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January News Bulletin
Dearest Friends,

Happy New Year! As we embark on 2021, we pause to reflect and thank each of our community leaders for their efforts over the past year. When confronted with complex and unprecedented challenges, leaders within the Alaska Native community consistently chose to develop calm, pragmatic action plans. We chose collaboration over isolation, compassion over hardness, and community welfare before individualism. We chose, in short, our Native values.

The COVID-19 pandemic exposed many systemic weaknesses across essentially every industry, on every scale. Many of our communities still lack critical infrastructures, such as sanitized water and adequate medical facilities. When the pandemic forced essential services to close, such as schools and cargo shipment, Native communities were often disproportionately impacted. Recognizing the fragility of the systems our people rely upon is disheartening—yet, it is also a reminder of the good our organizations can do, and the many ways we can improve our people’s livelihood. 

The new year provides each of us with the opportunity to take stock, reset, and push onwards to our goals. As we each consider the different ways that we may progress, we consider the words shared in the poem "Warming," by the Inupiaq-Inuit poet, Dg Nanouk Okpik.

She and I make a bladder bag to draw water from the ice trench.
She/I chain stitch/es a skin dressed in oil to make a new pot of soup.
She/I sew/s a badger hair rough around the top of her/my kamiks
to make the steps windward, toward the limits of woman.
She/I eat/s club root and white clover to strengthen her/my silver
body to bear a child. She/I map/s, following 1 degree from the North
Star and 60 degrees from the end of the earth’s axis on rotation
for Ukpeagvik she/I use/s a small arc of ice, cleaving into parts, reduced
to simple curves fitted with serrated edges of white flesh. She/I mold/s
to the fretted neck of frozen water into a deep urn, made like a rock shelter
or a cavern. She/I construct/s a hole on the surface of a glacier formed by melting particles
of roe and pan reservoir dust from a shelter for the ice worms. Because the earth is
molding, burning, laughing, and purging its crust.

Tsin'aen (Chin'an/Thank You),

Hallie Bissett
ANVCA Executive Director
Highlights of PPP Loan Items in the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act and 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act

December 28, 2020

The Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act (the “PPP2 Act”) is contained in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (“2021 Appropriations Act”), a $900 billion, nearly 5,600-page bill passed by the House and Senate and signed by the President on December 27, 2020.

The PPP2 Act sets aside $284 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”). The PPP2 Act and the 2021 Appropriations Act contain several changes important to PPP borrowers and “new” borrowers. Except as otherwise provided, the PPP2 Act requires the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) to promulgate rules within 10 days of enactment of the law.

This high-level overview is limited to provisions that impact PPP loans and is not a complete outline or summary of the PPP2 Act and 2021 Appropriations Act. Schwabe expects to produce more comprehensive resources in the future, to include the rule making and other guidance from SBA.

Upcoming Events and Opportunities
JANUARY 6: COVID resources for businesses Join the Alaska SBDC Business Advisors each Wednesday at 2:00 pm for the latest updates in news and opportunities (Emergency Loans, Unemployment, etc.) for small businesses. The SBA district office will be joining the webinar to help with SBA related questions.

JANUARY 12: Graduate Programs Virtual Open House (5:30 – 7 p.m.). Alaska Pacific University is hosting a virtual open house highlighting our graduate programs. Participants will learn about financial aid and admissions and can enter breakout rooms on specific subject areas like our MBA program, Master of Counseling Psychology, and Master of Environmental Science. Register here.

JANUARY 12: Relief Bill Overview, COVID-19 Vaccine
Join industry experts to discuss the recent passing of the second COVID-19-related stimulus package as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, and how employers should prepare for the mass distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Our experts are here to answer your questions and will be hosting a live Q&A session at the end of the webinar. If you have a question for our speakers, you can use this form to submit it in advance! Register here.
JANUARY 13: NBC “American Ninja Warrior” competitor and BSNC descendant, Nick Hanson (aka “Eskimo Ninja”) will host a discussion for BSNC shareholders and descendants on mental health and self-care during COVID-19, from 11:30-12:30 p.m. Learn more and register here.

JANUARY 15: Alaska Native Perspectives of an Evolving Arctic Environment | Sarah Aarons - Join AKWorld for this discussion of climate, security, economic opportunity, science, resilience and other implications of a changing Arctic. Whether you are in Florida, California, Alaska, or another state in-between, you have experienced significant weather changes amplified by a rapidly changing Arctic. Come, listen, and join the conversation with two Alaska Native women who have first hand knowledge and understanding of this important issue for Alaska, the United States, and the World.

JANUARY 23: Undergraduate Programs Virtual Open House (12:30 – 2:30 p.m.). Alaska Pacific University’s virtual open house for undergraduate programs will cover financial aid, scholarships, and the admissions process. Participants will hear directly from faculty about the opportunities available in our programs, including the Bachelor’s of Alaska Native Governance. Register here.
January 25: National 8(a) Association Winter Conference Virtual Day On event day, joining us through our virtual entrance will lead you to exciting educational sessions, matched networking opportunities, our exhibitor hall and more! Register here.

JANUARY 27: Anchorage Economic Development Corp. Annual Economic Forecast luncheon This year’s event will be hosted virtually on Zoom with Alaska Public Media. Tickets for investors and the public are on sale now. AEDC is proud to announce this year’s guest speaker will be Sen. Lisa Murkowski. Sen. Murkowski will share her views on the coming year from a federal perspective, with a focus on COVID-19 relief efforts (unemployment, business assistance, Infrastructure investment, etc.), key economic policy initiatives that will affect Alaska, and more! Register here

FEBRUARY 18: Early Honors Program Virtual Open House (5:30 – 7 p.m.). Alaska Pacific University offers a unique program for high school students in Anchorage. As part of Early Honors, students can earn credits toward both high school graduation and an eventual college degree. Tailored to juniors and seniors in high school, Early Honors students can earn up to 36 college credits a year and learn how to navigate university life. At our open house, you’ll learn more about the program and ask questions of current Early Honors students and faculty. Register here.
As a proud, longtime sponsor of Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis (AWAIC), ConocoPhillips Alaska ended 2020 with a $50,000 gift in support of the shelter’s general services. AWAIC maintains a 24-hour shelter where victims of domestic violence and their children may seek help any time they are in danger. AWAIC’s 52 beds are the only available emergency domestic violence shelter beds in our community.

Due to pandemic-related challenges and requirements that organizations in our community are facing, ConocoPhillips Alaska employees wanted to award a holiday gift to an organization in our community that has made and continues to make significant positive impacts for the clients served.

This gift comes on the heels of a $100,000 gift ConocoPhillips Alaska made to AWAIC in October to support the much-needed Safe Spaces Expansion Project. The expansion will increase the number of shelter beds by 15.

Please visit ConocoPhillips Alaska’s Community Investment webpage to learn more about our community engagement efforts. If you have any direct questions, please contact Jennifer M. Rose [].
Job Openings
Alaska Pacific University | Chief Advancement Officer: This position advises the President on all matters pertaining to the University’s fundraising strategy and the management of the Advancement operations, including Alumni Relations. This position is responsible for daily oversight and administration of fundraising including: major, principal, and planned gifts; endowments; prospect research; foundation, corporate and donor relations; and specific campaign efforts. The CAO manages a team of development and support staff to achieve fundraising goals. Learn more.
Alaska Pacific University | Compliance/Risk Officer: This position provides leadership, direction, and integration of compliance and risk assessment/reduction activities. Responsibilities include developing training programs, managing emergency and risk management protocols, and reviewing policies and contracts to meet university needs and state and federal regulations. Risk assessment encompasses a broad perspective across campus that involves the safety of students, employees and visitors. Learn more.

Land Manager: Choggiung Limited is accepting applications for the position of Land Manager. The Land Resource Manager conducts the management of all Choggiung Land programs through the development and adherence to the Choggiung Land Policy. This position works with many land stakeholders to responsibly manage our land and resources with generational vision. The Land Manager recruits, hires, and leads seasonal teams for our Land Use Program, Moose Habitat Improvement contract, and other programs that may occur from time to time. The Land Manager is able to work with people from many walks of life with professionalism. Works closely with CEO and appropriate Board members on planning issues. Read more here.
Political News
DECEMBER 7: The Trump administration announces its intent to appoint Crawford Ahkivgak Patkotak to the United States Arctic Research Commission, a panel designed to advise the President on arctic research. Mr. Patkotak is the board chair and vice president of shareholder engagement for ASRC, in addition to serving on the North Slope Borough Assembly, and as vice-chair of the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission. Read more here

DECEMBER 17: President-elect Joe Biden selects Rep. Deb Haaland to lead the Department of the Interior. Representative Haaland will be the first Native American to hold a position as cabinet secretary. Political commentators have noted that the appointment of Haaland signals a political shift, granting greater representation to Native Americans who are often disproportionately affected by polluted lands. Following the announcement of her appointment, Rep. Haaland shared, “A voice like mine has never been a Cabinet secretary or at the head of the Department of Interior...I’ll be fierce for all of us, our planet, and all of our protected land.”

Our heartfelt congratulations go to Rep. Haaland and our thanks for her service to that Native community. Read more here

DECEMBER 23: SULLIVAN-SCHATZ-CANTWELL BILL TO STRENGTHEN, IMPROVE NOAA CORPS SIGNED INTO LAW WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Senators Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) today welcomed the signing of S. 2981, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Commissioned Officer Corps Amendments Act of 2020, their bill to improve and modernize the management of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps. Read more here.

DECEMBER 28: The Bureau of Land Management opens the application period for Alaska Native Vietnam Veterans (serving between 1964-71) who never received their Federal Land allotment. Qualified Natives or their legal heirs may apply for their lands until December 29, 2024. Read more on this story.

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) applauded a year-end omnibus bill being signed into law, which includes a 12-bill appropriations package to fund the government through the end of Fiscal Year 2021, including Senator Murkowski’s Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriations bill. This historic funding package also provides nearly $900 billion for COVID-19 relief; Senator Murkowski’s bipartisan, bicameral Energy Act of 2020; a bipartisan compromise to address the issue of Surprise Medical Billing; a major tax extenders package, and more. Read more here

DECEMBER 30: The Indian Community and Economic Enhancement Act of 2019 is signed into law. A significant legislative goal for all Native communities, was Sponsored by Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Chairman John Hoeven (R-ND) and Representative Norma Torres (D-CA) in the House. Read more here.

Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, and Congressman Don Young, all R-Alaska, today issued the following statements after the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced the release of an updated Integrated Activity Plan (IAP) for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A). Read more here.

December: Our Community in Review
DECEMBER 8: Alaska Business Monthly reports the toll COVID-19 has exerted on Alaska’s economy, reporting an estimated 7% loss in overall GDP, and the loss of approximately 37,600 jobs. Read more about the state of our economy here.

DECEMBER 14: BSNC’s subsidiary, Alaska Industrial Hardware (AIH) has purchased the vacant Sam’s Club warehouse building located on Anchorage’s Dimond Blvd. The storefront, scheduled to open in spring 2021, will be Alaska’s first retail, order fulfillment, and replenishment center for construction and building hardware. BSNC shareholders who shop with AIH will receive a discount! 

DECEMBER 18: New Administration’s Prioritization of Native Contracting Could Mean More Economic Development Opportunities for Native-Owned Businesses
Native-owned businesses—particularly those owned by Tribes, Alaska Native Corporations (ANCs), and Native Hawaiian Organizations (NHOs)—seeking to take advantage of economic opportunities presented by the new administration should take note of the following objectives of the Plan for Tribal Nations: Provide Native-owned small businesses and other small businesses with an ambitious “restart package” to survive the current economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Increase access to capital for Native-owned businesses by: Creating a Small Business Opportunity Fund that leverages more than $150 billion in new capital and opportunities for Native businesses and other minority-owned small businesses. This fund is intended to spur more than $50 billion in additional public-private venture capital funds by dedicating funding to entrepreneurs who create jobs and growth in lower-income areas, including tribal areas, with an emphasis on reaching businesses owned by Native people and other people of color. Tasking the Treasury Department with supporting Native community participation in the New Markets Tax Credit program and expanding access to $100 billion in low-interest business loans to small businesses, including those owned by Native entrepreneurs, by extending state, local, tribal, and nonprofit lending programs with $20 billion in new capital. Read more here.

DECEMBER 18: State releases final draft CARES Act spending plan for fishery participants - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game released the final draft of their spending plan for $50 million that the state will receive for distribution to fishery users as part of the CARES Act on Wednesday. Read more here.
DECEMBER 18: In historic pick, Biden taps Haaland as interior secretary
President-elect Joe Biden selected New Mexico Rep. Deb Haaland as his nominee for interior secretary on Thursday, a historic pick that would make her the first Native American to lead the powerful federal agency that has wielded influence over the nation’s tribes for generations. Tribal leaders and activists around the country, along with many Democratic figures, cheered Haaland’s selection after urging Biden for weeks to choose her to lead the Department of Interior. They stood behind her candidacy even when concerns that Democrats might risk their majority in the House if Haaland yielded her seat in Congress appeared to threaten her nomination. With Haaland’s nomination, Indigenous people will for the first time in their lifetimes see a Native American at the table where the highest decisions are made — and so will everyone else, said OJ Semans, a Rosebud Sioux vote activist who was in Georgia on Thursday helping get out the Native vote for two Senate runoffs. “It’s made people aware that Indians still exist,” he said. Haaland, 60, is a member of the Pueblo of Laguna and, as she likes to say, a 35th-generation resident of New Mexico. The role of interior secretary would put her in charge of an agency that has tremendous sway not only over the nearly 600 federally recognized tribes, but also over much of the nation’s vast public lands, waterways, wildlife, national parks and mineral wealth. Haaland tweeted after the news was made public that “growing up in my mother’s Pueblo household made me fierce. “I’ll be fierce for all of us, our planet, and all of our protected land,” Read more here. NOTEThe Washington Post also reports. 

DECEMBER 21: Clara Pratte of the Navajo Nation wins UCLA’s Environmental Genius Award for innovators under 40. The founder of Strongbow Strategies and an advocate for Tribal economic development sovereignty, Pratte specializes in assisting clients with business and technical issues, such as cyber-security and emergency management. Read more here

DECEMBER 22: December 2020 Year in Review: Pandemic upends Alaskan economy - The State of Alaska received about $1.5 billion in federal aid to mitigate the impact of the pandemic after Congress quickly passed the $2.2 trillion CARES Act in late March, but getting the money allocated and dispersed via multiple levels of government proved to be a slower process. State lawmakers who’d adjourned from the spring session because of the pandemic had the Legislative Budget and Audit Committee largely approve Dunleavy’s plan for the CARES Act money in their stead during a mid-May meeting. The Budget and Audit approval sparked a lawsuit from former University of Alaska regent and public interest advocate Eric Forrer, in which he and attorney Joe Geldhof argued the full Legislature needed to convene and appropriate the money. Legislators ultimately gathered in Juneau and approved the administration’s plan May 19, just six days after the suit was filed in state court. Rollout of AK CARES, the state’s primary small business aid program, was slower than anticipated as hang-ups in the application and review process delayed disbursements. Read more here.

DECEMBER 21: Project Togo gets underway with nearly three times as many COVID-19 vaccine doses as expected for Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta
Nearly 3,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Bethel on Wednesday. That was a welcome surprise: It was nearly three times as many doses as the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation expected. Public health officials said that will speed up distribution of the vaccine. On Thursday, YKHC began COVID-19 vaccinations of front-line health care workers in Bethel as well as residents and staff of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Elders Home in Bethel. They’re part of phase 1a in the vaccine schedule. Phase 1b is expected to include essential workers, people with high-risk medical conditions and adults over 65 years old, though the state’s Vaccine Allocation Committee needs to sign off on the plan. YKHC said in a press release that the extra doses will let them start phase 1b “much sooner than anticipated.” KYUK was at the Bethel airport when the night jet arrived with one of the shipments. One of those passengers is Connie Sankwich was there, waiting to fly out. She said that she’s ready to take the vaccine as soon as possible. Read more here.

DECEMBER 30: Several Alaska businesses form ‘Conquer COVID Coalition’ to fight together against COVID-19 challenges
A diverse group of businesses, health care organizations and Alaska Native corporations are joining forces to help sustain the fight against COVID-19. Although the arrival of the vaccine in Alaska has provided a bit of hope, the Conquer COVID Coalition launched a campaign Tuesday to encourage people to not get complacent with the virus, and to provide information and education to individuals as well as resources for businesses. “Lucky Wishbone joined because the sooner we take care of this pandemic, the sooner we can fully open all of our businesses,” Lucky Wishbone co-owner Heidi Heinrich said. “Schools will be back in session, our customers can come in and sit down and feel safe and eat their favorite meal ... To be a part of the solution is very important.” The coalition includes small businesses like Lucky Wishbone up to large corporations including GCI and multiple Native regional corporations. Jared Kosin, president and CEO of Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association, says that even though each sector is impacted in different ways by the virus, overcoming the pandemic is the first step in a full economic recovery. Read more here.

DECEMBER 30:The pandemic relief bill will provide much-needed help for Alaska businesses. The money is expected to go quickly.
The new, $900 billion COVID-19 aid package will provide much-needed help for small businesses in Alaska with a new round of funds from the popular Paycheck Protection Program, plus extra support for restaurants, breweries, bars and hotels that were hit hard after tourism collapsed this summer and local governments instituted restrictions to slow the spread of the virus. Nationwide, the new stimulus bill — the follow-up to the giant CARES Act passed in March — will provide close to $300 billion of the forgivable PPP loans that helped keep businesses afloat earlier this year. The program so far has delivered $1.3 billion to about 12,000 Alaska businesses, helping them cover employee paychecks, rent and other costs. Business owners in Alaska say the additional help is coming at a critical time. They face a bleak winter, typically the slowest time of the year for many of them. Restaurants are recovering from rounds of restrictions, including the latest in Anchorage that closed indoor dining this month, said Matt Gill, co-owner of Ginger restaurant in downtown Anchorage. Read more here.

JANUARY 4: LAW360 published "Native American Cases To Watch In 2020"
Around the Country - The federal government is asking the Supreme Court to find Alaska Native corporations eligible for coronavirus relief. The D.C. Circuit is set to rule on whether the Indian Health Service must pay contract support costs to the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community on income from insurers such as Medicare and Medicaid. The Cherokee Nation is engaged in a discovery battle with pharmacies and drug distributors in the tribe's bellwether opioid suit remanded from the MDL to Oklahoma federal court. Many tribes have joined the ongoing MDL accusing Juul and Altria of unleashing a youth vaping epidemic. The First Circuit may be leaning toward the Penobscot Nation in its claim to the waters of its namesake river in Maine. The Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation is challenging a U.S. Department of the Interior ruling handing rights over a stretch of the Missouri River riverbed to North Dakota. And the en banc Fifth Circuit has spent nearly a year weighing the Indian Child Welfare Act's constitutionality.

ANVCA Sponsors
Thank you to our Moose Sponsors!

The moose is a critical Partner to ANVCA. We rely on large corporate partners for viability the organization. This level of Partnership is designed for committed Partners who value their relationships with Alaska Native Village Corporations or looking to build new relationships. Building moose level Partnerships will allow ANVCA to expand services and projects for the long term economic benefit of Alaska Native Village Corporations.
Thank you to our Salmon Sponsors

The salmon is the Partner we depend on annually at ANCVA. This Partnership level designed for mid to large size Partners who can commit financially to ensure that ANVCA has the resources to maintain and improve services to Members and Partners. Salmon level Partnerships allow the organization to thrive.
Thank you to our Caribou Sponsors!

The caribou is a key player in the sustainability of ANVCA. These Partners include mid-size and local businesses or organizations who treasure contacts within ANVCA. Caribou level Partners are vital to projects and programming for Members and Partners.
Thank you to our Denali Village Corp Members!
This level of membership is suggested for Alaska Native Village Corporations whose annual revenues exceed $50 million and/or those that highly support the value of the organization for the opportunities, education and advocacy it provides to Village Corporations.
To view our full list of sponsor organizations or learn more about becoming a sponsor please visit our ANVCA sponsor page.
Newsletter developed by WALSH|SHEPPARD