National Center: Now is the Time to Modernize Indian Trader Regulations

The National Center submits formal comments on U.S. Department of the Interior’s Proposed Rules on Indian Trader Regulations

April 7, 2017

MESA, AZ – The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (the National Center) formally submitted comments in response to the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rule Making on Indian Trader Regulations. During Interior’s public comment period, the National Center invited officials to hear from Indian Country at the National Reservation Economic Summit (National RES) held in Las Vegas last month. The session was among the most well-attended of all the listening sessions the department held across the country, and provided a venue for tribal leaders, entrepreneurs, and seasoned leaders to address concerns and provide feedback on how to improve the proposed regulations.

This is the first time the Department of the Interior has updated Indian Trader Regulations (25 CFR, Part 140) since 1984. The original regulations, which provide a regulatory framework for businesses on tribal lands, were implemented in 1957.

“Tribal businesses are growing at an unprecedented rate and are at the cutting edge in every sector of our economy,” said Chris James, President and CEO at the National Center. “Indian trader regulations have been well overdue for an overhaul, and modernizing the regulatory environment so that it keeps pace with native businesses is absolutely necessary. We expect that the final rule will incorporate feedback from our community, and are proud to elevate the voices of American Indian entrepreneurs and tribal leaders during the public comment period.”

In its formal comments, the National Center highlights that prior regulations are anachronistic and need modernization to meet current economic practices, while at the same time respecting the sovereignty of tribal nations. To meet these goals, the National Center is calling on the Department of the Interior to address the discriminatory effect and harm to tribal economies created by dual taxation of commercial activity and natural resource development on tribal lands. The National Center also suggests that the regulations can be updated to provide clear rules for tribal jurisdiction over business activity on Indian lands.

In all, modernizing the Trader regulations presents an important opportunity to promote and protect tribal economic development. You can view the National Center’s full comments on its website, or by clicking here.

The National Center encourages tribes and other interested parties to submit comments electronically to by the Monday, April 10 deadline.  More information about how to submit comments can be found by clicking here

About The National Center: The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. With over 40 years of assisting American Indian Tribes and their enterprises with business and economic development – we have evolved into the largest national Indian specific business organization in the nation. Our motto is: “We Mean Business For Indian Country” as we are actively engaged in helping Tribal Nations and Native business people realize their business goals and are dedicated to putting the whole of Indian Country to work to better the lives of American Indian people- both now… and for generations to come.

CONTACT: Lewis Lowe, 202-333-2234

NCAIED Contact Information

The National Center Main Office

953 E. Juanita Avenue
Mesa, AZ  85204

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