Provided by Congressman Rob Wittman’s Office
Congressman Rob Wittman (VA-01) released this statement regarding the inclusion of funding for the newly recognized Virginia Tribes in the Fiscal Year 2019 Department of Interior budget:
“Today, Secretary Zinke and the Department of Interior released their Fiscal Year 2019 Budget. Included within the budget are funds to provide initial federal support to the six Virginia Tribes recognized in my legislation, H.R. 984, the Thomasina E. Jordan Virginia Tribal Recognition Act. The Chickahominy, Chickahominy-Eastern Division, Upper Mattaponi, Rappahannock, Monacan, and Nansemond Tribes each would receive $160,000 totaling $960,000 in dedicated funding. These critical funds would help each Tribe carry out the day-to-day responsibilities and operations of a tribal government.
“After working with Secretary Zinke, I am glad to see funding included within the Department of Interior’s FY19 budget for these valuable Virginia Tribes. The 2019 budget is the first opportunity to include funding for the new Tribes in the budget process. I want to thank Secretary Zinke for his work and for recognizing the importance of these six tribes in the forming of our nation.”
Rep. Wittman introduced H.R. 984, on Feb. 7, 2017. The bill passed the House by voice vote on May 17, 2017 and the Senate by Unanimous Consent on Jan. 11, 2018. President Trump signed the legislation into law on Jan. 29, 2018. The six tribes included received official recognition from the Commonwealth of Virginia but had faced barriers preventing them from receiving federal recognition due gaps in official records. The Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2017 rights this wrong.
Fiscal Year 2019 Department of Interior Budget can be accessed here.
Congressman Rob Wittman represents the 1st District of Virginia. He serves on the House Natural Resources Committee and the House Armed Services Committee, where he is the Chairman of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee.