NIGA Statement on Las Vegas Shooting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 02, 2017

NATIONAL INDIAN GAMING ASSOCIATION STATEMENT ON LAS VEGAS SHOOTING

Las Vegas, NV - October 2, 2017 - The National Indian Gaming Association sends its condolences to those families who lost loved ones and those who were injured in last night's heinous act.  As many of us in the Gaming Industry converge on Las Vegas for the Global Gaming Expo (G2E), we send out our thoughts and prayers to the innocent victims and families affected by this tragedy.

Sadly, as the day has proceeded, we are being made aware of those who have been afflicted.  We were informed that one of our Tribal individuals who attended the concert last night was shot and injured.  We are told that she went into surgery last night and is recovering today.

Throughout this unfathomable event, we have seen firsthand the outstanding work by Law Enforcement and all of the emergency personnel who have come together to assist those affected.  The immediate response of the elected officials and the health care professionals who are still caring for patients is impressive and shows the strength of a community who can overcome a disaster such as this.  We send a special appreciation for our Indian gaming network that took an unofficial count and insured the security of our team so we could reassure our families from across the country of our safety.

Our partners at the American Gaming Association and Reed Expositions have assured us that our safety is of primary concern and we can count on them to continue to monitor this situation as we spend the next few days here to move our industry forward.

Indian Country stands together in mourning the losses of innocent victims and is praying for those who sustained injuries as a result of the unconscionable acts that occurred last night.  May the Creator surround those loved ones left behind and those who will be caring for the wounded.  All of our hearts and spirits have been touched beyond measure by this unfortunate situation.

We encourage you to go to the GoFundMe campaign at gofundme.com - Las Vegas Victims' Fund that has been set up for the victims of the Las Vegas tragedy.  Funds will be used to provide relief and financial support to the victims and families of the tragedy.

Clarification On Recent Media Reports Regarding NIGA’s Participation In The Sports Betting Coalition

To:

From:

Re:

Date:

NIGA Member Tribes

Chairman Ernest L. Stevens, Jr.

Clarification On Recent Media Reports Regarding NIGA’s Participation In The Sports Betting Coalition

August 3rd, 2017

At our most recent NIGA Board Meeting on July 17, 2017, the Board voted to join the AGA’s Coalition on Sports Betting.  By joining this coalition, the Board’s stated intent was to enhance Indian Country’s seat at the table on this important issue.

Various media organizations mischaracterized NIGA’s participation in the coalition as supporting the legalization of sports betting.  I want to clarify that the NIGA Board has not taken a position on the issue of sports betting legalization.  We realize that legalizing any new form of gaming, at any level of government, impacts our Tribal gaming industry’s economic interests. NIGA also realizes that as a national organization, taking a position on a particular form of gaming requires input from all of our Member Tribes.  These types of gaming issues raise provincial concerns unique to each and every tribal government engaged in gaming.  One of the key tenets of NIGA’s decision making under my Chairmanship is an emphasis on consensus building, if not complete unity, on gaming issues.  Despite media mischaracterizations, I was clear in my statement on NIGA’s joining the sports betting coalition.  To emphasize, I stated that “Of chief concern to NIGA is to ensure that tribal interests are protected, particularly avoidance of negative impacts on existing tribal-state compacts and exclusivity clauses, and to ensure that if a new form of gambling is legalized in the United States—that tribal governments be provided an equal opportunity to participate in and regulate the new industry.”

The potential of Sports betting legalization will be a main topic at NIGA’s Mid-Year Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, September 19-21, at the Renaissance Hotel.  The State of New Jersey’s lawsuit against the U.S. and the legality of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 will be heard by the Supreme Court possibly late this year, with a decision sometime in 2018.  At the same time, Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ) has released draft legislation that would repeal PAPSA and allow States and Indian tribes to determine if sports betting should be legal in their jurisdictions.  Congressman Pallone and his staff thoroughly engaged NIGA on this issue prior to releasing their draft legislation and are still open to input from Indian Country.

These developments will be discussed thoroughly at our Mid-Year.  The NIGA Board is scheduled to meet and will once again discuss the sports betting issue.  The Board will receive input from our Regional Board representatives about their views on the debate on the legalization of Sports Betting.  Further, there will be several panel discussions and tribal leader discussions during the Mid-Year Membership meeting and conference.

We hope you can join us in September for these important discussions and we look forward to Indian Country’s input on this important gaming issue.

National Indian Council on Aging (NICOA) is seeking support from Tribal Leaders and Indian Country

Dear Tribal Leader,

The National Indian Council on Aging, Inc. (NICOA) is asking you to invest in our distinguished mission - to advocate for improved comprehensive health, social services and economic wellbeing of American Indian and Alaska Native Elders (AI/ANs). NICOA was founded in 1976 by the National Tribal Chairman's Association, led by the honorable late Wendell Chino, Chairman of the Mescalero Apache Tribe.

Our most treasured resources, American Indian and Alaska Native Elders reside in various locations across the country and represent the immense diversity of the 567 federally recognized tribes. Many of our Elders live on and off Indian lands. The U.S. Census reports that we have an estimated 380,000 Elders age 55 and older. There are needs across the country for aging services and supports for Elders, especially in the remote areas of the country that are the hardest to reach. Elders in the urban and rural lands are seldom provided culturally appropriate support and resources.

NICOA is working to provide Aging Network, services providers, and policy makers with essential information about the service needs of AI/AN Elders across the country through the following initiatives:

·     NICOA is the sponsor of the only National American Indian and Alaskan Native Conference on Aging in the nation. This conference serves as the forum for our Elders to speak and VOICE their concerns to Tribal, State and National leaders. Federal Agency Administrators are also invited to listen and to learn about how to improve access to aging services for AI/AN Elders.
·     The next NICOA conference will he held September 11-14, 2018 in Temecula, CA, celebrating our 22nd Biennial Conference. We expect up to 1,500 Elders to attend. Your Elders will soon be notified of this special upcoming event.
·     NICOA is a member of the National Consortium on Aging Resources for Elders' Equity, a grant funded project through the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS). As part of the project plan, NICOA is creating an online Elder resource directory of aging services called Tribal Footprints which will include all 567 federally recognized Tribes across the country.

This project will fuel our goal to serve as a National Resource and Information Center on AI/AN Aging. Your help will make this happen. Elders need our help to navigate resources and services, because healthy Elders are happy Elders.

NICOA is grant funded for much of our work, but for us to effectively advocate on behalf of our Elders, we must truly understand their needs by meeting with them directly. We are working with the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) to support our collective work through their Elder Subcommittee and to ensure that NCAI is aware of the needs of our Elders across Indian Country.

We respectfully ask for your donation to the National Indian Council on Aging, Inc. Help us to grow and nourish our ability to advocate for improved services and supports for our Elders.

contact us for a donation form, for your investment in the health, security, and wellbeing of Elders. Our Elders are valued by all our Nations. Please support them by donating to NICOA's mission.

Sincerely,

James DeLaCruz
Chairman
(Member of the Quinault Nation)

For More Information please contact: James DeLaCruz, NICOA Board Chairman
Or
Randella Bluehouse, Executive Director
at
National Indian Council on Aging, Inc.
One Executive Center
8500 Menaul Blvd. NE, Suite B-470
Albuquerque, NM 87112
Phone: 505-292-2001
Email: rbluehouse@nicoa.org

National Indian Council on Aging (NICOA) is seeking support from Tribal Leaders and Indian Country to advocate for Senior Program Funding in the FY 18 Budget

With the White House budget submission of 5-23-17 many historic cuts and elimination of programs and services for older adults have been proposed.  NICOA is asking that all of Indian Country come together to educate and advocate at the Congressional level on their behalf to make certain that funds are restored as Congress develops their own version of the FY 18 Budget.

Some of the critical programs that need to remain are as follows…

  • Medicaid – Nearly 7 million low-income seniors rely on Medicaid for their health and long-term care.  There is already an impending $839 billion cut to this program through the American Health Care Act. 
  • Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) – Provides a part-time employment opportunity to work 20 hours per week at $10.30/hour.  This income helps supplement many impoverished Native American Elders and provides for their basic needs for food, shelter and clothing to met.
  • Medicare State Health Insurance Assistance Program –Supports 15,000 counselors who provide free assistance to elders through Tribal Area Agencies on Aging.
  • Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program – Assists Low-income Elders in paying their heating and cooling costs in critical weather.
  • Block Grants – Funding to improve economic security and independence for low-income families and seniors.  Services like home care, congregate and home delivered meals, transportation and protective services.
  • Senior Corps and AmeriCorps – Programs that enlist Older Adults for Volunteerism providing valuable hours of service in communities nation wide.
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – Provides supplemental funding for food for seniors.
  • CDC Falls Prevention – Provides funding for “fall prevention” programs and activities as this is a high risk event for older adults.
  • Chronic Disease Self-Management Education – Provides funding for community based workshops for people with chronic conditions.  90% of older adults have at least one chronic disease and two-thirds have two or more.
  • Older Americans Act and Elder Justice Act – Provides funding for Senior Nutrition, Caregiver Support and Elder Justice services.

For More Information please contact: James DeLaCruz, NICOA Board Chairman
Or
Randella Bluehouse, Executive Director
at
National Indian Council on Aging, Inc.
One Executive Center
8500 Menaul Blvd. NE, Suite B-470
Albuquerque, NM 87112
Phone: 505-292-2001
Email: rbluehouse@nicoa.org

NIGA-NCAI amicus brief in support of their Petition for Rehearing/Rehearing En Banc in New Mexico v. Department of Interior

To:

From:



Re:

Date:

NIGA Member Tribes

Chairman Ernest L. Stevens Jr.
Jason C. Giles, Executive Director
Danielle Her Many Horses, Deputy Executive Director/General Counsel

NIGA-NCAI amicus brief in support of their Petition for Rehearing/Rehearing En Banc in New Mexico v. Department of Interior

June 21, 2017

The National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA), National Congress of American Indians (NCAI), and Tribal Supreme Court Project are working with the Pueblo of Pojoaque to solicit participation by Indian tribes as signatories to a NIGA-NCAI Tribes amicus brief in support of their Petition for Rehearing/Rehearing En Banc in New Mexico v. Department of Interior.  This case involves the question of whether a Tribe has a viable remedy when a State acts in bad faith during tribal-state gaming compact negotiations and asserts sovereign immunity to suit in federal courts when a Tribe seeks compliance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.   A 3-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit held that the Part 291 regulations - promulgated by the Secretary of the Interior in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Seminole Tribe - are not a valid exercise of the Secretary's authority under IGRA.  The Tenth Circuit barred the Secretary from taking any further action on the Pojoaque's request for the issuance of gaming procedures under them.

This case has the potential to negatively impact nearly every Tribal-State Gaming Compact being negotiated or subject to renewal.  The decision by the Tenth Circuit gives each State a decisive advantage in negotiations by ignoring the fact that Congress intended Tribes to have a direct remedy when a State chooses to not negotiate in good faith.  NIGA, NCAI and individual Indian tribes are joining together on an amicus brief. The brief will argue that the Part 291 regulations are a valid exercise of the Secretary's authority under the IGRA and 25 U.S.C. § 9; that the Part 291 regulations are consistent with IGRA and Congress' intent in enacting IGRA; and that without the Part 291 regulations, all tribes whose gaming compacts are subject to negotiation or renewal will be without an effective remedy when a State chooses to not negotiate in good faith, a result Congress did not legislate or intend. The Petition for Rehearing/Rehearing En Banc is due on June 20, 2017, and the Amicus Brief in support is due on June 27, 2017.

For tribes interested in participating as a signatory to the NIGA-NCAI Tribes Amicus Brief, please contact Joel Williams at williams@narf.org. A draft of the Amicus Brief will be available no later than Wednesday, June 21, and will be forwarded upon request.  To join as a signatory, the tribal chairman, designated tribal leader, or tribal attorney must send an email directly to Joel Williams at williams@narf.org which clearly states the intent of the Tribe to join as an amicus party, along with the correct name and spelling of the Tribe as it should appear on the brief.   The DEADLINE to join as a signatory on the NIGA-NCAI Tribes Amicus Brief is next Monday, June 26, by 5 p.m. (Eastern).

For further information please contact Jason Giles at 202-548-3810, Danielle Her Many Horses at 202-548-3819, or Joel Williams at 202-785-4166.

Oglala Sioux Tribe to Host the First Annual Great Plains Tribal Leaders' Economic Summit to Promote Governance Strategies for Economic Growth

From the Office of President Scott Weston

Indian nations and tribes were independent sovereigns prior to the formation of the United States, with healthy, vibrant economies, self-sufficient people, and vast territories. Historically, federal Indian policies destroyed our traditional tribal economies, through warfare and the theft of our lands, leaving our people impoverished.

Today, as Indian nations, we must work together to create jobs, revitalize our economies, and promote opportunity and economic self-sufficiency for our people, especially our youth. We need to partner with our neighboring tribes along with the business and nonprofit sectors to explore new markets for our goods and services, to promote education and training for our people to excel in the workforce, and to foster value in Indian country through business skills and hard work.

So, I am pleased to announce that the Oglala Sioux Tribe is convening the First Annual Great Plains Tribal Leaders' Economic Summit in Rapid City, South Dakota from May 8 - 9, 2017 at the Best Western Ramkota Hotel. We have invited Indian nations from throughout the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions to attend our gathering.

The Native Nations Institute at the University of Arizona will provide a forum for dialogue through interactive sessions with economic development experts, Federal agencies, and tribal government, community and business leaders. Tribes from North and South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and Washington are invited to attend this important economic summit. Our summit objectives are:

  • To share examples of innovative governance strategies, best practices, and resources to assist tribal leaders to take the steps necessary to create an environment for successful economic development;
  • To inspire tribal leaders and their economic development teams to explore new approaches to stimulating tribal economies, consistent with cultural contexts; and
  • To provide a forum for tribal leaders in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions to work collaboratively to develop regional economic development strategies.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Center for Indian Country Development at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, and the Bush Foundation are our partners in this historic gathering of tribal government, nonprofit, and business leaders. Please join us for this important event to be part of building a pathway out of poverty for our people.

To register, click here

For more information, visit https://www.minneapolisfed.org/indiancountry.