Chairman-Elect Hastings Announces Re-Establishment of Indian and Alaska Native Affairs Subcommittee and Announces New Subcommittee Chairmen

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman-Elect Hastings Announces Re-Establishment of Indian and Alaska Native Affairs Subcommittee and Announces New Subcommittee Chairmen

On December 29, 2010, House Resources Committee Chairman-elect Doc Hastings (R-WA) named subcommittee chairmen for the 112th Congress, which will last for calendar years 2011-2012. Representative Hastings also announced the elevation of the Office of Indian Affairs to subcommittee status. He named Representative Don Young (R-AK) to chair the re-established Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs. The Subcommittee’s jurisdiction will include oversight and legislative responsibilities for American Indian and Alaska Native issues, similar to the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.

Chairman-to-be Hastings stated that, “The creation of a subcommittee specifically dedicated to tribal matters will promote increased consultation on legislation concerning Indians and Alaska Natives. The subcommittee will focus on developing tribal economies and reducing federal obstacles that block tribal job creation and the production of new wealth and investments on Indian lands.”

The Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs will provide Indian country with forum to focus on the major issues facing tribal communities nationwide. In the past, concerns were raised that Indian affairs issues had to compete with environmental, mining, water and other issues under the jurisdiction of the full House Natural Resources Committee. The Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs will be authorized to call and report hearings, field hearings, and legislation, and conduct oversight of all issues relating to tribal government affairs. The hope is that this narrowed focus will lead to greater dialogue on legislation and issues of importance to Indian country. The House Natural Resources Committee last established a subcommittee to specifically focus on Indian Affairs in the 103rd Congress (1993-1994) when Representative George Miller (D-CA) chaired the Subcommittee on Native American Affairs.

In addition to the Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs, four other subcommittees make up the Committee on Natural Resources. The following is a full listing of the subcommittee chairmen named by Representative Hastings. Representative Rahall (D-WV), who will be the Ranking Member in the 112th Congress has not yet named ranking members of the subcommittees.

To read the press release from the House Natural Resources Committee, click here

Natural Resources Subcommittee Chairmen for the 112th Congress

• Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs
Chairman: Representative Don Young (R-AK)

• Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources
Chairman: Representative Doug Lamborn (R-CO)

• Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans and Wildlife
Chairman: Representative John Fleming (R-LA)

• Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands
Chairman: Representative Rob Bishop (R-UT)

• Subcommittee on Water and Power
Chairman: Representative Tom McClintock (R-CA)