Legislation now headed to President’s desk for signature
December 18, 2020 Mesa, AZ — The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (The National Center) welcomed last night’s final action on S.212, the Indian Community Economic Enhancement Act of 2020. Sponsored by Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Chairman John Hoeven (R-ND) and Representative Norma Torres (D-CA) in the House, this bipartisan legislation will promote economic development, entrepreneurship, and improve access to capital in Indian Country by strengthening and reforming existing programs and laws. “The National Center thanks Chairman Hoeven and Representative Torres for their tireless work to pass the Indian Community Economic Enhancement Act,” said National Center President and CEO Chris James. “The need for a comprehensive, tailored plan to help aid recovery and future economic development efforts is more important now than ever. This legislation will make it easier for Indian Country businesses to access capital, economic development opportunities, and procurement and other business assistance. Getting S. 212 across the finish line just before Congress adjourns for the year is certainly welcome holiday news.” The Indian Community Economic Enhancement will expand, strengthen, and increase access to existing Indian Country business and economic development programs within the federal government by:
Elevating and funding the Office of Native American Business Development, including reporting directly to the Secretary of Commerce to ensure full operation and promote business and economic development recovery, and promote trade and tourism resumption.
Expanding application of the Buy Indian Act’s procurement authority.
Reauthorizing the Native American Programs Act with improvements to the Socio-Economic Development grant programs.
For years, the National Center worked with other Indian Country organizations to build broad support for the legislation. Previously, National Center President and CEO Chris James testified in support of the bill in front of the House Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, and Alaska Native Affairs. This is the second bill passed in recent months by both the House and Senate with strong leadership from the National Center. The Native American Business Incubators Program Act became Public Law 116-174 in October 2020.
About the National Center: The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. With over 50 years of assisting American Indian Tribes and their enterprises with business and economic development – The National Center has evolved into the largest national Indian specific business organization in the nation serving over 500 clients and providing over $4 million in contracts to its clients. The National Center has nine offices throughout the nation with its home office located in Mesa, Arizona. The National Center is 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.
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