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                                                       Calendar No. 534
113th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session                                                     113-260

======================================================================

 
   TO ENCOURAGE THE STATE OF ALASKA TO ENTER INTO INTERGOVERNMENTAL 
AGREEMENTS WITH INDIAN TRIBES IN THE STATE RELATING TO THE ENFORCEMENT 
OF CERTAIN STATE LAWS BY INDIAN TRIBES, TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE 
   IN RURAL ALASKA, TO REDUCE ALCOHOL AND DRUG ABUSE, AND FOR OTHER 
                                PURPOSES

                                _______
                                

              September 18, 2014.--Ordered to be reported

                                _______
                                

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

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 1474]

    The Committee on Indian Affairs, to which was referred the 
bill (S. 1474) to encourage the state of Alaska to enter into 
intergovernmental agreements with Indian tribes in the State 
relating to the enforcement of certain State laws by Indian 
tribes, to improve the quality of life in rural Alaska, to 
reduce alcohol and drug abuse, and for other purposes, having 
considered the same, reports favorably thereon with an 
amendment and recommends that the bill, as amended, do pass.

                                Purpose

    The purpose of S. 1474 is to supplement State jurisdiction 
in Alaska Native villages with enhanced tribal and local 
authority to improve the quality of life in rural Alaska by 
helping to address and reduce domestic violence against Alaska 
Native women and children along with alcohol and drug abuse.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    Many Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages face 
significant public safety challenges and struggle to combat 
staggering rates of violent crime with inadequate resources and 
technology. There are 229 Federally recognized tribes in 
Alaska, which are often geographically isolated by rivers, 
oceans, and mountains. Alaska tribes can exercise civil 
authority; however, the recent reauthorization of the Violence 
Against Women Act (VAWA) has clouded to what extent that civil 
authority lies over non-tribal members. Only a handful of 
tribes in Alaska have any law enforcement presence. Those 
tribes that do have peace officers or tribal police provide 
basic law enforcement and those offices have little training or 
equipment.
    In Alaska there are approximately 100 tribal courts 
exercising tribes' jurisdiction. Many of these tribes have 
developed their own constitutions, ordinances and protocols 
that incorporate the tribes' traditional values and practices. 
Tribal courts in Alaska typically address civil issues such as 
child welfare, Indian Child Welfare Act cases, customary 
adoptions, public intoxication, disorderly conduct, domestic 
violence, and minor juvenile offenses, through tribal remedies.
    The State of Alaska has asserted exclusive criminal 
jurisdiction over all lands, including Alaska Native Claims 
Settlement Act and tribal land. Approximately 370 State 
troopers have primary responsibility for law enforcement in 
rural Alaska, but have a full-time presence in less than half 
of the remote Alaska Native villages. Seventy-five villages 
lack any law enforcement presence at all. The State exercises 
its jurisdiction through the provision of law enforcement and 
judicial services from a set of regional locations under the 
direction and control of State commissioners and judges.
    The 2013 reauthorization of VAWA prohibited Alaska tribes--
with the exception of the Metlakatla Indian Community--from the 
criminal jurisdiction expansions granted to other non-Alaskan 
tribes. Section 910 of VAWA further prohibited Alaska tribes--
with the exception of the Metlakatla Indian Community--from 
issuing and enforcing domestic violence protective orders 
against non-member Alaska Natives and non-Natives. In 2013, the 
Indian Law and Order Commission issued a report, entitled ``A 
Roadmap for Making Native America Safer,'' that recommended 
several changes to Federal law to improve public safety 
conditions in rural Alaska, including changes that would allow 
Alaska Native tribes to exercise criminal jurisdiction in their 
villages.
    The Committee on Indian Affairs held a legislative hearing 
on S. 1474 on April 2, 2014, where Alaska tribes and the 
Department of the Interior testified in support of the bill.

                          Legislative History

    S. 1474 was introduced on August 1, 2013, by Senator Mark 
Begich and Senator Lisa Murkowski. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Indian Affairs. On April 2, 2014, the Committee 
held a hearing on the bill. On May 21, 2014, the Committee met 
to consider the bill. One substitute amendment was offered by 
Senator Begich, and the bill, as amended, was adopted 
unanimously and ordered favorably reported to the Senate by 
voice vote.

        Section-by-Section Analysis of Bill as Ordered Reported

    Senator Begich filed an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute. The bill as amended, would do the following:

Section 1--Short title

    The Act may be cited as the ``Alaska Safe Families and 
Villages Act of 2014''.

Section 2--Findings and purposes

    Section 2 states the findings of Congress and purposes for 
the need for this act.
    The substitute amendment added statistics and other 
findings supporting the need for the legislation. New findings 
include references to the Indian Law and Order Commission 
Report, which was not complete at the time of the bill's 
introduction. The amended language also expands the bill's 
purpose to support tribes in the State in the enforcement and 
adjudication of tribal laws relating to child abuse and 
neglect, domestic violence, and drug and alcohol offenses.

Section 3--Definitions

    Section 3 defines the key terms used throughout this act.

Section 4--Alaska Safe Families and Villages Self Governance 
        Intergovernmental Program

    Section 4 establishes authority for the United States 
Attorney General to create the ``Alaska Safe Families and 
Villages Self Governance Intergovernmental Grant Program'' to 
make grants available to Alaska Native tribes carrying out 
intergovernmental agreements with the State of Alaska, in an 
effort to provide more local tools and options to combat 
village public safety issues. Section 4 also provides 
guidelines for tribes that seek to enter into such agreements 
and establishes support for the use and execution of tribal 
remedies.
    The following are required for tribes to be deemed eligible 
for the program:
           Submit an application;
           Have three fiscal years of clean financial 
        records;
           Demonstrate sufficient capacity to conduct 
        the program, such as a history operating children's 
        courts, or other social service or law enforcement 
        programs; and
           Certify or evidence intent to enter into 
        negotiations relating to an intergovernmental agreement 
        with the State.
    Section 4 allows tribes that are still in the planning 
phase and do not yet have a formalized agreement with the State 
to be deemed eligible for the grant program.

Section 5--Alaska Safe Families and Villages Self Governance Tribal Law 
        Project

    The provisions in Section 5 are conceptually modeled after 
prior versions of the bill (S. 1192), which would expand tribal 
authority over certain matters relating to child abuse, 
neglect, domestic violence, and drug and alcohol related 
offenses. This section does not require tribes to enter into 
agreements with the State.
    Tribes can apply directly with the Department of Justice 
(DOJ) to participate in the Alaska Self Governance Tribal Law 
Project. Once approved, the participating tribe would be 
eligible to exercise civil jurisdiction concurrent with the 
State over (A) any member of, or person eligible for membership 
in, the Indian tribe; and (B) any nonmember of the Indian 
tribe, if the nonmember resides or is located in the remote 
Alaska Native village in which the Indian tribe operates.
    The intent is to hold village residents' locally 
accountable for troublesome behavior, to minimize village 
residents' entanglement in the complex state judicial and 
incarceration systems, and to support local public safety 
presence that is predictable, accountable, respected, and 
culturally relevant in an effort to decrease public safety 
problems in remote Alaska Native villages by providing more 
tools for tribal governments and tribal courts.
    Section 5 holds participating tribes accountable to the 
protections found in Title II of the Indian Civil Rights Act, 
which includes due process and the right to a jury of one's 
peers, for all tribally imposed civil sanctions. There is no 
limit on the number of tribes that can apply and participate in 
this program.

Section 6--Administration

    Section 6 clarifies the effects of the bill, including 
provisions that explicitly state that the bill does not 
establish Indian Country within the state, nor does it confer 
criminal jurisdiction on a tribe, unless agreed to in an 
intergovernmental agreement with the State.

Section 7--Technical assistance

    Section 7 provides for expanded technical assistance by the 
Attorney General to Indian tribes within the State of Alaska.

Section 8--Funding

    Section 8 makes participating tribes eligible for DOI--
Bureau of Indian Affairs tribal court and law enforcement 
programs and funding.

Section 9--Repeal of special rule for State of Alaska

    Section 9 repeals Section 910 of the Violence Against Women 
Reauthorization Act of 2013 (18 U.S.C. 2265 note; Public Law 
113-4) which prohibits Alaska tribes--other than the Metlakatla 
Indian Community--from issuing and enforcing domestic violence 
protective orders against non-member Alaska Natives and non-
Natives.

                   Cost and Budgetary Considerations

    The following cost estimate, as provided by the 
Congressional Budget Office, dated September 12, 2014, was 
prepared for S. 1474:

                                                September 12, 2014.
Hon. Jon Tester,
Chairman, Committee on Indian Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 1474, the Alaska 
Safe Families and Villages Act of 2014.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Mark 
Grabowicz.
            Sincerely,
                                              Douglas W. Elmendorf.
    Enclosure.

S. 1474--The Alaska Safe Families and Villages Act of 2013

    Summary: S. 1474 would direct the Department of Justice 
(DOJ) to make grants to Alaskan Indian tribes to assist them in 
forming intergovernmental agreements with the state of Alaska. 
Such agreements would aim to reduce domestic violence and drug 
abuse and improve the criminal justice system. The bill also 
would authorize DOJ to provide Alaskan tribes with training and 
technical assistance on certain judicial matters.
    Assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts, CBO 
estimates that implementing S. 1474 would cost $14 million over 
the 2015-2019 period. Pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply to 
this legislation because it would not affect direct spending or 
revenues.
    S. 1474 contains an intergovernmental mandate as defined in 
the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) by requiring states to 
give full faith and credit to court orders and decrees issued 
by some Alaskan tribes. CBO estimates that the cost to comply 
with that mandate would be small and well below the threshold 
established in that act ($76 million in 2014, adjusted annually 
for inflation).
    S. 1474 also contains a private-sector mandate as defined 
in UMRA by eliminating an existing right of action against the 
state of Alaska for the actions carried out by tribes 
participating in grant programs established by the bill. CBO 
estimates that the cost of complying with the mandate would 
fall below the private-sector threshold established in UMRA 
($152 million in 2014, adjusted annually for inflation).
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary effects of S. 1474 are shown in the following table. 
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 750 
(administration of justice)
    Based on information from DOJ about the cost of 
establishing and maintaining new programs for Indian tribes in 
remote areas of Alaska, CBO estimates that implementing S. 1474 
would require funding of $16 million over the 2015-2019 period. 
We expect DOJ to use those funds to hire additional staff in 
Alaska, provide training and technical assistance to Indian 
tribes, and award grants to selected tribes. CBO assumes that 
the estimated amounts will be appropriated near the start of 
each fiscal year and that outlays will follow the historical 
rate of spending for similar activities.
    Pay-As-You-Go considerations: None.
    Estimated impact on state and local Governments: S. 1474 
contains an intergovernmental mandate as defined in UMRA by 
requiring states to give full faith and credit to court orders 
and decrees issued by some Alaskan tribes. Some, but not all, 
states currently recognize the actions of tribal courts. Based 
on information from state representatives, CBO expects that the 
tribes would be issuing relatively few orders that would need 
to be enforced by other jurisdictions and the costs for states 
to enforce those orders would be small and well below the 
threshold established in that act ($76 million in 2014, 
adjusted annually for inflation).
    Estimated impact on the private sector: S. 1474 would 
impose a private-sector mandate as defined in UMRA by 
eliminating an existing right of action against the state of 
Alaska. The legislation would authorize Indian tribes in Alaska 
that participate in the programs established by the bill to 
enforce certain state and tribal laws on Indian land. The 
legislation also would eliminate liability for the state, or 
any political subdivision of the state, for the actions carried 
out by tribes participating in those programs. The cost of the 
mandate would be the value of forgone compensation for damages 
that would have been awarded to private entities in claims 
against the state of Alaska. Because of the relatively low cap 
on damages that can be awarded in actions against Alaska, CBO 
estimates that the annual cost of complying with the mandate 
would fall below the private-sector threshold established in 
UMRA ($152 million in 2014, adjusted annually for inflation).
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Mark Grabowicz; Impact 
on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Melissa Merrell; 
Impact on the Private Sector: Marin Burnett.
    Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

               Regulatory and Paperwork 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. 1474 will 
have a minimal impact on regulatory or paperwork requirements.

                        Executive Communications

    The Committee has received no communications from the 
Executive Branch regarding S. 1474.

                        Changes in Existing Law

    In accordance with subsection 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by 
the bill S. 1474, as ordered reported, are shown as follows 
(existing law proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black 
brackets, new matter printed in italic):

     18 U.S.C. 2265 note; Public Law 113-4 (Violence Against Women 
                      Reauthorization Act of 2013)


[SEC. 910. SPECIAL RULE FOR THE STATE OF ALASKA

    (a) Expanded Jurisdiction.--In the State of Alaska, the 
amendments made by sections 904 and 905 shall only apply to the 
Indian country (as defined in section 1151 of title 18, United 
States Code) of the Metlakatla Indian Community, Annette Island 
Reserve.
    (b) Retained Jurisdiction.--The jurisdiction and authority 
of each Indian tribe in the State of Alaska under section 
2265(e) of title 18, United States Code (as in effect on the 
day before the date of enactment of this Act)--
          (1) shall remain in full force and effect; and
          (2) are not limited or diminished by this Act or any 
        amendment made by this Act.
    (c) Savings Provision.--Nothing in this Act or an amendment 
made by this Act limits or diminishes the jurisdiction of the 
State of Alaska, any subdivision of the State of Alaska, or any 
Indian tribe in the State of Alaska.]