25 U.S.C. § 415 - U.S. Code - Unannotated Title 25. Indians § 415. Leases of restricted lands




Authorized purposes;  term;  approval by Secretary

Any restricted Indian lands, whether tribally, or individually owned, may be leased by the Indian owners, with the approval of the Secretary of the Interior, for public, religious, educational, recreational, residential, or business purposes, including the development or utilization of natural resources in connection with operations under such leases, for grazing purposes, and for those farming purposes which require the making of a substantial investment in the improvement of the land for the production of specialized crops as determined by said Secretary.  All leases so granted shall be for a term of not to exceed twenty-five years, except leases of land located outside the boundaries of Indian reservations in the State of New Mexico, leases of land on the Agua Caliente (Palm Springs) Reservation, the Dania Reservation, the Pueblo of Santa Ana (with the exception of the lands known as the “Santa Ana Pueblo Spanish Grant”), the reservation of the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, the Moapa Indian Reservation, the Swinomish Indian Reservation, the Southern Ute Reservation, the Fort Mojave Reservation, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the Burns Paiute Reservation, the Coeur d'Alene Indian Reservation, the Kalispel Indian Reservation, and land held in trust for the Kalispel Tribe of Indians, the Puyallup Tribe of Indians,, [FN1] the pueblo of Cochiti, the pueblo of Pojoaque, the pueblo of Tesuque, the pueblo of Zuni, the Hualapai Reservation, the Spokane Reservation, the San Carlos Apache Reservation, the Yavapai-Prescott Community Reservation, the Pyramid Lake Reservation, the Gila River Reservation, the Soboba Indian Reservation, the Viejas Indian Reservation, the Tulalip Indian Reservation, the Navajo Reservation, the Cabazon Indian Reservation, the Muckleshoot Indian Reservation and land held in trust for the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, the Mille Lacs Indian Reservation with respect to a lease between an entity established by the Mille Lacs Band of Chippewa Indians and the Minnesota Historical Society, leases of the the  [FN1] lands comprising the Moses Allotment Numbered 8 and the Moses Allotment Numbered 10, Chelan County, Washington, and lands held in trust for the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe of Indians, and lands held in trust for the Twenty-nine Palms Band of Luiseno Mission Indians, and lands held in trust for the Reno Sparks Indian Colony, lands held in trust for the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians, lands held in trust for the Guidiville Band of Pomo Indians of the Guidiville Indian Rancheria, lands held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, lands held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, land held in trust for the Coquille Indian Tribe, land held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, land held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians, land held in trust for the Klamath Tribes, and land held in trust for the Burns Paiute Tribe, and lands held in trust for the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, land held in trust for the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, lands held in trust for the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, land held in trust for the Fallon Paiute Shoshone Tribes, lands held in trust for the Pueblo of Santa Clara, land held in trust for the Yurok Tribe, land held in trust for the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians of the Hopland Rancheria, lands held in trust for the Yurok Tribe, lands held in trust for the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians of the Hopland Rancheria, lands held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, lands held in trust for the Cahuilla Band of Indians of California, lands held in trust for the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon, and the lands held in trust for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana, and leases to the Devils Lake Sioux Tribe, or any organization of such tribe, of land on the Devils Lake Sioux Reservation, and lands held in trust for Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo  [FN2] which may be for a term of not to exceed ninety-nine years, and except leases of land held in trust for the Morongo Band of Mission Indians which may be for a term of not to exceed 50 years, and except leases of land for grazing purposes which may be for a term of not to exceed ten years.  Leases for public, religious, educational, recreational, residential, or business purposes (except leases the initial term of which extends for more than seventy-four years) with the consent of both parties may include provisions authorizing their renewal for one additional term of not to exceed twenty-five years, and all leases and renewals shall be made under such terms and regulations as may be prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior.  Prior to approval of any lease or extension of an existing lease pursuant to this section, the Secretary of the Interior shall first satisfy himself that adequate consideration has been given to the relationship between the use of the leased lands and the use of neighboring lands;  the height, quality, and safety of any structures or other facilities to be constructed on such lands;  the availability of police and fire protection and other services;  the availability of judicial forums for all criminal and civil causes arising on the leased lands;  and the effect on the environment of the uses to which the leased lands will be subject.

Leases involving Tulalip Tribes

Any lease by the Tulalip Tribes, the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community, or the Kalispel Tribe of Indians under subsection (a) of this section, except a lease for the exploitation of any natural resource, shall not require the approval of the Secretary of the Interior (1) if the term of the lease does not exceed fifteen years, with no option to renew, (2) if the term of the lease does not exceed thirty years, with no option to renew, and the lease is executed pursuant to tribal regulations previously approved by the Secretary of the Interior, or (3) if the term does not exceed seventy-five years (including options to renew), and the lease is executed under tribal regulations approved by the Secretary under this clause (3).

Leases involving Hopi Tribe and Hopi Partitioned Lands Accommodation Agreement

Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, a lease of land by the Hopi Tribe to Navajo Indians on the Hopi Partitioned Lands may be for a term of 75 years, and may be extended at the conclusion of the term of the lease.

Definitions

For purposes of this section--

 the term “Hopi Partitioned Lands” means lands located in the Hopi Partitioned Area, as defined in section 168.1(g) of title 25, Code of Federal Regulations (as in effect on October 11, 1996);

 the term “Navajo Indians” means members of the Navajo Tribe;

 the term “individually owned Navajo Indian allotted land” means a single parcel of land that--

 is located within the jurisdiction of the Navajo Nation;

 is held in trust or restricted status by the United States for the benefit of Navajo Indians or members of another Indian tribe;  and

 was--

 allotted to a Navajo Indian;  or

 taken into trust or restricted status by the United States for an individual Indian;

 the term “interested party” means an Indian or non-Indian individual or corporation, or tribal or non-tribal government whose interests could be adversely affected by a tribal trust land leasing decision made by an applicable Indian tribe;

 the term “Navajo Nation” means the Navajo Nation government that is in existence on August 9, 1955, or its successor;

 the term “petition” means a written request submitted to the Secretary for the review of an action (or inaction) of an Indian tribe that is claimed to be in violation of the approved tribal leasing regulations;

 the term “Secretary” means the Secretary of the Interior;

 the term “tribal regulations” means regulations enacted in accordance with applicable tribal law and approved by the Secretary;

 the term “Indian tribe” has the meaning given such term in section 102 of the Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994 ( 25 U.S.C. 479a );  and

 the term “individually owned allotted land” means a parcel of land that--

 is located within the jurisdiction of an Indian tribe;  or

 is held in trust or restricted status by the United States for the benefit of an Indian tribe or a member of an Indian tribe;  and

 is allotted to a member of an Indian tribe.

Leases of restricted lands for the Navajo Nation

 Any leases by the Navajo Nation for purposes authorized under subsection (a) of this section, and any amendments thereto, except a lease for the exploration, development, or extraction of any mineral resources, shall not require the approval of the Secretary if the lease is executed under the tribal regulations approved by the Secretary under this subsection and the term of the lease does not exceed

 in the case of a business or agricultural lease, 25 years, except that any such lease may include an option to renew for up to two additional terms, each of which may not exceed 25 years;  and

 in the case of a lease for public, religious, educational, recreational, or residential purposes, 75 years if such a term is provided for by the Navajo Nation through the promulgation of regulations.

 Paragraph (1) shall not apply to individually owned Navajo Indian allotted land.

 The Secretary shall have the authority to approve or disapprove tribal regulations referred to under paragraph (1).  The Secretary shall approve such tribal regulations if such regulations are consistent with the regulations of the Secretary under subsection (a) of this section, and any amendments thereto, and provide for an environmental review process.  The Secretary shall review and approve or disapprove the regulations of the Navajo Nation within 120 days of the submission of such regulations to the Secretary.  Any disapproval of such regulations by the Secretary shall be accompanied by written documentation that sets forth the basis for the disapproval.  Such 120-day period may be extended by the Secretary after consultation with the Navajo Nation.

 If the Navajo Nation has executed a lease pursuant to tribal regulations under paragraph (1), the Navajo Nation shall provide the Secretary with--

 a copy of the lease and all amendments and renewals thereto;  and

 in the case of regulations or a lease that permits payment to be made directly to the Navajo Nation, documentation of the lease payments sufficient to enable the Secretary to discharge the trust responsibility of the United States under paragraph (5).

 The United States shall not be liable for losses sustained by any party to a lease executed pursuant to tribal regulations under paragraph (1), including the Navajo Nation.  Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to diminish the authority of the Secretary to take appropriate actions, including the cancellation of a lease, in furtherance of the trust obligation of the United States to the Navajo Nation.

 An interested party may, after exhaustion of tribal remedies, submit, in a timely manner, a petition to the Secretary to review the compliance of the Navajo Nation with any regulations approved under this subsection.  If upon such review the Secretary determines that the regulations were violated, the Secretary may take such action as may be necessary to remedy the violation, including rescinding the approval of the tribal regulations and reassuming responsibility for the approval of leases for Navajo Nation tribal trust lands.

 If the Secretary seeks to remedy a violation described in subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall--

 make a written determination with respect to the regulations that have been violated;

 provide the Navajo Nation with a written notice of the alleged violation together with such written determination;  and

 prior to the exercise of any remedy or the rescission of the approval of the regulation involved and the reassumption of the lease approval responsibility, provide the Navajo Nation with a hearing on the record and a reasonable opportunity to cure the alleged violation.

Leases involving Gila River Indian Community Reservation;  arbitration of disputes

Any contract, including a lease or construction contract, affecting land within the Gila River Indian Community Reservation may contain a provision for the binding arbitration of disputes arising out of such contract.  Such contracts shall be considered within the meaning of “commerce” as defined and subject to the provisions of section 1 of Title 9 .  Any refusal to submit to arbitration pursuant to a binding agreement for arbitration or the exercise of any right conferred by Title 9 to abide by the outcome of arbitration pursuant to the provisions of chapter 1 of Title 9, sections 1 through 14, shall be deemed to be a civil action arising under the Constitution, laws or treaties of the United States within the meaning of section 1331 of Title 28 .

Lease of tribally-owned land by Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Reservation

In general

Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section and any regulations under part 162 of Title 25, Code of Federal Regulations (or any successor regulation), subject to paragraph (2), the Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Reservation may lease to the Northern Border Pipeline Company tribally-owned land on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation for 1 or more interstate gas pipelines.

Conditions

A lease entered into under paragraph (1)--

 shall commence during fiscal year 2011 for an initial term of 25 years;

 may be renewed for an additional term of 25 years;  and

 shall specify in the terms of the lease an annual rental rate--

 which rate shall be increased by 3 percent per year on a cumulative basis for each 5-year period;  and

 the adjustment of which in accordance with clause (i) shall be considered to satisfy any review requirement under part 162 of Title 25, Code of Federal Regulations (or any successor regulation).

Tribal approval of leases

In general

At the discretion of any Indian tribe, any lease by the Indian tribe for the purposes authorized under subsection (a) (including any amendments to subsection (a)), except a lease for the exploration, development, or extraction of any mineral resources, shall not require the approval of the Secretary, if the lease is executed under the tribal regulations approved by the Secretary under this subsection and the term of the lease does not exceed--

 in the case of a business or agricultural lease, 25 years, except that any such lease may include an option to renew for up to 2 additional terms, each of which may not exceed 25 years;  and

 in the case of a lease for public, religious, educational, recreational, or residential purposes, 75 years, if such a term is provided for by the regulations issued by the Indian tribe.

Allotted land

Paragraph (1) shall not apply to any lease of individually owned Indian allotted land.

Authority of Secretary over tribal regulations

In general

The Secretary shall have the authority to approve or disapprove any tribal regulations issued in accordance with paragraph (1).

Considerations for approval

The Secretary shall approve any tribal regulation issued in accordance with paragraph (1), if the tribal regulations--

 are consistent with any regulations issued by the Secretary under subsection (a) (including any amendments to the subsection or regulations);  and

 provide for an environmental review process that includes--

 the identification and evaluation of any significant effects of the proposed action on the environment;  and

 a process for ensuring that--

 the public is informed of, and has a reasonable opportunity to comment on, any significant environmental impacts of the proposed action identified by the Indian tribe;  and

 the Indian tribe provides responses to relevant and substantive public comments on any such impacts before the Indian tribe approves the lease.

Technical assistance

The Secretary may provide technical assistance, upon request of the Indian tribe, for development of a regulatory environmental review process under subparagraph (B)(ii).

Indian Self-Determination Act

The technical assistance to be provided by the Secretary pursuant to subparagraph (C) may be made available through contracts, grants, or agreements entered into in accordance with, and made available to entities eligible for, such contracts, grants, or agreements under the Indian Self-Determination Act ( 25 U.S.C. 450 [FN3] et seq.).

Review process

In general

Not later than 120 days after the date on which the tribal regulations described in paragraph (1) are submitted to the Secretary, the Secretary shall review and approve or disapprove the regulations.

Written documentation

If the Secretary disapproves the tribal regulations described in paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include written documentation with the disapproval notification that describes the basis for the disapproval.

Extension

The deadline described in subparagraph (A) may be extended by the Secretary, after consultation with the Indian tribe.

Federal environmental review

Notwithstanding paragraphs (3) and (4), if an Indian tribe carries out a project or activity funded by a Federal agency, the Indian tribe shall have the authority to rely on the environmental review process of the applicable Federal agency rather than any tribal environmental review process under this subsection.

Documentation

If an Indian tribe executes a lease pursuant to tribal regulations under paragraph (1), the Indian tribe shall provide the Secretary with--

 a copy of the lease, including any amendments or renewals to the lease;  and

 in the case of tribal regulations or a lease that allows for lease payments to be made directly to the Indian tribe, documentation of the lease payments that are sufficient to enable the Secretary to discharge the trust responsibility of the United States under paragraph (7).

Trust responsibility

In general

The United States shall not be liable for losses sustained by any party to a lease executed pursuant to tribal regulations under paragraph (1).

Authority of Secretary

Pursuant to the authority of the Secretary to fulfill the trust obligation of the United States to the applicable Indian tribe under Federal law (including regulations), the Secretary may, upon reasonable notice from the applicable Indian tribe and at the discretion of the Secretary, enforce the provisions of, or cancel, any lease executed by the Indian tribe under paragraph (1).

Compliance

In general

An interested party, after exhausting of any applicable tribal remedies, may submit a petition to the Secretary, at such time and in such form as the Secretary determines to be appropriate, to review the compliance of the applicable Indian tribe with any tribal regulations approved by the Secretary under this subsection.

Violations

If, after carrying out a review under subparagraph (A), the Secretary determines that the tribal regulations were violated, the Secretary may take any action the Secretary determines to be necessary to remedy the violation, including rescinding the approval of the tribal regulations and reassuming responsibility for the approval of leases of tribal trust lands.

Documentation

If the Secretary determines that a violation of the tribal regulations has occurred and a remedy is necessary, the Secretary shall--

 make a written determination with respect to the regulations that have been violated;

 provide the applicable Indian tribe with a written notice of the alleged violation together with such written determination;  and

 prior to the exercise of any remedy, the rescission of the approval of the regulation involved, or the reassumption of lease approval responsibilities, provide the applicable Indian tribe with--

 a hearing that is on the record;  and

 a reasonable opportunity to cure the alleged violation.

Savings clause

Nothing in this subsection shall affect subsection (e) or any tribal regulations issued under that subsection.

[FN1]

 So in original.

[FN2]

 So in original.  Probably should be followed by a comma.

[FN3]

 So in original.  Probably should be ‘‘450f’’.





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