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                                                      Calendar No. 166
116th Congress       }                                   {      Report
 1st Session         }                                   {      116-67




                 July 29, 2019.--Ordered to be printed


    Mr. Hoeven, from the Committee on Indian Affairs, submitted the 

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 1388]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Indian Affairs, to which referred the bill 
(H.R. 1388) to take lands in Sonoma County, California, into 
trust as part of the reservation of the Lytton Rancheria of 
California, and for other purposes, having considered the same, 
reports favorably thereon without amendment and recommends that 
the bill do pass.


    The purpose of the bill, H.R. 1388, is to provide 
congressional authorization for the U.S. Department of the 
Interior (DOI) to take land owned in fee by the Lytton 
Rancheria of California (Lytton Rancheria or Tribe) into trust 
for the benefit of the Tribe.


    The Lytton Rancheria is a federally recognized Indian 
Tribe. In 1958, the Lytton Rancheria, along with 40 other 
Indian Tribes in California, were the subject of Congressional 
action that sought to end the reservation status for tribal 
lands and the trust relationship with the Federal government. 
After the passage of the 1958 California Rancheria Act\1\ and 
through a series of tragic land transactions that followed, the 
Lytton Rancheria lost all lands located on their traditional 
    \1\California Rancheria Act of 1958, Pub. L. No. 85-671, 72 Stat. 
619, 619-21 (1958).
    In the late 1960s, the Federal government pivoted from 
assimilation and termination policies to a policy of tribal 
self-determination. As a result of this policy shift, Congress 
``restored'' the federal trust relationship with some Indian 
Tribes; others sought to restore this relationship through 
litigation.\2\ In 1987, the Lytton Rancheria joined other 
Indian Tribes in a Federal lawsuit that challenged the 
termination of their federal statuses. In 1991, the Scotts 
Valley, Guidiville, and Lytton Rancherias settled the lawsuit 
and had their federal recognition statuses restored under the 
stipulated judgment.\3\
    \2\See Amador County, California v. Salazar, 640 F.3d 373, 375 
(D.C. Cir. 2011) (discussing the 1983 stipulated order in Hardwick v. 
United States, No. C-79-1710 (N.D. Cal.)).
    \3\Scotts Valley Band of Pomo Indians of the Sugar Bowl Rancheria 
v. United States of America, No. C-86-3660-WWS (N.D. Cal. Mar. 15, 
    The settlement reached between the parties state that the 
termination of the Lytton Rancheria was illegal and that the 
descendants of the Tribe were entitled to the rights and 
benefits as individual Indians.\4\ While the settlement 
provided that the Tribe could organize under the Indian 
Reorganization Act, the agreement also assured nearby 
landowners, who intervened in the lawsuit, that the Lytton 
Rancheria would not conduct gaming in Alexander Valley except 
when in compliance with the County of Sonoma's general plan and 
the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA).\5\ Since the court 
entered its judgment in 1991, the DOI has listed the Lytton 
Rancheria as a federally recognized Indian Tribe in the Federal 
Register each year such notices were issued between 1992 and 
    \4\According to the district court in Artichoke Joe's, the 1961 
termination was illegal because Public Law 85-671 Sec. 3(c) required 
the federal government to ``install or rehabilitate . . . irrigation or 
domestic water systems'' before the land was distributed, or within a 
reasonable time after the land was distributed. Artichoke Joe's 
California Grand Casino v. Norton, 278 F.Supp.2d 1174, 1177 (E.D. Cal. 
2003) (detailing the history of litigation and describing the 
settlement). The federal government never constructed the required 
water system improvements on the Lytton Rancheria's lands, according to 
the Tribe. Id.
    \5\See Artichoke Joe's, 278 F.Supp.2d at 1177 (detailing the 
history of litigation and describing the settlement).
    \6\The list is published each year pursuant to the Federally 
Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994, Pub. L. No. 103-454, 108 
Stat. 4791, codified at 25 U.S.C. Sec. 479a.
    To date, no land has been returned to the Lytton Rancheria 
resulting from the settlement or stipulated judgment. But in 
2000, Congress passed the Omnibus Indian Advancement Act, which 
directed the Secretary of the Interior to take 9.5 acres of 
land in San Pablo, California into trust for the Tribe, 
declared those lands to be part of the Tribe's reservation, and 
deemed the land to be eligible for gaming under IGRA. The 
following year, Congress clarified that the provisions of IGRA, 
but not those relating to the land's eligibility for class III 
gaming, apply to future gaming on the San Pablo Property.\7\ 
Consequently, the small parcel of 9.5 acres that was taken into 
trust for the Tribe was used to build a Class II gaming 
operation. Because the Tribe does not have any additional trust 
lands available to house its membership, it is seeking 
legislative action.
    \7\Section 128 of the Department of the Interior and Related 
Agencies Appropriation Act of 2002, Pub. L. No. 107-63, 115 Stat. 414, 
442 (Nov. 5, 2001) (``2001 Amendment'').

                          LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    On February 27, 2019, Representative Jared Huffman 
introduced H.R. 1388, the Lytton Rancheria Homelands Act of 
2019. The bill was referred to the Subcommittee for Indigenous 
Peoples of the United States of the Committee on Natural 
Resources in the House of Representatives. On March 26, 2019, 
the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1388, by a vote of 
    On March 27, 2019, the Senate received H.R. 1388 and the 
bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs 
(Committee). On June 11, 2019, Senators Feinstein and Harris 
sent a letter to Senators Hoeven and Udall requesting the 
Committee to schedule a business meeting and give favorable 
consideration to H.R. 1388 at the earliest convenience.
    On June 19, 2019, the Committee held a duly called business 
meeting to consider H.R. 1388. No amendments were filed to the 
bill. The Committee passed H.R. 1388 by voice vote and ordered 
the bill to be favorably reported.
    At this time, there is no Senate companion bill.
    115th Congress. Representative Denham introduced H.R. 597, 
the Lytton Rancheria Homelands Act of 2017 on January 20, 2017. 
The bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, 
and Alaska Native Affairs of the Committee on Natural Resources 
in the House of Representatives. The House Committee on Natural 
Resources favorably reported the bill on June 27, 2017, without 
amendment. H.R. 597 was passed by the House of Representatives 
on July 11, 2017.
    On July 12, 2017, H.R. 597 was received in the Senate and 
referred to the Committee. On April 25, 2018, the Committee 
held a legislative hearing on the bill. Following the 
legislative hearing on H.R. 597, the Lytton Rancheria and 
County agreed to further amend the memoranda of agreement to 
prohibit gaming in the county, in perpetuity, so long as the 
Lytton Rancheria is not involuntarily prohibited by 
governmental decision or action from operating its current 
casino located in San Pablo, California, pursuant to IGRA. The 
amended memoranda of agreement was ratified by the Lytton 
Rancheria and the County.
    In addition, the Department of Justice sent comments to the 
Committee regarding provisions within the bill. These comments 
concerning the gaming restrictions, liabilities on the land, 
and other technical matters did not require amendments to the 
legislation. On July 11, 2018, the Committee held a duly called 
business meeting to consider H.R. 597. The bill was passed 
without amendment by the Committee and placed on the Senate 
Legislative Calendar under General Orders. No further action 
was taken on the bill.
    114th Congress. The Lytton Rancheria Homelands Act of 2015, 
H.R. 2538, was introduced by Representatives Huffman and Denham 
on May 21, 2015 and referred to the Subcommittee on Indian, 
Insular and Alaska Native Affairs of the Committee on Natural 
Resources of the House of Representatives. Representative 
Thompson was added as a co-sponsor on June 9, 2015.
    The House Subcommittee on Indian, Insular and Alaska Native 
Affairs held a hearing on H.R. 2538 on June 17, 2015. On 
February 2, 2016, the House Subcommittee discharged the bill 
and the full Committee on Natural Resources considered H.R. 
2538 during a mark-up session, at which the bill was ordered to 
be reported, as amended, by unanimous consent. On June 21, 
2016, H.R. 2538 was placed on the Union Calendar where no 
further action was taken on the bill.

                          SUMMARY OF THE BILL

    The bill, H.R. 1388, would place 511 acres of land into 
trust for the benefit of the Lytton Rancheria through a 
mandatory trust acquisition by the DOI. This fee land is 
located adjacent to the Town of Windsor, near the tribe's 
original homelands. The land, once it is held in trust for the 
Tribe, will assist in reestablishing a permanent homeland for 
the Lytton Rancheria, with housing, government facilities, and 
economic development opportunities, including viniculture. The 
legislation will also make the lands part of the Lytton 
Rancheria's reservation. H.R. 1388 includes a permanent gaming 
prohibition on the lands described in the legislation and on 
future trust acquisitions for the Tribe in the County.
    The Lytton Rancheria has spent years negotiating with the 
County, local school district, and local fire department to 
form three memoranda of agreements that provide for the 
mitigation of any potential off-reservation impacts from the 
uses of the trust land.
    On May 27, 2015, Governor Jerry Brown, Jr. sent a letter to 
Rep. Huffman supporting the Lytton Rancheria Homelands Act of 
2015, a bill similar to H.R. 1388. Both the Lytton Rancheria 
Tribal Council and the County Board of Supervisors voted 
unanimously to support the memoranda of agreement and needed 
Federal legislation to take the lands into trust for the 
benefit of the Tribe.

                          NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Taking the land into trust, as described in H.R. 1388, 
would allow the Lytton Rancheria to rebuild their community by 
constructing homes and government facilities, expand economic 
development, and create areas to practice traditional and 
religious teachings.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    This section cites the Act as the ``Lytton Rancheria 
Homelands Act of 2019.''

Sec. 2. Findings

    This section explains the history of Lytton Rancheria, a 
federally recognized Indian Tribe, and how they lost their 
trust status and homelands. Through litigation, the Lytton 
Rancheria and other Indian Tribes challenged the loss of their 
trust status. In a stipulated judgement, the court restored the 
Lytton Rancheria's trust relationship with the United States 
and held that the Tribe would have the ``individual and 
collective status and rights''' it had prior to its 
termination. The stipulated judgement expressly contemplated 
the acquisition of trust lands for the Lytton Rancheria.

Sec. 3. Definitions

    This section provides for definitions used throughout the 
Act, including the term ``County'' to mean the Sonoma County, 
California; the term ``Secretary'' to mean the Secretary of the 
Interior; and the term ``Tribe'' to mean the Lytton Rancheria 
of California, a federally recognized Indian Tribe.

Sec. 4. Lands to be taken into trust

    This section specifies the land that will be taken into 
trust; the land owned by the Tribe and depicted on the map 
titled ``Lytton Fee Owned Property to be Taken into Trust,'' 
dated May 1, 2015. The land to be taken into trust are part of 
the Lytton Rancheria's reservation and shall be administered in 
accordance with the laws and regulations generally applicable 
to property held in trust by the United States for an Indian 

Sec. 5. Gaming

    This section explains that the lands taken into trust under 
this Act are not eligible for gaming under the Indian Gaming 
Regulatory Act.
    This section also provides for a permanent gaming 
prohibition on the Tribe for any future land into trust 
acquisitions in the County.

Sec. 6. Applicability of certain law

    This section states the Memorandum of Agreement, and any 
addenda and supplement or amendment, entered into by the Lytton 
Rancheria and the County concerning the trust land is not 
subject to review or approval of the Secretary in order to be 
effective, including review or approval under (25 U.S.C. 
Sec. 81).


    The following cost estimate, as provided by the 
Congressional Budget Office, dated July 12, 2019, was prepared 
for H.R. 1388:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                     Washington, DC, July 12, 2019.
Hon. John Hoeven,
Chairman, Committee on Indian Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 1388, the Lytton 
Rancheria Homelands Act of 2019.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Jon Sperl.
                                         Phillip L. Swagel,


    H.R. 1388 would take into trust, for the benefit of the 
Lytton Rancheria of California, a federally recognized Indian 
tribe, certain land located in the county of Sonoma, 
California. The act would specify certain prohibitions on 
gaming on the affected land, consistent with an existing 
memorandum of understanding between the tribe and the county.
    Using information from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, CBO 
estimates that implementing H.R. 1388 would have no significant 
effect on the federal budget. CBO estimates that any change in 
the agency's administrative costs under the act, which would be 
subject to appropriation, would not exceed $500,000.
    H.R. 1388 would impose an intergovernmental mandate as 
defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) by 
prohibiting state and local governments from taxing land taken 
into trust for the Lytton Rancheria. CBO estimates the costs of 
the mandate would be well below the threshold established in 
UMRA ($82 million in 2019, adjusted annually for inflation).
    The act contains no private-sector mandates as defined in 
    The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Jon Sperl (for 
federal costs) and Rachel Austin (for mandates). The estimate 
was reviewed by H. Samuel Papenfuss, Deputy Assistant Director 
for Budget Analysis.


    Paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the 
Senate requires each report accompanying a bill to evaluate the 
regulatory and paperwork impact that would be incurred in 
carrying out the bill. The Committee believes that H.R. 1388 
will have minimal impact on regulatory or paperwork 

                        EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATIONS

    The Committee has received no communications from the 
Executive Branch regarding H.R. 1388.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    On February 6, 2019, the Committee unanimously approved a 
motion to waive subsection 12 of rule XXVI of the Standing 
Rules of the Senate. In the opinion of the Committee, it is 
necessary to dispense with subsection 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate to expedite the business of the