"Indian Reservation Document 1881", Michael Horse (Yaqui, Mescalero, Apache, Zuni)
The following Fort Belknap Position Paper provides a detailed view of the Fort Belknap ARMP (Agricultural Resources Management Plan) as mandated by Public Law 103-177, the American Indian Agricultural Resources Management Act (AIRMA). This document is designed to address a number of issues, including the Fort Belknap Sovereign Land Buy-Back Plan, the intent of Congress with respect to tribal governance of tribal lands, and the need for a tribal developed and tribal managed agricultural resources policy including any and all buy-backs of fractionated lands which would take place under the Cobell settlement. It is also a direct rebuttal to the proposed administration of the Cobell Settlement on behalf of Fort Belknap by the BIA and BIA's regional administrators who are essentially outside parties to what is mandated by law as a sovereign tribal activity. It is the argument of this position paper that any funds disbursed under the Cobell Settlement should be distributed directly to the Fort Belknap tribal government without administrative charges or other diversions of funds on the part of the BIA.
The position paper consists of four parts including an overview of the legal and historical dimensions of AIARMA and the Fort Belknap ARMP, followed by detailed appendices dealing with the subjects of the position paper in a step by step fashion. The position paper itself addresses AIARMA and tribal sovereignty, including the Cobell Settlement. It then goes on to provide a general description of the Fort Belknap Agricultural Resources Management Plan and concludes with several specific reasons explaining why Fort Belknap chooses to exercise its sovereign rights to design and implement its own land buy-back plan.
There are seven appendices which, in order are:
|1.||Excerpts from "The Beginning: Start Up of the Fort Belknap Agriculture Resource Management Plan" as required by Public Law 103-177 Expert Committee Briefing packet, Historical Background & Current Requirements Dec 17, 2010|
|2.||Excerpts from AIARMA HR 1425 Congressional Report Committee on Indian Affairs Report 103-186, November 1993 (Performance of the BIA and the origins of IAC)|
|3.||Excerpt from Barriers to Successful Competition: The Isolation of American Indian Agriculture. A Report to Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs Prepared by Intertribal Agriculture Council, November 1992|
|4.||Indian Agriculture Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow Prepared for the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs by the Intertribal Agriculture Council February 16, 1999|
|5.||Excerpts from "The Beginning: Start Up of the Fort Belknap Agriculture Resource Management Plan" as required by Public Law 103-177 Expert Committee Briefing packet, Fort Belknap ARMP Process, Dec 17, 2010|
|6.||Excerpts from "The Beginning: Phase 3 Completion Report for Fort Belknap Agriculture Resource Management Plan" as required by Public Law 103-177, December 27, 2011|
|7.||The Role of Sovereignty in American Indian Economic Development, Jan 17, 2013|
Fort Belknap Position Paper and Response to the U.S. Department of Interior Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations can be read here: Download PDF
The actual law H. R. 1425 can be read here: Download PDF
The corresponding Code of Federal Regulations 25USC39 can be read here: Download PDF