Region 6 Tribal Consultation Call - Tuesday, April 2, 2013, 2:00pm Central

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SUBJECT: EMERGENCIES AND MAJOR DISASTER DECLARATIONS

Telephone Operator:         At this time all participants are in a listen- only mode until the comment portion of the call. If you’d like to provide a comment at that time, please press star then one on your touch tone phone. Today’s conference is being recorded. If you have any objection you may disconnect. Now I’d like to turn the call over to your FEMA Region 6 Tribal Liaison Norma Reyes.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you very much operator. Good afternoon everyone and welcome to the Region 6 Consultation conference call. I want to thank you all for taking the time to call in today to share your input on the implementation of tribal declarations. The purpose of today’s call is to hear from tribal leaders, tribal emergency managers, disaster recovery subject matter experts and other interested tribal members or partners and to capture their thoughts, comments and concerns about FEMA’s implementation of tribal major disaster and emergency declaration. This is just the beginning of the consultation process in the open comment period running through April 22nd 2013. Comments you provide today will be the foundation for the development of the pilot guidance which will be used to create the final regulations.

Now for a few housekeeping notes. We will not be taking a roll call today as the operator has captured a list of the participants on today’s call. As the operator mentioned, this call will be recorded and the record of this meeting will be posted on www.fema.gov/tribal-consultation. FEMA is not soliciting or accepting consensus advice or recommendations on federal laws, regulations or policies during this meeting. Rather the purpose of this meeting is to gather individual input from a diverse group of partners. Today you will hear from Region 6 Regional Administrator Tony Robinson. Mr. Robinson is a career emergency manager with experience working with tribal governments at the local, state and national level. He has over 25 years of experience with FEMA Region 6 as resulted in his appointment as Deputy Regional Administrator in 2012 and now as Regional Administrator. Tony Robinson will be followed by subject matter experts on the Stafford Act, the declaration process, disaster assistance, Individual Assistance, Public Assistance, Hazard Mitigation Assistance and cost share criteria. After a brief description of each agenda topic, the operator will open the line to provide approximately ten minutes for you to provide comments. The operator will then close the line and we will move to the next topic. You may also provide your written comments through the following venues. You can go online at the federal register notice docket IDFEMA-2013-0006. The document number for that is 2013-05391 and you would get online at federalregister.gov/a/2013-05391. You can also go online on the collaboration site at the fema.ideascale.com or you can email us your comments at tribalconsultation@fema.dhs.gov or you can mail it to us at the Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Council Federal Emergency Management Agency, Room 835, 500C Street Southwest, Washington DC 20472-3100. I sent this information to you via email and mail but if you need this information, just give me a call and I’ll provide that to you. Now we will hear from Tony Robinson FEMA Region 6 Regional Administrator.

Tony Robinson:                   Thank you very much Norma and good afternoon everyone. As Norma said, my name is Tony Robinson.

         And on Tuesday January 29th 2013, President Obama signed the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act of 2013 which included a provision amending the Stafford Act to provide federally recognized tribal governments the option to choose whether to make a request directly to the president for a federal emergency or major disaster declaration or to seek Assistance as they did previously under a declaration for a state. The enactment of this provision is a clear demonstration of the importance that tribal leadership and their governments are to our nation. It follows on the president’s commitments to Indian country, strengthens the government to government relationship between FEMA and the federally recognized tribal governments and will enhance the way FEMA supports tribal communities before, during and after disasters.

         We commend the efforts of tribal leadership representatives and their organizations who have made this change a reality. The amendment reflects the FEMA administrators’ three core principals regarding tribal governments. First, federally recognized tribal governments are sovereign governments. The Stafford Act now clearly reflects federally recognized tribal governments’ status as sovereign nations - giving them the same status as states when requesting federal disaster assistance. Two, FEMA has a government to government relationship with federally recognized tribal governments. And three, tribal governments self determine the best way for them to address their disaster needs. The Stafford Act amendment now gives tribal governments the choice to request declarations on their own. The tribal governments are not required to make a request on their own. The tribe may continue to seek Assistance through a state’s request if they choose. The legislation does not require tribal governments to change their relationship with states but states cannot direct tribal governments to make a request on their own or require tribal governments to be included in the state’s request. The tribe makes that determination. This is a substantial change in the Stafford Act. Changing the Stafford Act to recognize tribal sovereignty is just the beginning. Through this consultation process we will hear from you - tribal leaders, tribal emergency managers and disaster recovery subject matter experts - regarding the items FEMA should consider as we develop pilot guidance to implement tribal declarations. We appreciate your participating on today’s call and informing the development of our pilot guidance. Remember, you may also provide your written comments at the federal register, idea scale and the email inbox tribalconsultation@fema.dhs.gov. With that, I’ll turn it back to Norma.

Norma Reyes:                     Our speaker today will describe specific aspects of the program as applied to states and territories. We need your input to modify the requirements to fit tribal government needs. We will now hear a quick overview of the Stafford Act change from Greg Eaton Region 6 Recovery Division Director.

Greg Eaton:                        Thank you Norma and good afternoon. As the regional administrator mentioned, the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act included a provision amending the Stafford Act to provide federally recognized tribal governments the option to choose whether to make a request directly to the US President for a federal emergency or major disaster declaration or to seek Assistance as they did previously under a declaration request by the state. Specifically the amendment permits the chief executive of an affected tribal government to submit a request to the president for a declaration if a major disaster or emergency exists consistent with the requirements listed in the Stafford Act. The amendment allows tribal governments to be eligible to receive Assistance through a state declaration so long as the tribal government does not receive a separate declaration for the same incident. The president has the authority to waive or adjust the cost share for Public Assistance. The amendment specifies that references to any combination of state and local in the Stafford Act should be read to include tribal governments. And in instances of governor or states should be read as to include chief executive tribal governments as appropriate. FEMA is required to consider the unique conditions that affect the general welfare of tribal governments when implementing this new authority.

Norma Reyes:                     Greg Eaton will now provide a quick overview of declarations tribes may request and Assistance that may be made available. We will now hear from Greg Eaton about the declarations and disaster process.

Greg Eaton:                        The Stafford Act Assistance is intended to supplement tribal and local resources. The federal government will only provide supplemental disaster Assistance under the Stafford Act when a state or tribe is overwhelmed and the response to the event is beyond the state or tribe’s capability to respond. Upon receiving a request for a declaration, FEMA assesses the impact of the event and makes a recommendation to the president. The president in his discretion may determine if the situation warrants supplemental Assistance under the Stafford Act and may make the declaration. Tribal governments can request the following types of declaration - emergency declarations. Emergency declarations are to supplement state and local efforts to save and protect lives, property, public health and safety or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe. Major disaster declarations. A major disaster declaration may provide a wider range of federal Assistance programs for individuals and public infrastructure including funds for both emergency and permanent work required as a result of a natural catastrophe or - regardless of cause - a flood, fire or explosion.

         The following are requirements for a declaration request. Requests must be submitted by the chief executive of a federally recognized tribal government. It must be submitted within 30 days of the date of the incident. Within the 30 days of the incident, the chief executive may submit a written request for additional time. Such request must provide the reason for delay. The basis for the request shall be a finding that the disaster is of such severity and magnitude that an effective response is beyond the capabilities of the tribe and that federal Assistance is necessary. The request must also include confirmation that the appropriate action under tribal government law has been taken and the execution of the tribe’s emergency plan has been directed as applicable. An estimate of the amount and severity of damages and losses, stating the impact of the disaster on the public and private sector. Information describing the nature and amount of tribal government resources which have been or will be committed to alleviate the results of the disaster. Preliminary estimates based on a joint FEMA tribal preliminary damage assessment of the types and amount of supplementary federal disaster Assistance needed under the Stafford Act and a certification that the tribe will meet all applicable cost share requirements. If requesting a Hazard Mitigation Grant Program or permanent work under the Public Assistance program, the tribe must have an approved or approvable mitigation plan within 30 days of the declaration. They must comply with the grant administrative requirements. They must have a Public Assistance, Hazard Mitigation Grant Program or other needs Assistance administrative plans. More information on these requirements can be found at www.fema.gov/tribal-consultation. With that, I’ll turn it back to Norma Reyes for comments.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you very much Greg. Operator, we will now open it up for comments first from tribal executives. When you provide your input, if you would please identify your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you’re using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one to ask a question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal for a question. And there are no comment or questions at this time.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you operator. We will now hear an overview of Individual Assistance criteria from Greg Eaton and then open it up for comments from tribal governments. Here’s Greg Eaton.

Greg Eaton:                        Some types of FEMA Assistance that may be available under a major disaster declaration. Individual Assistance - Assistance to individuals and households. The Individual Assistance programs can provide direct housing which provides grants for rental Assistance and or home repairs. This is 100% federally funded. Other needs Assistance which provides grants for replacement of personal property, transportation, medical and dental and funeral expenses. The Stafford Act sets the cost share for other needs Assistance at 75% federal and 25% nonfederal. The Stafford Act does not give the president the authority to waive the other needs Assistance cost share. All other Individual Assistance programs have no cost share.

         Currently when a major disaster request includes Individual Assistance, FEMA uses the following criteria to determine whether federal Assistance is needed. These are the current procedures as developed for states and we need your input to modify these requirements to fit tribal government needs. Concentration of damages - FEMA evaluates the concentration of damages to individuals. High concentrations of damage generally include a greater need for federal Assistance than widespread and scattered damages throughout a state. Trauma - FEMA considers the degree of trauma to communities. Some of the conditions that might be cause for trauma are large numbers of injuries or deaths, large scale disruption of normal community functions and services, emergency needs such as extended or widespread loss of power or water.
Special populations - FEMA considers whether special populations such as low income, the elderly, the unemployed are affected and whether they may have a greater need for assistance. Voluntary agency Assistance - FEMA considers the extent to which voluntary agencies and the state or local programs meet the needs of disaster survivors. Insurance - FEMA considers the amount of insurance coverage because by law federal disaster Assistance cannot duplicate insurance coverage. FEMA is soliciting comments on whether these Individual Assistance factors - concentration of damages, trauma, special populations, voluntary agencies and insurance - are appropriate for FEMA to consider when evaluating a tribal government request for Individual Assistance. FEMA also welcomes comments on whether there are additional factors that may be appropriate for FEMA to consider when evaluating tribal governments’ requests for Individual Assistance. FEMA is also interested to hear what criteria you think should be used to evaluate state request for Individual Assistance. Sandy Recovery Improvement Act also included a provision which directed FEMA to review, update and revise the factors considered when evaluating a state’s request for a major disaster declaration authorizing Individual Assistance. FEMA is required to revise these criteria in order to provide more objective criteria for evaluating the need for Assistance to individuals, clarifying the thresholds for eligibility and to speed a declaration of major disaster or emergency. I will now turn it back to Norma Reyes.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you Greg. Operator, we will now open it up to comments first from tribal executives. When you provide your input, if you would please identify your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you are using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one if you have a comment or a question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal for questions.

         And we’ll take our first question from Tim Zientek.

Tim Zientek:                       Good afternoon. Thank you all for coming and doing this for us. We need to give our input. My question is with the Individual Assistance. Will it make a difference and what impact will it have with the tribes that have tribal members that are not on tribal land and the effect of the damage caused on their property versus effects of tribal housing offered to the tribal member? Is there going to be a difference?

Greg Eaton:                        Tim, good afternoon.

         Oklahoma and the tribes in Oklahoma have different circumstances as we’re talking about tribal jurisdictional areas. So as we work through Individual Assistance declarations in the process, we’re considering Oklahoma and those tribal jurisdictional areas as far as the declaration. As you know, tribal trust properties are typically included in Public Assistance. So an Individual Assistance declaration and how that would impact essentially tribal members is still being evaluated as far as the best way to service Individual Assistance declaration for a tribe.

Norma Reyes:                     And also Tim, this is why we’re doing this call to get your feedback. What do you think it should look like? That’s what we would want to hear from you.

Tim Zientek:                       Well for our government and the way our constitution is written and I can’t speak on behalf of other tribes - but for our tribe, our constitution reaches out to our tribal members wherever they live anywhere in the 48 states. So I’m not sure that how far we can reach with that but I know if the disaster is here or then yes, we need to be able to reach out to our tribal members anywhere they are here in our jurisdictional boundaries. But whether we own the property or whether the tribal member owns the property - because they’re members of our nation and because they are members of our community then I feel - at least my government feels that they should be able to come to us to apply for Individual Assistance the same as the state of Oklahoma does.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you. Any other questions on that or anything else Tim?

Tim Zientek:                       No, I think that’s it.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you. Any other questions?

Telephone Operator:         And we have no further questions.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you operator. We will now hear an overview of Public Assistance criteria from Greg Eaton then open it up for comments from the tribal government. Here’s Greg Eaton.

Greg Eaton:                        Public Assistance. Public Assistance to state, tribal and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster damaged facilities. The Stafford Act sets the cost share of Public Assistance at not less than 75%. The Stafford Act gives the president the authority to waive or adjust the cost share for Public Assistance. Currently when a major disaster request includes Public Assistance, FEMA uses the following criteria to make a recommendation to the president whether Assistance is warranted. These are the current procedures as developed for states. We need your input to modify these requirements to fit tribal government needs. Insurance coverage in force - for state requests, FEMA considers the amount of insurance coverage that is in force or should have been in force as required by law and regulation at the time of the disaster. Hazard Mitigation - FEMA also considers the extent to which state and local government mitigation measures contributed to the reduction of disaster damages for disaster under consideration. Recent multiple disasters - FEMA evaluates the 12 month disaster history to better understand the overall impact on the state or locality. FEMA considers declarations under the Stafford Act as well as declarations made by the governor and the extent to which the state has spent its own funds on those disasters. Programs and other federal assistance. FEMA considers the programs of other federal agencies because at times their programs of Assistance might be more appropriately meet the needs created by the disaster. Local impacts - FEMA evaluates the impact of the disaster at the county and local government level as well as the impact on American Indian, Alaska native tribal government levels. This is because at times there are extraordinary concentrations of damages that might warrant federal Assistance even if the statewide per capita is not met. This is particularly true in situations where critical facilities are involved or where localized per capita impacts might be extremely high. Estimated cost of the Assistance - many of you know that the Public Assistance per capita indicator is at one million minimum. FEMA evaluates the estimated cost of Public Assistance against the statewide population. This provides a sense of proportional impact on those populations of the state.

         For events occurring in fiscal year 13 we use a figure of $1.37 per capita as the indicator that the state is such size it might warrant federal assistance. This number is adjusted annually based on the consumer price index. FEMA has also established a minimum of $1 million in Public Assistance estimated of damages per disaster based on the belief that we can reasonably expect even the least populated states to cover this level of Public Assistance damage. We would like to hear from you whether these factors - localized impacts, insurance coverage in place, Hazard Mitigation, recent multiple disasters, programs of other federal Assistance and the estimated cost of Assistance - are appropriate for the evaluation of tribal governments’ requests for Public Assistance. We would like to hear your thoughts on whether tribal governments’ requests should be evaluated based on damage per capita. We would like to hear your thoughts on whether a tribal government should be expected to cover a level of damage and whether there should be a similar minimum payment threshold for tribal governments as that applied to state request for Public Assistance. FEMA also welcomes comments on whether there are additional factors that may be appropriate for FEMA to consider when evaluating the level of impact and tribal governments’ capacity to respond to and recover from an event for Public Assistance.

         I will now take comments and turn it back to you Norma.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you very much Greg. Operator, we’ll now open it up for comments first from tribal executives. When you provide our input if you’ll please identify your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you’re using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one to ask a question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal.

         And we’ll take our first question from Tim Zientek.

Tim Zientek:                       Yes, this is Tim Zientek again - Citizen Potawatomi Nation. One of the things that I would like to see happen with the guidance is that we adjust the per capita rate being that the tribes are not as large as states and cover as many people as the states does. We need to adjust the per capita per size of area per land than as it would be with the state just like they evaluate the state every year. I feel like we should probably evaluate the tribes as well.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you Tim. Anything else?

Tim Zientek:                       I think that’s it.

Norma Reyes:                     Operator, any other calls?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. We’ll take our next question from James Leclair.

James Leclair:                    Yes, this is James Leclair with the Otoe Missouria Tribe. I basically was going to ask about that same thing. Are we going to try to equal that $1.47 to the $3.47 threshold on that? I think Tim asked that though.

Greg Eaton:                        James, the per capita indicator for Public Assistance is $1.37 and I guess the question would go back to you is what do you think that criteria should be?

James Leclair:                    I think it should equal the states.

Greg Eaton:                        Thank you.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you James. Operator?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. There are no further questions or comments.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you operator. We will now hear a brief overview of Hazard Mitigation Assistance from Sandy Keith Region 6 Deputy Director Mitigation Division then we will open it up for comments from tribal governments. Here’s Sandy Keith.

Sandy Keith:                       Good afternoon. Hazard Mitigation Assistance is Assistance to state, tribal and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations for actions taken to prevent or reduce long term risk to life and property from natural hazards. Total mitigation funding for disaster is based on a percentage of up to 15% of the total obligation for the disaster. The Stafford Act allows the president to contribute up to 75% of the cost of Hazard Mitigation. Let me emphasize however that requesting a Hazard Mitigation Grant Program or permanent work under the Public Assistance program, the tribe must have a FEMA approved or approvable mitigation plan within 30 days of the date of the declaration. FEMA welcomes comments on whether 30 days is an appropriate amount of time of tribal governments to submit an approved or approvable tribal mitigation plan during the pilot program. FEMA also welcomes comments on whether there are circumstances that may prevent tribal governments from submitting a tribal mitigation plan or a request for an extension within this time frame. Thank you.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you very much Sandy. Operator, we will now open it up for comments from tribal executives. First when you provide your input if you could please identify your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you’re using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one to ask your question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal.

         And we have no questions at this time.

Norma Reyes:                     Now that we have heard some background on FEMA’s declaration process, disaster Assistance and the change to the Stafford Act, we will now hear about cost share criteria from Greg Eaton and then open it up for comments from tribal governments. Here is Greg Eaton.

Greg Eaton:                        As previously discussed, the types of disaster Assistance provided under the Stafford Act have nonfederal cost share requirements. The Stafford Act sets the cost share for other needs Assistance at 75% federal and 25% nonfederal. The Stafford Act sets federal cost share for Public Assistance at not less than 75%. The Stafford Act allows the president to contribute up to 75% of the cost of Hazard Mitigation. The president may only adjust the nonfederal share for Public Assistance. The discretion to adjust or waive the nonfederal cost share rests solely with the president. FEMA’s regulations outline the criteria FEMA uses to recommend to the president whether an adjustment to the federal cost share is warranted. Currently FEMA will recommend to the president to adjust the federal cost share from 75% to not more than 90% when actual federal obligations under the Stafford Act meet or exceed $133 per capita of state population. This number is adjusted annually for inflation. In making this recommendation, FEMA may also consider the impact of major disaster declarations in the state during the previous 12 months. FEMA is soliciting comments on whether the per capita threshold used for states would be appropriate for evaluating whether to recommend a cost share adjustment for tribal declarations. FEMA also welcomes comments on what other factors may be appropriate for FEMA to consider when evaluating potential cost share adjustments from tribal declarations.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you very much Greg. Operator, we will now open it up for comments first from tribal executives. When you provide your input if you could please provide your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you’re using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one to ask a question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal for a question.

         We’ll take our first question from James Leclair.

Edward Hara:                     Hello?

Group:                                 Hello.

Edward Hara:                     This is Edward Hara from Otoe Missouria Tribe. I think I pushed the button a little bit too late back time but going back to the amount of with the Otoe Missouria Tribe on our discussion for the emergency management plan within 30 days. I think working within our government we probably need a little bit more than 30 days to put in our FEMA plan and figure out what we’ve lost.

Norma Reyes:                     For your Hazard Mitigation plan?

Edward Hara:                     Yes ma’am.

Norma Reyes:                     Okay. Do you have a timeframe on what you think the amount of time would be?

Edward Hara:                     I think 60 days would be fine but 30 days would be a little bit fast for us.

Group:                                 Thank you.

Norma Reyes:                     Operator, any other questions?

Telephone Operator:         There are no further questions at this time.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you.  Now that we’ve heard some background on FEMA’s Individual Assistance, Public Assistance, cost share and the change to the Stafford Act, we will now move to the part of the agenda where we want to hear from you on the open forum. This is where we ask tribal presidents, governors, chiefs, chairs and other executive members to hear their voices, input and concerns. Operator, we will now open it up to comments first from tribal executives. When you provide your input, please identify your name, title and affiliation before you ask. Operator, can we have those instructions?

Telephone Operator:         Thank you. If you would like to ask a question or have a comment, please signal by pressing star one on your telephone keypad. If you’re using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute function is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Again, press star one to ask a question. We’ll pause for just a moment to allow everyone an opportunity to signal.

Norma Reyes:                     This is basically asking for any input or any comments you want to make at this time on anything regarding the Stafford Act change.

Telephone Operator:         And we’ll go to James Leclair.

James Leclair:                    I will bug you all day.

Norma Reyes:                     No problem.

James Leclair:                    It’s James Leclair with Otoe Missouria Tribe. I wondered about one question that I forgot to ask the guy at the last IMC meeting. Do you guys understand what restricted trust and fee simple lands are on tribal land?

Greg Eaton:                        James, it’s Greg Eaton. I guess I’m the guy.

James Leclair:                    Okay, hello Greg.

Greg Eaton:                        How are you sir?

James Leclair:                    Doing good brother. I was wondering that because we got a problem when it comes to jurisdiction on some of that property when it comes to tribal lands here in Northern Oklahoma. Like one thing is on fee simple, sometimes we don’t have jurisdiction on it and sometimes we do. It depends on the property.

Greg Eaton:                        Right. I think having worked in Oklahoma for the question I guess comes to mind back to you is if we were doing TDA - tribal damage assessments - or there was a declaration, what is the best way to identify the different properties and different tribal properties that would be owned by the tribal government and or individuals?

James Leclair:                    Okay. The reason I’m asking that is because we’re going through an issue right now with our water treatment plant. It is actually not in trust. It’s in fee simple process.

Norma Reyes:                     So what’s the issue that you...

James Leclair:                    Is it still going to - if it’s owned by the tribe and Tim brought it up while ago - if it’s going to be Public Assistance for the tribe, will we still be covered on that even though the land is not in tribal trust.

Greg Eaton:                        It would be simple if you could just describe that a little bit. It would be owned by the tribe and the tribe would be responsible for the maintenance and wellbeing - if you will - for the facility.

James Leclair:                    Yes. Coming from law enforcement, the best way I can explain this and I’ll make it as quick as possible. When HUDD and or granting agencies were going to build something on tribal lands back in the 60’s or 70’s, they required the tribes to put the land into ownership of that property which like say HUDD or through the state or contracting services. So they had moved that into - through resolution - into like the state property where taxes had to be paid. Now after all of these years, all of that property is starting to come out of that process and they’re just moving into fee simple or restricted land and then they’re saying that it has to go back into trust and sometimes BIA is taking up to 10 years to do that. For example, one of the houses that we had a lot of problems with jurisdictionally speaking to the police, the land was not being paid tax on it until it went out of trust. So then that made it fee simple land. So the land - until it comes into outer trust then the back taxes got to be paid. So then the state says we don’t have jurisdiction and the tribe says we don’t have jurisdiction. That’s as simple as I can make it.

Greg Eaton:                        I think this is something that we’re going to need to continue talking about a little bit. But understanding the owner is almost a case by case basis.

James Leclair:                    Okay, okay.

Greg Eaton:                        And I think that’s as simple as I can make it coming back.

Norma Reyes:                     But thank you for bringing that to our attention so we can further research it and see how that’s going to play out. Thank you.

James Leclair:                    Yes, it’s huge in our area Norma because a lot of properties are starting to come out of that - out of fee simple.

Norma Reyes:                     Okay. Okay, thanks James. Anything else? Any other comments?

Telephone Operator:         We have no other comments.

((Crosstalk))

Norma Reyes:                     No more comments?

Telephone Operator:         No, we have no further comments.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you.

Telephone Operator:         You’re welcome.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you all very much for your input and again for joining us today. I would like to conclude this FEMA tribal consultation engagement conference call and turn it over to our regional administrator Tony Robinson for the final remarks. Here’s Tony Robinson.

Tony Robinson:                   Thank you for participating in the Region 6 Consultation Call today and I appreciate the good questions and the things that your brought to our attention such as the restricted trust and fee simple land and also your comments on declaration criteria. It’s very important that through this process you inform us on what are the things we should be considering. So thank you for those comments today. The transcript of this call will be posted on www.fema.gov/tribal-consultation in the next few days. The consultation site also includes important background information on declarations and disaster assistance. We thank you for your time and we look forward to advancing FEMA’s relationship with tribal leaders, emergency managers and disaster recovery subject matter experts. With that I’ll turn it back over to Norma.

Norma Reyes:                     Just a reminder the deadline to provide your input on the implementation of tribal declaration is April 22nd 2013. So do not forget to submit your written comments through the following venues. Again you can at the federal register notice docket which is IDFEMA-2013-0006 document number 2013-05391 and you would access it by going to federalregister.gov/a/2013-05391.

         You can also go to our fema.ideascale.com to provide some comments and then of course our email box is tribalconsultation@fema.dhs.gov. And you can always mail it to Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Council, Special Emergency Management Agency, Room 835, 500 C Street Southwest, Washington, DC.

         If you need this information just call me or email me and I can provide you the different avenues you can provide your input. Operator?

Telephone Operator:         This does conclude today’s conference call. Thank you for your participation. You may disconnect your lines at this time.

Norma Reyes:                     Thank you.

END

Last Updated: 
07/24/2014 - 16:00
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