Indian Trust Land

McGirt and Rebuilding Tribal Nations Toolbox

Year

The McGirt decision has changed the legal landscape and created new opportunities for tribal nations starting with the Five Tribes in Eastern Oklahoma and potentially for tribal nations across Indian Country. It also has been the source of confusion, hyperbole, and alarm among some commentators.

The Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development and University of Oklahoma Native Nations Center McGirt Colloquium Toolbox contains a series of briefing papers that explain the ramifications of McGirt in various areas important to tribes and clarify what is and what is not at issue. These briefing papers help affected tribes chart a pathway toward the effective exercise of post-McGirt tribal powers and productive collaboration with state governments. The briefing papers offer ideas and examples of what these processes and outcomes might look like. In particular, they consider at least eight areas through the lens of a tribal government’s responsibilities to its citizens, to other Indians, and to non-Indians on trust lands and fee lands within the external borders of recognized reservations.

We hope these papers will be shared, and the ideas disseminated, in ways that tribal governments and other partners identify as useful for creating dispassionate, helpful guidance to tribes and states in the post-McGirt era.

Resource Type
Citation

McGirt Colloquium Toolbox. 2021. The Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development and University of Oklahoma Native Nations Center. https://sites.google.com/g.harvard.edu/mcgirt-rebuilding-nations/home. The Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development. Retrieved on March 2, 2021.

Mortgage Lending on South Dakota’s Indian Trust Land: Findings from a Survey of Lenders

Year

Since its formation in 2013, the South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition (SDNHOC or “the Coalition”) has brought together a diverse group of more than 75 tribal, state, federal, nonprofit, and private sector stakeholders to identify barriers, share innovative solutions, and leverage resources to create a clear path to homeownership for Native people in South Dakota.1 In 2019, as part of this mission, SDNHOC commissioned two capacity-building needs assessments—one to identify the specific capacity-building needs of housing practitioners and other Coalition members, the other to evaluate the barriers and opportunities for lenders providing mortgage financing on Indian trust land. This document is the second of those reports, the needs assessment for lenders.

Resource Type
Citation

Jorgensen, Miriam and Hope Nation Consulting, LLC. 2018. Mortgage Lending on South Dakota’s Indian Trust Land: Findings from a Survey of Lenders. Kyle, South Dakota: South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition.

The Rise of the First Nations Land Management Regime in Canada: A Critical Analysis

Year

Federal Budget 2018 contains significant investments in the First Nations Land Management regime, including $143.5 million over five years beginning in 2018-19, and $19 million per year ongoing. In December 2018, the First Nations Land Management Act was amended, lowering the voting threshold for ratification and giving First Nations increased flexibility in investing or spending funds generated under the First Nations Land Management Act. As Canada moves towards a strategy of sectoral self-governance —slowly deconstructing the Indian Act rather than negotiating all-encompassing self-governance agreements — the management of reserve lands is becoming a critical component of this model and a supposed means for First Nations to ‘catch up’ to the speed of business and build prosperity for their communities. Though the Land Code may provide First Nations with increased jurisdiction over reserve lands, it does not fundamentally challenge the allocation of land beyond reserves (territory). Also, by opening up reserve lands to the market, it may further contribute to the dispossession of land for First Nations people.

Resource Type
Citation

Jobin, Shalene and Emily Riddle. 2019. The Rise of the First Nations Land Management Regime in Canada. Yellowhead Institute: Toronto, Ontario.

NCAI Forum: Protecting Tribal Lands and Sacred Places: Current Threats Across Indian Country

Year

The latest in NCAI’s ongoing series of virtual events featuring tribal leaders, this forum shares the stories of five tribal nations working to protect their tribal homelands in the face of baseless attacks by the federal government, and discussed how the federal government must recommit to its trust and treaty obligations to all tribal nations in this critical area. Forum panelists included:

  • Cedric Cromwell, Chairman of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe
  • Mark Fox, Chairman of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation
  • Harold Frazier, Chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe
  • Ned Norris, Jr., Chairman of the Tohono O’odham Nation
  • Terry Rambler, Chairman of the San Carlos Apache Tribe
Resource Type
Citation

National Congress of American Indians. "NCAI Forum: Protecting Tribal Lands and Sacred Places: Current Threats Across Indian Country". NCAI. June 29, 2020. Retreived on July 23, 2020 from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_DGzzlgkGo

Saginaw Chippewa Tribal Land Title and Records Office

Year

With the ultimate goal of seeing a time when Native people and nations once again own and manage the land within the boundaries of every reservation as well as those lands that are culturally important to them beyond reservations, the Tribal Land Title and Records Office keeps all records and verifies titles pertaining to the status of trust lands. Having the ability to produce reliable trust land documents and provide clear titles quickly, the Office increases housing options for citizens and enhances their opportunities to secure loans.

Resource Type
Citation

"Tribal Land Title and Records Office". Honoring Nations: 2006 Honoree. Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Cambridge, Massachusetts. 2007. Report.

Permissions

This Honoring Nations report is featured on the Indigenous Governance Database with the permission of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development.

Peterson Zah: Finally We Are Growing Our Own

Producer
The Library Channel
Year

Recorded on March 25, 2010, in this lecture Dr. Peterson Zah discusses the history of Native American education, Navajo education, and his involvement recruiting Native American students to attend college. He also stresses the importance of higher education to the success of Native nations' efforts to rebuild their nations, build robust economies, and achieve self-sufficiency.

People
Native Nations
Resource Type
Citation

Zah, Peterson. "Finally We Are Growing Our Own." The Simon Ortiz and Labriola Center Lecture on Indigenous Land, Culture, and Community, Arizona State University. Tempe, Arizona. March 25, 2010. Presentation. (https://vimeo.com/17524438, accessed September 20, 2016)

An Introduction to Indian Nations in the United States

Year

There are 562 federally recognized Indian Nations (variously called tribes, nations, bands, pueblos, communities, rancherias and native villages) in the United States. Approximately 229 of these ethnically, culturally and linguistically diverse nations are located in Alaska; the rest are located in 33 other states.

The United States Constitution recognizes that Indian Nations are sovereign governments just like Canada and California. The Supreme Court, Congress, U.S. Presidents, and hundreds of treaties have repeatedly reaffirmed that Indian Nations retain their inherent powers of self-government. Treaties and laws have created a fundamental contract between Indian Nations and the United States: Indian Nations ceded millions of acres of land that made the United States what it is today, and in return received, among other guarantees, the right of continued self-government on their own lands.

Resource Type
Citation

"An Introduction to Indian Nations in the United States." National Congress of American Indians. Washington, D.C. 2003. Paper. (http://www.ncai.org/about-tribes/Indians_101.pdf, accessed December 4, 2013)