Osiyo, relatives.

A lot of news out there. Thanks for stopping by Indian Country Today’s digital platform.

Each day we do our best to gather the latest news for you. Remember to scroll to the bottom to see what’s popping out to us on social media and what we’re reading.

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Can ANCSA answer, ‘Where are you from?’

In part 1 of a 3-part series on Alaska Native identity, ICT's Meghan Sullivan reports on just how complicated it can be.

The series is part of Indian Country Today’s project on the 50th anniversary of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

When the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act passed into law in 1971, it was intended to settle Indigenous claims to land and resources, such as fish, game and oil. Some at the time viewed it as an attempted termination bill. Others say the legislation was not created to take the place of tribes, and no part of it was designed with the intention of creating another organization to designate who was considered Alaska Native — such as a certificate of degree of Indian blood card or tribal enrollment might... READ more

(Related: Cheat sheet: Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act 101)

(Related: The modern treaty: protecting Alaska Native land, values)

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NAGPRA consultation planned

The Interior Department will conduct consultations with tribal and Native Hawaiian community leaders as part of an ongoing review to update Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act regulations.

The interior made the announcement on Thursday.

NAGPRA provides a systematic process for the disposition and repatriation of Native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects and objects of cultural patrimony back to lineal descendants, Indian Tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations.

“Changes to NAGPRA regulations are long overdue,” Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said. “It is crucial that as we consider changes, we consult with Tribes and Native Hawaiian communities at each step. I’m hopeful this process will eliminate unnecessary burdens to the repatriation process and allow Indigenous peoples greater access to their ancestors’ remains and sacred items.”

Racial justice panel in Kansas issues recommendations

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas racial justice panel appointed by Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly has recommended expanding Medicaid, adding another income tax bracket for top-income earners, restoring a food sales tax rebate and banning Native American mascots and team names in public schools.

The 15-member Commission on Racial Justice and Equity created the recommendations after meeting with Kansas Department of Commerce officials, Kansas Department of Health and Environment staff and others, according to the report. Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly established the commission last year in response to the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

The report comes months after the panel crafted recommendations primarily focused on policing... READ more.

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Child tax credit dollars head to parents

Some 15 million households will now receive the full child tax credit.

The monthly payments amount to $300 for each child who is 5 and younger and $250 for those between 5 and 17. The payments are set to lapse after a year, but President Joe Biden is pushing to extend them through at least 2025.

The president ultimately would like to make the payments permanent — and that makes this first round of payments a test as to whether the government can improve the lives of families... READ more.

Minnesota’s first MMIW office to open

The state passed its COVID-19 Recovery Budget that included public safety measures such as setting up their first physical office to be devoted to the missing and murdered Indigenous women movement.

On July 1, as part of Minnesota’s COVID-19 Recovery Budget, a Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives office was confirmed to be established.

The budget is $1 million biennium and will hire four full-time staff. It will be located within the Department of Public Safety in St. Paul, Minnesota. The name change from MMIW to “Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives Office” is to include the two spirit community... READ more.

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Native-owned restaurant to appear on national TV

Watecha Bowl, a Native American restaurant in South Dakota, and owned by a Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe citizen, is set to be featured on ABC's "Good Morning America."

The restaurant will be part of a report on South Dakota businesses that operated through the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Sioux Falls Business.

The segment will air on July 20.

Watecha Bowl started as a food truck in 2020 and expanded to a restaurant earlier this year. A second Sioux Falls location is in the works, as well as an expansion to Rapid City, according to the media report.

#ICYMI

The Palms Casino Resort is located west of the Las Vegas Strip. (Photo courtesy of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians)

Las Vegas feels tribal presence

Native nations doing business in Las Vegas. That’s soon expected to be the reality.

The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians announced plans in May to acquire the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. After closing its deals, San Manuel will become the second tribal nation to do major business in the entertainment capital of the world.

The Mohegan Tribe operates the Mohegan Sun Casino at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas. It opened in March 2021 and is a casino resort located east of the Strip.

Nevada is also already home to other tribally-owned ventures involving the sale of marijuana. There are five tribes who are sanctioned for marijuana growth and sales in the state... READ more.

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