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                                                       Calendar No. 569
104th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE

 2d Session                                                     104-355
_______________________________________________________________________


 
  TO AMEND THE OLDER AMERICANS ACT OF 1955 TO IMPROVE THE PROVISIONS 
              RELATING TO INDIANS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

                                _______
                                

                August 27, 1996.--Ordered to be printed

   Filed under authority of the order of the Senate of August 2, 1996

_______________________________________________________________________


    Mr. McCain, from the Committee on Indian Affairs, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 1972]

    The Committee on Indian Affairs, to which was referred the 
bill (S. 1972) to amend the Older Americans Act of 1965 to 
improve the provisions relating to Indians, and for other 
purposes, having considered the same, reports favorably thereon 
without amendment and recommends that the bill do pass.

                                Purpose

    The purpose of S. 1972 is to amend the Older Americans Act 
of 1965 to improve provisions relating to Native American 
programs.

                               Background

    The Older Americans Act authorizes the organization and 
delivery of home and community based care to older Americans. 
The Act is administered by the Administration on Aging within 
the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and operated 
through a network of State and tribal area service providers. 
Through this network, critical human and social services are 
provided to older Americans aged 60 and over on a daily basis.
    Title VI of the Act authorizes grant awards to Indian 
tribal governments and tribal organizations to implement 
programs to benefit older Native Americans. Currently, Indian 
tribes and tribal organizations participate in Older Americans 
Act programs including home-delivered meals and other nutrition 
services, supportive services such as transportation and other 
access services, senior community service employment, elder 
abuse prevention and the long term care ombudsman program. 
These programs have proven to be of great benefit to many older 
Native Americans.
    Tribal applicants are required to submit statistical data 
on programs and activities to be carried out with grant funding 
under title VI as well as semi-annual reports on financial 
information, including the unduplicated count of persons served 
and the total number of services provided. Indian tribes have 
experienced difficulty in meeting certain requirements under 
the Act while still providing services to elders in small, 
rural and geographically-isolated Indian communities. The 
inability to tailor nutritional and supportive programs that 
meet the unique characteristics and culture of Native American 
and Alaska Native communities has posed additional problems for 
many tribal communities.
    Certain requirements under the Act do not conform to the 
unique characteristics of Indian reservations, which are 
characterized by geographic isolation, high poverty and 
unemployment levels. Indian tribes have expressed the need for 
additional flexibility under the Act because the application 
and reporting requirements have proven to be unworkable and 
inefficient. Other types of nutritional programs have not 
proven to be effective for rural and isolated areas such as 
those found in Alaska Native communities.
    S. 1972 will clarify certain provisions of the Older 
Americans Act in order to provide more flexibility to Indian 
tribal applicants in meeting application and reporting 
requirements. The bill authorizes the Assistant Secretary for 
Aging to take into consideration the unique cultural and 
geographical circumstances facing American Indian and Alaska 
Native populations. These changes will enable Indian tribes to 
tailor supportive and nutrition services authorized under the 
Act to better meet the diverse needs of American Indian and 
Alaska Native communities
    The Assistant Secretary for Aging may also waive or exempt 
certain application or reporting requirements for tribal 
applicants in geographically-isolated areas or those programs 
that serve small, rural Indian populations. Many tribal 
programs that serve small Indian or Alaska Native populations 
spend undue amounts of time and money trying to fulfill onerous 
and inflexible reporting requirements. The bill authorizes the 
Assistant Secretary to grant a waiver or exemption to Indian 
tribal programs where appropriate, while maintaining the strict 
accountability standards that are required under the Act.

                          Legislative History

    S. 1972 was introduced on July 18, 1996 by Senator McCain 
for himself and Senators Inouye and Stevens and was referred to 
the Committee on Indian Affairs.

            Committee Recommendation and Tabulation of Vote

    In open business session on July 24, 1996 the Committee on 
Indian Affairs ordered the bill reported with the 
recommendation that the Senate pass the bill as reported.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

                         section 1. short title

    This section cites the short title of the bill, as the 
``Older Americans Indian Technical Amendments Act.''

     section 2. indian employment; definition of Indian Reservation

    This section amends section 502(b)(1)(B) of the Act (42 
U.S.C. 3056(b)(1)(B)) by modifying the definition of 
``reservation'' in the current Act to conform with the 
definition found in section 2601(2) of the Energy Policy Act of 
1992.

              section 3. population statistics development

    This section amends section 614(b) of the Act (42 U.S.C. 
3057e(b)) by striking the word ``certification'' and inserting 
the word ``approval.''

                   section 4. reporting requirements

    This section amends section 614(c) of the Act (42 U.S.C. 
3057e(c)) by adding a new paragraph (2) which authorizes the 
Assistant Secretary on Aging to waive or exempt the reporting 
requirements of section (a)(3) for applicants that serve Indian 
populations in geographically-isolated areas or applicants that 
serve small Indian populations, while maintaining strict 
accountability standards of the Act.

         section 5. expenditure of funds for nutrition services

    This section amends section 614(c) of the Act (42 U.S.C. 
3057e(c)) by adding a new paragraph (3) which requires the 
Assistant Secretary on Aging, in determining whether an 
application complies with the requirements of subsection 
(a)(8), to take into account the unique cultural and 
geographical considerations of the Indian populations to be 
served.

                  section 6. coordination of services

    This section amends section 614(c) of the Act (42 U.S.C. 
3057e(c)) by adding a new paragraph (4) which requires the 
Assistant Secretary on Aging, in determining whether an 
application complies with the requirements of subsection 
(a)(12), to provide flexibility tribal applicants by requiring 
only that they submit an appropriate narrative description of 
the geographical area and population to be served and an 
appropriate assurance against duplicate services being 
provided.

                    Cost and Budgetary Consideration

    The cost estimate for S. 1972 as calculated by the 
Congressional Budget Office is set forth below:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                    Washington, DC, August 8, 1996.
Hon. John McCain,
Chairman, Committee on Indian Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) 
has reviewed S. 1972, the Older Americans Indian Technical 
Amendments Act, as ordered reported by the Committee on Indian 
Affairs on July 24, 1996. CBO estimates that enactment of S. 
1972 would have no effect on the federal budget. Because 
enactment of the bill would affect neither direct spending nor 
receipts, pay-as-you-go procedures would not apply.
    S. 1972 would change the definition of Indian reservation 
as it applies to Native American participants in the Senior 
Community Service Employment program under Title V of the Older 
Americans Act. Under current law, tribal organizations may 
receive grants to provide services to Native Americans living 
on or near federal or state reservations. S. 1972 would modify 
the definition to conform with the definition in section 
2601(2) of the Energy Policy Act of 1992. The new definition 
would clarify that Native Americans living on former 
reservations--particularly in Oklahoma--would be eligible for 
services under Title V. Although tribal organizations on these 
former reservations currently receive grants under Title V, 
they are not explicitly included in the definition used in the 
Older Americans Act. The new definition would not include state 
reservations or Native Americans living near--but not on--
reservations. While state reservations are included in the 
current law definition, no state-recognized tribal organization 
is receiving grants under Title V of the Older Americans Act.
    Other provisions of the bill would reduce the reporting 
requirements for applicants that serve Indian populations in 
geographically isolated areas and allow the Department of 
Health and Human Services to provide maximum flexibility to 
applicants who take into account local customs and cultural 
needs of Indian populations receiving nutrition services. The 
bill also would provide flexibility to grantees in documenting 
their efforts to coordinate the provision of services. CBO 
estimates that these changes would have no budgetary effect.
    S. 1972 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 
(Public Law 104-4) and would impose no costs on state, local, 
or tribal governments. The bill would make it easier for tribal 
organizations to apply for grants under the Older Americans Act 
of 1965.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. CBO staff contacts for federal 
budgetary effects are Dottie Rosenbaum and Christi Hawley. For 
private sector effects, the contact is Connie Rhind, and for 
state and local government effects, the contact is Marjorie 
Miller.
            Sincerely,
                                              James L. Blum
                                   (For June E. O'Neill, Director).

                      Regulatory Impact Statement

    Paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the 
Senate requires each report accompanying a bill to evaluate the 
regulatory and paperwork impact that would be incurred in 
carrying out the bill. The Committee believes that S. 1972 will 
have no regulatory or paperwork impact

                        Executive Communications

    The Committee has not received any executive communication 
from the Administration on Aging on S. 1972.

                        Changes in Existing Law

    In compliance with subsection 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee states that 
enactment of S. 1972 will result in the following changes in 42 
U.S.C. 3001 et seq. with existing language which is to be 
deleted are in black brackets and the new language which is to 
be added is in italics:

                      42 U.S.C. Sec. 3056(b)(1)(B)

    ``(B)(i) will provide employment for eligible individuals 
in the community in which such individuals reside, or in nearby 
communities, or
    ``(ii) if such project is carried out by a tribal 
organization that enters into an agreement under subsection (b) 
or receives assistance from a State that enters into such an 
agreement, will provide employment for such individuals who are 
Indians residing on an Indian reservation, as the term is 
defined in section 2601(2) of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 
(U.S.C. 3501 (2)).''
          * * * * * * *

                        42 U.S.C. Sec. 3057e(b)

    ``(b) Population Statistics Development.--For the purpose 
of any application submitted under this part, the tribal 
organization may develop its own population statistics, with 
[certification] approval from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, in 
order to establish eligibility.''
          * * * * * * *

                        42 U.S.C. Sec. 3057e(c)

    ``(c)(1) Approval by Assistant Secretary.--The Assistant 
Secretary shall approve any application which complies with the 
provisions of subsection (a) of this section.
    ``(2) The Assistant Secretary shall provide waivers and 
exemptions of the reporting requirements of subsection (a)(3) 
for applicants that serve Indian populations in geographically 
isolated areas, or applicants that serve small Indian 
populations, where the small scale of the project, the nature 
of the applicant, or other factors make the reporting 
requirements unreasonable under the circumstances. The 
Assistant Secretary shall consult with such applicants in 
establishing appropriate waivers and exemptions.
    ``(3) In determining whether an application complies with 
the requirements of subsection (a)(8), the Assistant Secretary 
shall provide maximum flexibility to an applicant who seeks to 
take into account subsistence needs, local customs, and other 
characteristics that are appropriate to the unique cultural, 
regional, and geographic needs of the Indian populations to be 
served.
    ``(4) In determining whether an application complies with 
the requirements of subsection (a)(12), the Assistant Secretary 
shall require only that an applicant provide an appropriate 
narrative description of the geographical area to be served and 
an assurance that procedures will be adopted to ensure against 
duplicate services being provided to the same recipients.''