Good morning, NUNAverse,
These are the top five biggest stories from across Indian Country brought together in once place. In this weekly media clips roundup, take a look back at what our readers were engaging with the most from the past week of news:
A number of tribal leaders were quick to endorse plans released by the Biden administration last week for how the United States can work collaboratively to conserve and restore the lands, waters, and wildlife that support and sustain the nation. The recommendations are contained in the 22-page “Conserving and Restoring America the Beautiful” report, outlining a locally led and voluntary nationwide conservation goal to conserve 30 percent of U.S. lands and waters by 2030 that was submitted to the National Climate Task Force. Among the leaders are Aaron Payment, Chairperson of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe; W. Ron Allen, Tribal Chair and CEO of Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe; Shannon Holsey, President of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians; Cheryl Andres-Maltais, Chairwoman of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head Aqinnah; and Erik Stegman, Executive Director of the Native Americans in Philanthropy.
The Navajo Nation reported on Friday that they have fully vaccinated more than 100,000 individuals of Thursday. The first shipment of Pfzier COVID-19 vaccines arrived on the Navajo Nation on December 14, 2020. Since then, the Navajo Area Indian Health Service worked aggressively with Navajo Nation officials get the vaccines into the arms of Navajo citizens. The Navajo Area Indian Health Service reported that 247,165 total vaccine doses have been received, 225,819 administered, which represents over 91 percent. 100,101 individuals have been fully vaccinated.
The Water & Tribes Initiative is working with members of Congress to pass resolutions that affirm the need to provide clean water to all Native people, and is asking lawmakers to earmark funding for tribal water infrastructure and maintenance in President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan. The text of President Biden’s bill has not been released yet, but the administration has released an overview that includes $111 billion for water infrastructure around the country. The Water & Tribes Initiative said the cost to connect all of the homes in Indian Country to water is likely in the range of $6-10 billion.
Following five tribal consultations between the U.S. Department of Treasury and 85 tribal leaders held in March and April, the Treasury Department has announced the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Tribal Government Allocation Methodology, authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act, which provides $350 billion in emergency relief for tribal, state, and local governments. The rescue plan allocated $20 billion to tribes, with $1 billion being allocated equally among eligible tribal governments and $19 billion divided by the Treasury.
The Bay Mills Indian Community tribal council voted to banish Enbridge’s Line 5 pipelines from the reservation as well as lands and waters of their ceded territory as efforts grow to fight the controversial Michigan project. The resolution, approved by the tribe’s executive council on May 10, comes on the eve of a shutdown order issued by Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer that would terminate Enbridge’s 1953 easement to cross the lakebed under the Straits of Mackinac. According to a statement issued by the tribe, the Treaty of 1836 has reserved the right for tribal citizens to hunt, fish, and gather in ceded territory for all time. This includes the waters of Lake Superior, Huron, and Michigan which comprise the Straits of Mackinac.