President’s Budget Includes Billions for Tribal Governments
Earlier this month, the Biden Administration released its FY2024 budget, which it said in a press release will “invest in America, lower costs and cut taxes for working families, and strengthen Medicare and Social Security.” Concurrent with the budget’s release, the White House also released a fact sheet outlining its items related to Tribal Nations and Tribal Communities.
“The President’s Budget—informed by direct consultation with Tribal leaders—continues to demonstrate the President’s commitment through historic investments in the Indian Health Service, Tribal public safety, affordable housing, education, and more,” the release notes.
The Administration’s release also noted that it has continually allocated record investments to Tribal Nations and Native communities through the American Rescue Plan and the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Reauthorization Act of 2022. The administration also enacted an advance appropriation for 2024 for the Indian Health Service (IHS) to improve the overall health of American Indians and Alaska Natives. The budget prioritizes creating jobs in tribal communities by building clean energy infrastructure, as well as advancing environmental justice in Indian country.
The budget provides $4.7 billion to support Department of Interior Tribal programs, including those that support educational needs, public safety and justice, and social services. The budget also commits to Tribal infrastructure and affordable housing, as well as Tribal water rights settlements. It provides $32 million to expand the Rural Partners Network (RPN) to create local jobs and support independent stability in Tribal communities.
The President’s budget allocates nearly $35 billion for Tribal law enforcement to promote public safety, including the continual efforts to address the crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons. The budget also proposes $1 billion to implement programs through VAWA, such as transitional housing, legal assistance for victims, and sexual assault services.
To help create jobs and strengthen Tribal communities, the budget commits to connecting Indian country with high-speed, reliable, and affordable internet. It also commits to helping low and middle income students by improving college affordability. The budget proposes to increase the discretionary maximum Pell Grant by $500, which would help more than 6.8 million students pay for college.