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Bishop Introduces Tribal Recognition Act of 2017


WASHINGTON, D.C., September 14, 2017 -

On Tuesday, Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) introduced H.R. 3744, the “Tribal Recognition Act of 2017.”  The bill restores the constitutional framework to tribal recognition authorities vested with Congress under Article I. Chairman Bishop issued the following statement:

“The constitutional authority to recognize tribal status is vested with Congress, not the executive. Congress bears the responsibility of fulfilling this solemn role, but instead has ceded this authority to an unaccountable bureaucracy. As a result, the current process is fraught with delays, lacks public transparency and is susceptible to political manipulation by unelected officials. Congress has an obligation to reassert this authority and create a process that is transparent and accountable,. That’s what this bill delivers.

“The process of determining tribal status must certainly rely on the executive for technical and historical expertise, and this bill sets forth those structures and functions. Debate in Congress will be informed by this work, but the ultimate recognition authority will be with Congress.”

Background:

Chairman Bishop introduced similar legislation, H.R. 3764, in the 114th Congress. The Committee held two legislative hearings on the bill in addition to an oversight hearing on the Obama administration’s Part 83 Revisions to regulations that currently govern the recognition process within the Department of the Interior.  

Contact: Committee Press Office 202-226-9019

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