Text: H.R.6525 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (12/15/2010)


111th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 6525


To provide for development of the Former Bennett Freeze Area, to contribute to the rehabilitation of the economic, housing, infrastructure, health, and educational condition of those affected by the former Bennett Freeze, and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

December 15, 2010

Mrs. Kirkpatrick of Arizona introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources, and in addition to the Committee on Financial Services, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To provide for development of the Former Bennett Freeze Area, to contribute to the rehabilitation of the economic, housing, infrastructure, health, and educational condition of those affected by the former Bennett Freeze, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Former Bennett Freeze Area Development Act”.

SEC. 2. Definitions.

In this Act:

(1) ONHIR.—The term “ONHIR” means the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation.

(2) SECRETARY.—The term “Secretary” means the Secretary of the Interior.

(3) TRUST FUND.—The term “Trust Fund” means the Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund established under this Act.

SEC. 3. ONHIR Transition.

(a) Request by tribe; authorized programs.—Upon the request of the Navajo Nation or the Hopi Tribe by tribal resolution, the Commissioner of the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation shall enter into a self-determination contract or contracts with the requesting Indian tribe to plan, conduct, and administer programs, functions, services, or activities (or portion thereof), including construction programs administered by the Commissioner that pertain directly to the requesting Indian tribe. Programs, functions, services, or activities contracted under this subsection shall include administrative functions of the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation that support the delivery of services to Indians, including those administrative activities supportive of, but not included as part of, the service delivery programs described in this subsection that are otherwise contractable. Such administrative functions shall be contractable without regard to the organizational level within the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation that carries out such functions.

(b) Regulations.—The Commissioner shall issue regulations implementing subsection (a) that, to the maximum extent feasible—

(1) parallel the requirements of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 450f); and

(2) reflect the independent agency status of the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation.

SEC. 4. Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund.

(a) Establishment.—There is hereby established in the Treasury of the United States a trust fund to be known as the Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund, which shall consist of the funds appropriated pursuant to subsection (f) of this section and any interest or investment income accrued on such funds.

(b) Secretary as trustee; investment of funds.—The Secretary shall be the trustee of the Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund and shall be responsible for investment of the funds in such Trust Fund. Notwithstanding the foregoing, upon receipt and approval of a plan for the use of those funds consistent with subsection (c), the Secretary shall transfer these funds to the Navajo-Hopi Land Commission Office of the Navajo Nation, or its designee, as trustee.

(c) Availability of funds; purposes.—Funds in the Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund, including any interest or investment accruing thereon, shall be available to the Navajo Nation solely for purposes which will contribute to the continuing rehabilitation and improvement of the economic, housing, infrastructure, health, educational, and social condition of families, and Navajo communities, that have been affected by the former Bennett Freeze.

(d) Deposits to Trust Fund.—The Trust Fund shall consist of—

(1) a set-aside each fiscal year of 0.75 percent of any amounts appropriated for the Operation of Indian Programs budget of the Bureau of Indian Affairs;

(2) a set-aside each fiscal year of 5.0 percent of any amounts appropriated for the Indian Housing Block Grant Program under title I of the Native American Housing and Self-Determination Act of 1996;

(3) a set-aside each fiscal year of 0.75 percent of any amounts appropriated for the Rural Development Program (title III); and

(4) any amounts appropriated, transferred, or credited to the Trust Fund under any provision of law.

(e) Termination of Trust Fund.—The Rehabilitation Trust Fund shall terminate when, upon petition by the Navajo Nation, the Secretary determines that the goals of the Trust Fund have been met. All funds in the Trust Fund on such date shall be transferred to the Treasury.

(f) Authorization of appropriations; reimbursement of General Fund.—There is hereby authorized to be appropriated for the Former Bennett Freeze Area Rehabilitation Trust Fund such sums as may be necessary for each of fiscal years 2011 through 2025.

SEC. 5. Miscellaneous.

(a) Expansion of ONHIR authority.—Section 12 of Public Law 93–531 (25 U.S.C. 640d–11(d)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

“(4) The Commissioner is authorized to carry out a rehabilitation program to redress the effects of Federal development restrictions (commonly referred to as the ‘Bennett Freeze’) in the western portion of the Navajo Reservation. This program shall be limited to housing construction and renovation, infrastructure improvements, and economic development initiatives.

“(5) There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out the program described in paragraph 4.”.

(b) Navajo Rehabilitation Trust Fund.—Section 32 of Public Law 93–531 (25 U.S.C. 640d–30) is amended—

(1) in the first sentence of subsection (f), by striking “and the United States has been reimbursed for funds appropriated under subsection (f) of this section”;

(2) in the first sentence of subsection (g), by striking “1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, and 1994” and all that follows through the final period and inserting “2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.”; and

(3) in subsection (g), by striking the second sentence.

(c) Relocation of households and members.—Section 1 of Public Law 93–531 (25 U.S.C. 640d) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

“(f) The Navajo Nation has the right to negotiate and approve an Accommodation Agreement with the Hopi Tribe for any Navajo head of household residing on Hopi Partitioned Land that has not otherwise entered into an Accommodation Agreement but intends to remain on the Hopi Partitioned Land.”.

(d) Relinquishment of accommodation agreement and eligibility for relocation benefits.—The Navajo-Hopi Land Dispute Settlement Act of 1996 is amended by adding a new section 13 as follows:

“SEC. 13. Relinquishment of accommodation agreement and eligibility for relocation benefits.

“Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, the Settlement Agreement, or the Accommodation Agreement, any Navajo family that has entered into an Accommodation Agreement shall have the right—

“(1) to relinquish that Agreement at any time up until the closure of the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation; and

“(2) after relinquishment under paragraph (1), to receive the full relocation benefits to which the family would otherwise have been entitled had the family not signed the Accommodation Agreement, including relocation housing, counseling, and other services.”.

(e) Appropriations.—There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out the programs set forth in the amendments made by this section. Funds appropriated under this subsection shall be in addition to funds made available for use on the Navajo and Hopi Reservations out of appropriations heretofore or hereafter granted for the benefit, care, or assistance of Indians in general, or made pursuant to other authorizations in effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.