Senate Committee on Indian Affairs plans business meeting and hearing

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Lisa Murkowski and Brian Schatz

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), left, and Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) are vice chairs and chairs, respectively, of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. Photo: SCIA

Senate Committee on Indian Affairs plans business meeting and hearing

Monday 14 November 2022

Indianz.Com

Senate Indian Affairs Committee resumes work after lengthy absence. The legislative body responsible for Indian affairs will hold a business meeting and legislative hearing on Wednesday afternoon. It is the committee’s first meeting in the country’s capital since a round table on Sept. 21 almost two months ago and since a hiatus ahead of last week’s elections. Four items are on the agenda of the business meeting. Notably, three of them deal with tribal water issues in Arizona, where Sen. Mark Kelly (D-Arizona) just won re-election and ensures Democratic control of the US Senate in the next legislative session. The following bills will be discussed at the business meeting: • S.3168 amending the White Mountain Apache Tribe Water Rights Quantification Act of 2010. The bill will ensure that the White Mountain Apache Tribe can use their already enacted water rights agreement to complete a water project on the Fort Apache Reservation in the state of Arizona. A hearing was held on March 23.

• S.3308, the Colorado River Indian Tribes Water Resiliency Act of 2021. The bill ensures that the Colorado River Indian Tribes can use their previously ratified Colorado River water rights by leasing or assigning them to other Arizona entities. A hearing was held on March 23.

• S.4104, the Hualapai Tribe Water Rights Settlement Act of 2022. The bill ratifies a water rights agreement between the Haulapai Tribe, the State of Arizona and the federal government. A hearing was held on July 20.

• S.____, An initial bill amending the Not Invisible Act of 2019 to expand and provide additional support to the activities of the Departments of the Interior and the Department of Justice in connection with the Joint Commission to Reduce Violent Crimes Against Native Americans. The Not Invisible Act was enacted to address the high levels of violence against Native Americans and Alaska Natives, including the missing and murdered crisis. The invoice number is not yet available. The business session is immediately followed by the legislative hearing. The agenda includes three items, all addressing water issues for western tribes: • S.4870, Tule River Tribe Reserved Water Rights Settlement Act of 2022. The bill ratifies a water regulation involving the Tule River Tribe and the federal government are involved. • S.4896, the Pueblos of Jemez and Zia Water Rights Settlement Act of 2022. The bill ratifies a water settlement involving the Jemez Pueblo, the Zia Pueblo, the State of New Mexico, the federal government and non-Indian parties . • S.4898, the Pueblos of Acoma and Laguna Water Rights Settlement Act of 2022. The bill ratifies a water settlement involving the Acoma Pueblo, the Laguna Pueblo, the State of New Mexico, the federal government and non-Indian parties . The business meeting and legislative hearing is scheduled to begin at 2:30 p.m. Eastern in Room 628 of the Senate Dirksen Office Building.

Statement from the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs

Business Meeting to Consider S3168, S3308 and S4104 and Legislative Hearing to Obtain Testimony on S4870, S4896 and S4898 (16 November 2022)

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