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Press Release

Committee Considers Legislation Providing Greater Land Autonomy to Tribes

  • IP Subcommittee

Today, the Subcommittee on Indian and Insular Affairs held a legislative hearing on three bills focused on various solutions related to tribal land ownership issues, codifying language from the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) regarding processing mortgages on Indian trust land and the reauthorization of the Udall Foundation. Subcommittee Chair Harriet Hageman (R-Wyo.) released the following statement in response:

“The three bills addressed today by our committee are common sense legislative solutions to specific issues facing tribal communities. Economic development, individual development, and home ownership opportunities are currently far too limited, far too regulated, and take far too long to be approved. Any opportunities to advance self-sufficiency and greater freedom to improve economic and educational outcomes for our native populations should be met with support and encouragement from Congress and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.”


H.R. 929 would place approximately 17 acres of land owned in fee by the Puyallup Tribe of Indians into trust for the benefit of the tribe.

H.R. 2882 would reauthorize the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation through 2028. The foundation has several programs that provide Native American students with internships and fellowships and as well as research and policy guidance related to natural resources and public lands.

H.R. 3579 would require the BIA to process and complete residential and business mortgage packages on Indian trust land within 20 or 30 days, depending on the type of application. The legislation would codify current deadlines in the BIA Mortgage Handbook and more closely align the BIA’s processing of mortgage packages with current mortgage industry practices.

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