|March 14, 2013
Indian Country impacted by sequestration
By Lailani Upham
BILLINGS Sequestration means 8.2 percent in cuts to the federal budget but for Indian Country, sequestration means even deeper cuts, according to Montana Budget and Policy Center officials.
Western Native Voice, a non-profit voter engagement and empowerment agency based out of Billings, is urging citizens in Indian Country to voice out their concerns to legislators on the state and federal levels to reach a well-adjusted agreement regarding the cuts that will affect every Native community hard.
Contact members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, our two Senators, and our United States Representative and urge them to reach a balanced approach to replace the sequester, and be mindful of the cuts being made and the impact they will have on the lives of Native Americans. We in Indian Country will feel a greater impact than the rest of the nation. Indian Health Service will be experience some of the highest cuts.
The breakdown of the 8.2 percent federal budget equates to a 21 percent cut in Tribal Housing Grants; a 23 percent cut to Native American Job Training; and a 35 percent cut to Heating and Energy Assistance and more.
Laura John, Montana Budget and Policy Center State-Tribal Policy Analyst stated, Sequestration will have significant impacts on Indian Country. Our Congressman need to be aware that these cuts will place a disproportionate burden on American Indians.
A list of has been provided through Western Native Voice for people to call or write in their concerns to the appropriate legislator:
Senator Max Baucus
Senator John Tester
United States Representative for Montana
U.S. Representative Steve Daines
UNITED STATES SENATE COMMITTEE ON INDIAN AFFAIRS
Maria Cantwell, Chairwomen (WA)
Tim Johnson, Member (SD)
Jon Tester, Member (MT)
Tom Udall, Member (NM)
Phone: (202) 224-6621
Al Franken, Member (MN)
Phone: (651) 221-1016
Mark Begich, Member (AK)
Phone: (202) 224 - 3004
Brian Schatz, Member (HI)
Phone: (202) 224-3934
Heidi Heitkamp, Member (ND)
John Barrasso, Vice Chairman (WY)
John McCain, Member (AZ)
Phone: (202) 224-2235
Lisa Murkowski, Member (AK)
John Hoeven, Member (ND)
Michael Crapo, Member (ID)
Phone: (202) 224-6142
Deb Fischer, Member (NE)