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                                                       Calendar No. 926
110th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session                                                     110-435

======================================================================



 
HONORING THE ACHIEVEMENTS AND CONTRIBUTIONS OF NATIVE AMERICANS TO THE 
                 UNITED STATES, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

                                _______
                                

                 July 31, 2008.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

    Mr. Dorgan, from the Committee on Indian Affairs, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                      [To accompany H.J. Res. 62]

    The Committee on Indian Affairs, to which was referred the 
joint resolution (H.J. Res. 62) to honor the achievements and 
contributions of Native Americans to the United States, and for 
other purposes, having considered the same, reports favorably 
thereon with an amendment in the nature of a substitute and 
recommends that the joint resolution (as amended) do pass.

                                PURPOSE

    The Purpose of H.J. Res. 62 is to designate Friday, 
November 28, 2008, as ``Native American Heritage Day,'' and to 
encourage the people of the United States, as well as Federal, 
State, and local governments, and interested groups and 
organizations to observe Native American Heritage Day.

                               BACKGROUND

    As the descendents of the original, indigenous inhabitants 
of what is now the United States, Native Americans have 
provided contributions to the political, economic and cultural 
development of the United States. Numerous contributions have 
been offered in civilian life. In addition, Native Americans 
have consistently served with distinction in the Armed Forces 
of the United States since the Revolutionary War. More Native 
Americans per capita have served in the Armed Forces than any 
other group of Americans. Designation of November 28, 2008 as 
Native American Heritage Day would allow an opportunity to 
recognize these contributions.
    According to the Department of the Interior, Bureau of 
Indian Affairs, designation of a National American Indian and 
Alaska Native Heritage Month has been a century-long effort, 
traditionally occurring in the month of November. The 
recognition has occurred in the past through several non-Indian 
and Indian organizations. In 1990, President George W. Bush 
signed a proclamation naming November 1990 as Native American 
Heritage Month. Similar proclamations have occurred annually 
under Presidents William J. Clinton and George H. W. Bush since 
1994.
    There have been legislative efforts to designate a specific 
day as Native American Heritage Day, but none have succeeded. 
Although several states have designated a Native American 
Heritage Day since 1916, there has been no similar designation 
by the Federal government.
    H.J. Res. 62 designates November 28, 2008, as ``Native 
American Heritage Day'' and encourages educational outreach in 
elementary and secondary schools to honor the past and present 
contributions of Native Americans. It is hoped that passage of 
H.J. Res. 62 will encourage the American public's interest in 
the history and contributions of Native Americans and inspire 
Native Americans of all ages to celebrate the great 
achievements of their ancestors and heroes. The designation of 
a Native American Heritage Day will provide recognition of the 
contributions of Native Americans to the United States military 
and civilian life and acknowledge their heritage and culture.

         SUMMARY OF THE AMENDMENT IN THE NATURE OF A SUBSTITUE

    During an open business meeting on April 24, 2008, the 
Committee considered and approved an amendment in the nature of 
substitute to H.J. Res. 62. The amendment in the nature of a 
substitute limited the measure to designating Friday, November 
28, 2008, as ``Native American Heritage Day,'' and removed 
references to the United States Constitution in Sections 2 and 
3.

         SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS OF H.J. RES 62, AS AMENDED

Section 1. Short title

    Section 1 provides the short title of the bill as the 
``Native American Heritage Day Act of 2008.''

Section 2. Findings

    Section 2 states that Congress finds that Native Americans 
are descendants of the original inhabitants of what is now the 
United States. It also finds that more Native Americans per 
capita have served in the United States military than any other 
group of Americans and they have done so with valor. In 
addition, Congress finds that there are many distinct and 
significant contributions by Native Americans in culture, 
society, religion, politics, economics, medicine and education 
to the United States and the rest of the world. Section 2 
states that nationwide recognition of these contributions will 
encourage Native Americans of all ages. Additionally, Section 2 
finds that an annual designation of this day will underscore 
the government-to-government relationship between the Federal 
government and tribes and will encourage additional 
understanding of Native Americans in our public education 
systems.

Section 3. Implementation of Native American Heritage Day

    Section 3 states that Congress designates Friday, November 
28, 2008 as ``Native American Heritage Day.'' Section 3 also 
encourages the people of the United States as well as Federal, 
State and local governments, and interested groups and 
organizations to observe Native American Heritage Day with 
appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities. Section 3 
states that such activities may include activities relating to 
the historical and present-day status of Native Americans and 
tribal governments; the culture, traditions and languages of 
Native Americans; and the rich cultural legacy of Native 
Americans that all Americans enjoy today.

                          LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    H.J. Res. 62 was introduced in the House of Representatives 
on November 13, 2007 by Representative Joe Baca, for himself 
and 83 other original cosponsors. H.J. Res. 62 was referred to 
the Committee on Education and Labor.
    On November 13, 2007, the House of Representatives moved to 
consider H.J. Res. 62 under suspension of the rules, the rules 
were suspended and H.J. Res. 62 was agreed to by voice vote. 
H.J. Res. 62 was sent to the Senate and referred to the 
Committee on Indian Affairs.
    On April 24, 2008, the Committee convened a business 
meeting to consider H.J. Res 62 and ordered it to be favorably 
reported with an amendment in the nature of a substitute.
    Three other bills were also introduced in the 110th 
Congress that relate to the designation of Native American 
Heritage Day: S. 1852 was introduced by Senator Inouye on July 
23, 2007 and referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary; 
H.R. 3585 was introduced by Representative Baca on September 
19, 2007, and referred to the House Subcommittee on Higher 
Education, Lifelong Learning, and Competitiveness; and S. Res. 
400 was introduced by Senator Inouye on December 11, 2007, and 
referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. No further 
action has been taken on these measures.

            COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION AND TABULATION OF VOTE

    On April 24, 2008, the Committee on Indian Affairs convened 
a business meeting to consider H.J. Res. 62, and other 
measures. During the business meeting, the Committee voted, by 
voice vote, to report H.J. Res. 62 favorably, with an amendment 
in the nature of a substitute, to the full Senate with the 
recommendation that it do pass.

                   COST AND BUDGETARY CONSIDERATIONS

    The following cost estimate, as provided by the 
Congressional Budget Office, dated May 28, 2008, was prepared 
for H.J. Res. 62:

H.J. Res. 62--Native American Heritage Day Act of 2008

    H.J. Res. 62 would designate Friday, November 28, 2008, as 
Native American Heritage Day. CBO estimates that implementing 
this legislation would have no significant impact on the 
federal budget. Enacting H.J. Res. 62 would not affect direct 
spending or revenues.
    H.J. Res. 62 contains no intergovernmental or private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act 
and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Leigh Angres. 
This estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

               REGULATORY AND PAPERWORK IMPACT STATEMENT

    Paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the 
Senate requires that each report accompanying a bill evaluate 
the regulatory and paperwork impact that would be incurred in 
carrying out the bill. The Committee believes that H.J. Res. 62 
will have a minimal impact on regulatory or paperwork 
requirements.

                        EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATIONS

    The Committee has received no communications from the 
Executive Branch regarding H.J. Res. 62.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with subsection 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee notes that no 
changes in existing law are made by H.J. Res. 62.