assessment and development of energy and mineral resources on Indian trust lands.  IEED has $11 million available in FY 2014 for grants, which is a historic level of investment that will support tribes seeking to put their energy and mineral assets to work for their communities.

“The IEED Energy and Mineral Development Program is another example of how Indian Affairs is working to assist tribes in realizing and maximizing the potential of their energy and mineral resources,” Assistant Secretary Washburn said.  “This solicitation will provide tribal communities owning energy and mineral resources the opportunity and financial support to conduct projects that will evaluate, find and document their energy and mineral assets, and bring those assets to market.”

Energy and mineral development on Indian trust lands plays a critical role in creating jobs and generating income throughout Indian Country while also contributing to the national economy.  All natural resources produced on Indian trust lands had an estimated economic impact of $12.08 billion, with over 85 percent of this impact derived from energy and mineral development on tribal lands, according to the Department of the Interiors Economic Contributions report issued in July 2012.  The report also noted that out of an estimated 126,000 natural resources-related jobs on tribal lands in Fiscal Year 2011, 88.7 percent were directly associated with energy and mineral development. Energy and mineral resources generated more than $970 million in royalty revenue paid to Indian mineral owners in 2013. Income from energy and minerals is by far the largest source of revenue generated from Indian trust lands.

IEED’s Division of Energy and Mineral Development, through its Energy and Mineral Development Program (EMDP), annually solicits proposals from federally recognized tribes for energy and mineral development projects that assess, locate and inventory energy and mineral resources, or perform feasibility or market studies which are used to promote the use and development of  energy and mineral resources on Indian lands.

Energy and mineral resources may include either conventional such as oil, natural gas or coal, or renewable energy resources such as biomass, geothermal or hydroelectric.  Mineral resources include industrial minerals such as sand and gravel; precious minerals such as gold, silver and platinum; base minerals including lead, copper and zinc; and ferrous metal minerals such as iron, tungsten and chromium.

The EMDP is mandated under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (25 USC 3501 et seq.) which requires the Secretary of the Interior to “establish and implement an Indian energy resource development program to assist consenting Indian tribes and tribal energy resource development organizations…[and]…provide grants…for use in carrying out projects to promote the integration of energy resources, and to process, use, or develop those energy resources, on Indian land….”

EMDP is funded under the non-recurring appropriation of the Bureau of Indian Affairs budget and is based on available funds.  It is an annual program, and uses a competitive evaluation process to select several proposed projects to receive an award.  Since 1982, the EMDP has invested about $90 million in developing energy and mineral resource information on Indian lands. These funds have defined more than $800 billion of potential energy and mineral resources. 

The Department published a solicitation on the Grants.gov website on June 9, 2014.  Proposals must be submitted no later than 75 calendar days from the announcement date.  The Grants.gov website posting contains all of the guidelines for writing a proposal and instructions for submitting a completed proposal to the DEMD office.

The Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs oversees the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development, which implements the Indian Energy Resource Development Program under Title V of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.  IEED’s mission is to foster stronger American Indian and Alaska Native communities by helping federally recognized tribes with employment and workforce training programs; developing their renewable and non-renewable energy and mineral resources; and increasing access to capital for tribal and individual American Indian- and Alaska Native-owned businesses.  For more information about IEED programs and services, visit the Indian Affairs website at http://www.indianaffairs.gov/WhoWeAre/AS-IA/IEED/index.htm.

 

 

Connecticut Towns Join Sen. Blumenthal’s Anti-Indian Campaign

Gale Courey Toensing, Indian Country Today Media Network

Connecticut officials have jumped on Sen. Richard Blumenthal’s bandwagon of opposition to the Interior Department’s proposed revisions to the federal recognition regulations.

RELATED: Blumenthal Stirs Opposition Federal Recognition Again

On June 21, Kevin Washburn, Interior’s Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, unveiled a red lined “Preliminary Discussion Draft” of potential changes to Interior’s process for federally acknowledging Indian tribes.

RELATED: Washburn’s Bold Plan to Fix Interiors Federal Recognition Process

Two weeks later Blumenthal organized a meeting in his Connecticut office to rouse local and state officials into fighting the proposed revisions in order to prevent the possible federal acknowledgment of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation (STN), the Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation (EPTN), and the Golden Hill Paugusetts. Now those state officials are reaching out to both the federal government and local officials in their efforts to delay and ultimately quash any possibility that those three state-recognized tribes could become federally acknowledged.

On July 22, John Rodolico, Nicholas Mullane and Robert Congdon, respectively, the mayor and first selectmen of the towns of Ledyard, North Stonington and Preston in southeastern Connecticut where the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and Mohegan Tribe own and operate Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun, wrote to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell complaining about what they claim would be “dramatic consequences for our towns and the state of Connecticut” if the proposed changes were enacted. “Despite the clear effect of the proposal on previously denied and potential future tribal acknowledgment decisions in Connecticut, no meeting has been scheduled anywhere close to our state and a short comment period of only 60 days has been offered,” the elected officials wrote. They did not describe the “dramatic consequences” or the “clear effect” of the proposed revisions on the state, but they asked Jewell to extend the August 16 comment period by 45 days.

Even though Washburn had already announced that Interior would hold both tribal consultations and public comment sessions, the town officials pushed for public comments. “We understand that the announced basis for the release of the preliminary draft is to consult with tribal interests under federal Indian policy. Comments from non-tribal interests are also essential, however. BIA can obtain a full record and be properly advised on the proposal only if it provides sufficient time to review this highly detailed proposal.”

The town officials were an integral part of Blumenthal’s previous organized – and successful – anti-Indian acknowledgment efforts. The former Connecticut attorney general orchestrated a campaign of political opposition that included local, state and federal elected officials and an anti-Indian sovereignty group with a powerful White House-connected lobbyist – Barbour Griffith & Rogers (BGR) – in 2004-2005. After 18 months of relentless lobbying, the BIA in an unprecedented move reversed its Final Determinations and issued Reconsidered Final Determinations (RFD) overturning both the STN and EPTN’s federal acknowledgment. James Cason, Interior’s Associate Deputy Secretary at the time and a non-Indian Bush appointee, issued the RFD.

RELATED: Judge Denies Schaghticoke Federal Recognition Appeal

Ironically, the town officials told Jewell there’s no need to change the regulations. “The current rules have been in effect for over 30 years, and we are aware of no reason to rush through a sweeping revision process such as been proposed in the preliminary discussion draft,” they wrote. These same town officials, however, joined in the chorus of Connecticut official voices that complained that the federal recognition process was “broken” and “tainted by political influence” (even though the Inspector General investigated and found no wrong doing on the part of the tribes or BIA staff) when the EPTN and STN received positive Final Determinations but lauded the regulations and process once the tribes’ acknowledgments were overturned.

RELATED: Blumenthal Blasts BIAs New Rules

RELATED: Schaghticoke and Eastern Pequot Decisions Reversed

Schaghticoke Tribal Nation Chief Richard Velky could not be reached for comment, nor could a spokesperson for the Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation. But an STN member close to the chief who asked not to be named said that Blumenthal and the town officials he leads are “up to their same old tricks. They want the extension only so that they can muster up anti-Indian support across the United States to oppose the tribes in Connecticut like they did in 2004 and 2005. They’ve been prepared to oppose the Schaghticokes for the last 200 years. They really don’t need the extra time – all their opposition is already on file with the federal government.”

According to e-mails reviewed by Indian Country Today Media Network, the e-mail to Jewell was written by Don Baur of the firm Perkins Coie, which represented the towns in previously opposing STN and EPTN. The North Stonington selectman sent the letter to several town officials seeking their signatures or suggesting they write their own letters of opposition to the proposed revisions to the Interior secretary.

 

Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2013/07/31/connecticut-town-officials-dance-blumenthals-anti-indian-tune-150656

BIA is late to publish annual list of federally recognized tribes

Monday, May 6, 2013

Indianz.com Staff

The Bureau of Indian Affairs published its annual list of federally recognized tribes in the Federal Register today but once again it was late.

The Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994 requires the BIA to publish the list “annually on or before every January 30.” But the agency has missed the deadline for several years in a row — in 2012, it was published in August and in 2011, it wasn’t published at all.

In 2010, the BIA published the list in October and in 2009, it was published in August. The agency came close to the deadline in 2008 — the list was published in April — and in 2007 — it was published in March.

The BIA didn’t publish the list in 2006. In 2005, it was published in November.

The 2013 list contains 566 federally recognized tribes in the Lower 48 and Alaska.

“The listed entities are acknowledged to have the immunities and privileges available to other federally acknowledged Indian tribes by virtue of their government-to-government relationship with the United States as well as the responsibilities, powers, limitations and obligations of such tribes,” the notice in the Federal Register states.

View PDF here Indian Entities Recognized and Eligible To Receive Services From the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs