Providing current news on Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska's
government, administrative, and program activities.
- AUGUST 2016 -
TRIBAL UPDATE
News in this Edition...
  • U.S. Department of State and EPA Officials Meet with Southeast Tribes on Transboundary Mining
  • 2017 Annual Funding Agreement Negotiations Held
  • Central Council Stands in Unity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in Opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline
  • 2016 Get Out The Native Vote - Southeast Alaska Initiative
  • No Appeal from State of Alaska in Land-into-Trust Case - Huge Win for Alaska Tribes
  • Sudden Federal Budget Cuts Significantly Impact 477 Services
  • Central Council Awarded $185K Under Climate Adaptation Grant
  • 2016 Back to School Fair Held
  • Tribal Foster Care Recruitment
  • Annual Southeast Environmental Conference
  • Motherhood is Sacred™
GOVERNMENT ACTIVITIES
U.S. Department of State and EPA Officials Meet with Southeast Tribes on Transboundary Mining
Senior officials from the United States (US) Department of State and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) met with tribes and the State of Alaska August 9-11, 2016 on transboundary mining activities occurring in Canada. Serious concerns have been raised regarding the impact mining activities have on the headwaters of Southeast Alaska’s four major river systems (Alsek, Taku, Stikine and Unuk), watersheds, and ecosystems. 

During the visit, the Department of State Director of the Office of Canadian Affairs Christopher Sandrolini, Consulate General Vancouver Lynne Platt, EPA Principal Deputy Administrator of the Office of International and Tribal Affairs Jane Nishida, EPA Region 10 Administrator Dennis McLerran, and EPA Director of the American Indian Environmental Office JoAnn Kay Chase participated in discussions focused on areas of mutual interests and collaboration necessary to identify, analyze, remediate, mitigate, and prevent harm to the ecosystem and watersheds of Southeast Alaska’s major rivers.  

Plans were also discussed for direct participation with the Dominion of Canada and the First Nations of the British Columbia (BC) and Yukon Territory provinces through a variety of mechanisms, including a Statement of Cooperation with BC led by Lt. Governor Byron Mallott. Efforts to establish international relations are also being made by Central Council. Strengthening our relationship with Canada’s First Nations will unify our voice and help elevate tribal government relations within their provinces.   

Throughout the discussions, Central Council emphasized there is no opposition to mining projects in Canada or Alaska if appropriately designed, operated, and maintained under a robust regulatory regime. Efforts are underway to identify funding for an ecosystem-wide environmental assessment and adaptation plan to identify a baseline for environmental quality, establish key indicators, and apply appropriate adaptation measures.

Central Council is also working to extend its current collaborative efforts to other Federal agencies such as the US Coast Guard, Forest Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Geological Survey, and Army Corps of Engineering through an innovative framework of inter-agency work groups and self-determination agreements.

For the full press release, please visit: www.ccthita-nsn.gov/info/press.
2017 Annual Funding Agreement Negotiations Held
The 2017 Annual Funding Agreement (AFA) Negotiations were held in Craig, Alaska on August 4, 2016 at the Craig Tribal Hall. Matt Kallappa with the Office of Self-Governance (OSG) led the negotiations along with Keith Kahklen with the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Alaska Regional office. During the meeting, participants reviewed the 2017 Self-Governance Negotiations Guidance, Annual Funding Agreement, Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 President’s Budget, Reprogramming Request, Intertribal Distribution Worksheet, and the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Central Council and the Department of Interior's Office of the Special Trustee. Tribal representatives also received reports from Central Council's management team with a question and answer period.

Through an MOU, Southeast tribes can authorize Central Council to enter into a Self-Governance Compact and Annual Funding Agreement with the federal government to administer programs and services such as Burial Assistance, College Student Assistance, Tribal Enrollment, Forestry/Natural Resources, General Assistance, Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), Job Placement & Training, Johnson-O’Malley, and Realty. Allocation of funding is calculated based on the Intertribal Distribution Worksheet which distributes tribal shares based on population for most programs and services with the exception of the Realty program which allocates funding based on the number of Native allotments in each Compact community. 

2017 Compact Tribes and Tribal Representation:
  • Chilkoot Indian Association (Harriet Brouillette, Tribal Administrator)
  • Craig Tribal Association (Clinton Cook, President; Anna Guthrie, Tribal Administrator; and Millie Schoonover, Tribal Council member).
  • Klawock Cooperative Association (Lawrence Armour, Tribal Administrator; Patty Rowan, Tribal Council member; and Pilar Mas-Aboudara, Tribal Bookkeeper)
  • Organized Village of Kasaan (Paula Peterson, Tribal Administrator and Nannette Scamahorn, Tribal Bookkeeper)
  • Organized Village of Saxman (Sylvia Banie, Tribal Council Vice-President)
  • Wrangell Cooperative Association (Richard Oliver, President and Aaron Angerman, Tribal Administrator)
President Richard Peterson and Chief Operating Officer Corrine Garza will be traveling to Compact communities this fall to meet with tribal councils and further discuss the Intertribal Distribution Worksheet and MOU.

For more information on the 2017 AFA Negotiations, please contact Tribal Operations Executive Assistant Helene Bennett at hbennett@ccthita-nsn.gov, 800.344.1432 ext. 7306, or 907.463.7306.

Central Council Stands in Unity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in Opposition to Dakota Access Pipeline
Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska’s Executive Council unanimously adopted a resolution opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline. As stewards of the air, land, and sea, who have respect for nature and property, Central Council stands in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe who have been peacefully protesting to protect their way of life, water, people, and land.

"As we embark on our own battles over transboundary mining issues, we need to support our brothers and sisters across Indian Country so that we might be able to call on them to do the same for us in the spirit of the Idle No More movement,” said President Richard Peterson.

The Dakota Access Pipeline, LLC has proposed to construct a 1,100 mile pipeline, with a capacity of 570,000 barrels of crude oil per day, to cross the Missouri river immediately above the mouth of the Cannonball River on the Standing Rock Reservation. Although the pipeline will not directly cross an environmentally protected area or federally reserved indigenous land, under current proposals it will pass within half a mile of the Standing Rock Sioux reservation and traverse 209 rivers and creeks. The drilling required for the construction of the pipeline would disturb burial grounds and sacred sites on ancestral treaty lands.

The Dakota Access Pipeline violates Article 2 of the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty which guarantees that the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe shall enjoy the “undisturbed use and occupation” of their permanent homeland.

Central Council also calls upon the Army Corps of Engineers to reject the river crossing permit under Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act and the Secretary of Interior to fully exercise the trust responsibility and ensure that the federal government rejects the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Recent history demonstrates the danger oil and gas pipelines have had on downstream communities, fish, and wildlife. Between 2010-2015, 840,000 gallons of oil was released near Tioga, North Dakota; 51,000 gallons of oil was released into the Yellowstone River upstream from Glendive, Montana, resulting in the shutdown of the community water system for 6,000 residents; and 100,000 gallons of tar sand crude was released in Michigan’s Kalamazoo River.
2016 Get Out The Native Vote - Southeast Alaska Initiative
Have you checked out the new Get Out The Native Vote (GOTNV) – Southeast Alaska Facebook page? GOTNV - Southeast Alaska is a non-partisan effort between Central Council, Sealaska Corporation, Tlingit-Haida Regional Housing Authority (THRHA), SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC), and community volunteers to increase the Southeast Alaska Native voter turnout for the 2016 Election.

Alaska Native people constitute 14% of the statewide population and it is projected that if all Alaska Native people voted, approximately 25% of the electorate at the polls would be Alaska Native. That being said, take the challenge and exercise your right to vote in the 2016 Elections! Don’t forget to also snap a photo of yourself at the polls and use the hashtags #GOTNV, #AKNativeVote, and ‪#‎GOTNVSoutheastAKChallenge!

GOTNV - Southeast Alaska Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/GOTNVSoutheastAlaska
No Appeal from State of Alaska in Land-into-Trust Case - Huge Win for Alaska Tribes
After a decade of litigation, the State of Alaska has announced it will not seek further appeal in the Akiachak Native Community v. State of Alaska. The State’s decision followed a landmark ruling issued in June 2016 by the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit that rejected the State of Alaska’s attempt to block the Department of the Interior (DOI) from taking land into trust to safeguard it for Alaska tribes.

Trust lands are a cornerstone of federal Indian policy and are the key to federal and private sector funding and investment. Given our State’s fiscal challenges, tribal trust land is just one more solution to Alaska’s budget crisis. The ability for Alaska tribes to petition for trust land acquisition maximizes tribal government resources, eligibility for federal programs and services, and fosters economic development. It will help address public safety and child welfare issues, protect historic homelands and cultural sites, and expand funding for services, education, and housing.

Land-into-trust presents a multitude of advantages for the State and Alaska tribes, but overall it’s about tribal self-determination and the right for Alaska tribes to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of trust lands for themselves and their communities.

Central Council’s priority will be to restore the federal protections to land previously lost. The Tribe has submitted a fee-to-trust and reservation proclamation applications for property Central Council holds in fee and lands held in federally restricted status by individual tribal citizens of Central Council. All parcels are located within the historical and cultural area long known as the “Juneau Indian Village” and comprise the parking lot and subsurface of Central Council’s Andrew Hope Building on Willoughby Avenue.

For the full press release, please visit: www.ccthita-nsn.gov/info/press.
PROGRAM ACTIVITIES
Sudden Federal Budget Cuts Significantly Impact 477 Services
Due to sudden Federal budgetary cuts nationwide recently announced by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska’s 477 Employability/General Assistance (EA/GA) program funding has been reduced by 20%. The reduction in funding will severely impact EA/GA client services for the remainder of the year.

Effective immediately, EA/GA will stop all support services and back-to-school clothing vouchers to clients, and freeze all Work experience contracts. The cuts will also affect EA/GA benefits provided to the Tribe’s Higher Education program and other Employment & Training programs.

“Unfortunately, because we received no prior notice, these cuts take place immediately and some services will be temporarily discontinued. Regrettably, the impact will be felt over a 4-month period instead of being spread over the course of a year. I extend my most sincere apologies to all tribal citizens affected by this reduction,” said President Richard Peterson.

The EA/GA program provides financial assistance to eligible Alaska Natives and American Indians for essential needs, which include food, clothing, shelter, and utilities. The program assists clients in becoming self-sufficient utilizing Individual Self-Sufficiency Plans that identify steps to increase independence and obtain employment.

“Central Council is working hard to find a solution to this budgetary shortfall. In the meantime, EA/GA staff will provide clients with alternative resources that may be available to assist in alleviating the effects of this reduction,” said 477 Director William Martin. 
Central Council Awarded $185K Under Climate Adaptation Grant
BIA has awarded Central Council's Native Lands and Resources (NLR) department $181,946 under the Tribal Climate Resilience program. The funding will be used to create a climate change adaptation plan template for the Southeast tribes.

Last year, NLR hosted a Climate Change Adaptation training for Southeast Alaska tribes that provided an introduction to planning for climate change impacts and reviewed the adaptation planning work of Washington tribes. The c limate change adaptation plan template will be based on the climate change priorities identified by the tribes during the training and will be a living document for tribes to use and adjust based on their individual priorities.
2016 Back to School Fair
Central Council's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) department held another successful Back to School Fair on August 13, 2016 to help kick-off the school year for students in Juneau and communities throughout Southeast Alaska. The Back to School program has been an annual event since 2004 and distributed more than 1,400 backpacks with basic school supplies to tribal children this year.

The Back to School Fair was held in two (2) sessions this year due to growing popularity and focused on encouraging students to make healthy choices that affect them as a whole (physically, mentally, and emotionally). A special presentation was provided by John Cryderman with the Juneau Police Department who discussed family values and the importance of staying in school. SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Dental Clinic, AWARE, Inc., and TANF also had resource tables setup at the event.

Gunalchéesh, Háw’aa to First Bank of Alaska and the Juneau Tlingit & Haida Community Council for partnering to make this a successful event for the community and the Southeast region! 
Tribal Foster Care Recruitment
Central Council’s Tribal Family & Youth Services (TFYS) department is recruiting Alaska Natives and American Indians to become foster parents. Currently, the percentage of tribal children in foster care in Southeast Alaska is 66%. There is a great need in Southeast Alaska for culturally appropriate foster care homes for tribal children who are in the legal custody of the State. TFYS strives to provide a culturally competent level of service to tribal children to give them a sense of belonging and acceptance while maintaining cultural connections.

Through a new Title IV-E maintenance agreement with the State of Alaska, TFYS is working on tribal foster care licensing in Juneau. Foster care licensing is not new; however, implementing tribal licensing standards is a new process. TFYS will be hosting regular workshops to better assist families interested in providing foster care. We look forward to identifying potential families while doing what we can to hold up the Native foster families who are currently providing safe, stable, and loving homes. TFYS is eager to expand its recruitment efforts so you can expect to see their staff out in the community actively recruiting you to consider becoming a tribal licensed foster home. 

TFYS is in regular contact with current Native foster homes to provide support, advocacy, education, and cultural activities. If you have questions regarding the TFYS Foster Care program, please contact Lexy Gallant at 800.344.1432 ext. 7167, 907.463.7167 or lgallant@ccthita-nsn.gov.
UPCOMING EVENTS
Southeast Environmental Conference
Date: September 19-23, 2016
Location: Cape Fox Lodge (Ketchikan, AK)

The Southeast Environmental conference brings together Southeast tribes, natural resource professionals, and others to learn about and address regional environmental priorities. This year’s conference will provide participants with information and training on transboundary mining, solid waste, fish consumption rate/water quality, and the State and Tribal Response Program (STRP) workshop.

For more information, please contact Raymond Paddock at 800.344.1432 ext. 7184, 907.463.7184, or  rpaddock@ccthita-nsn.gov.
New Session Dates for Motherhood is Sacred™ Program
Date: Sept. 15 - Dec. 15, 2016 (Every Thursday)
Time: 5:00 PM -7:00 PM
Location: 2nd Floor -  Andrew Hope Building
(320 W. Willloughby Ave. - Juneau, AK)

The Motherhood is Sacred™ program focuses on helping mothers strengthen their families through responsible parenting. Topics that will be explored include choice, wisdom, self-Identity, and relationships.

For more information or to register, please contact Lexy Gallant at 800.344.1432 ext. 7167, 907.463.7167, or lgallant@ccthita-nsn.gov.

  Our Mission
“Preserving our sovereignty, enhancing our economic and cultural resources, and promoting self-sufficiency and self-governance for our citizens through collaboration, service, and advocacy.”