Support the Full Implementation of the 2016 NATIVE Act (Public Law 114-221)

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TITLE: Support the Full Implementation of the 2016 NATIVE Act (Public Law 114-221)

WHEREAS, we, the members of the National Congress of American Indians of the United States, invoking the divine blessing of the Creator upon our efforts and purposes, in order to preserve for ourselves and our descendants the inherent sovereign rights of our Indian nations, rights secured under Indian treaties and agreements with the United States, and all other rights and benefits to which we are entitled under the laws and Constitution of the United States, to enlighten the public toward a better understanding of the Indian people, to preserve Indian cultural values, and otherwise promote the health, safety and welfare of the Indian people, do hereby establish and submit the following resolution; and

WHEREAS, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) was established in 1944 and is the oldest and largest national organization of American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments; and

WHEREAS, the NATIVE Act was enacted in September 2016, and it supports:
• establishing a more inclusive U.S. tourism strategy in order to expand economic opportunity to Native communities, create jobs, and elevate living standards;
• leveraging tourism to achieve sustainable growth in Native communities, increase tourism capacity, and spur infrastructure development;
• empowering Native people to tell their own stories, and define the scope of tourism activities on tribal lands;
• strengthening and improving tribal self-determination and self-governance capabilities;
• enhancing the financial means of Native communities to protect cultural resources and preserve natural landscapes;
• establishing tribal consultation by federal agencies that have tourism functions, programs, and assets with Native communities concerning tourism opportunities;
• increasing coordination and collaboration between federal tourism assets to support Indian Country tourism and the development of technologically innovative projects;
• growing heritage and cultural tourism opportunities throughout the U.S. by showcasing the diversity and continuing vitality of tribal cultures;
• promoting more authentic and unique visitor experiences that will draw international and domestic travelers to rural and remote areas that may not be well known;
• enhancing the tourism potential of every state and increase U.S. service export revenues;
• and the designation of a facilitator with the organizational mission, knowledge, and experience necessary to ably facilitate coordination between federal agencies and tribal nations and Native organizations for the purposes of implementing the Act; and

WHEREAS, the NATIVE Act mandates improved travel and tourism data collection and analysis, increased usability of public information and federal websites, support for national tourism goals, highlighting programs that can be used for tourism infrastructure in Native communities, development of assets that showcase and respect the diversity of Indian Country, development of bilingual signage, and improvement of access to transportation programs for building capacity in Native communities.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) does hereby call on the federal government to immediately and fully implement the NATIVE Act; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NCAI supports full federal funding of NATIVE Act mandates to create and strengthen collaboration and coordination in all aspects of tourism (hospitality, recreation, cultural heritage, transportation, etc.) between federal agencies and tribal nations and Native organizations; and

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that this resolution shall be the policy of NCAI until it is withdrawn or modified by subsequent resolution.


The foregoing resolution was adopted by the General Assembly at the 2017 Midyear Session of the National Congress of American Indians, held at the Mohegan Sun Convention Center, June 12 to June 15, 2017, with a quorum present.