Tribes Raising Questions On Distribution Of Coronavirus Relief

WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) – Native American leaders are raising questions about how $8 billion dollars in federal coronavirus relief for the nation’s tribes will be distributed.

One of the biggest fights is over whether for-profit Alaska Native corporations should receive a share since they’re not tribal governments – but even members of Congress are divided on the intent of the legislation.

Many tribes are relying on the infusion of federal cash after social distancing rules brought on by the pandemic forced them to shut down casinos, tourism operations and other businesses that serve as their main moneymakers.

The U.S. Treasury Department will begin distributing the money later this month and set a deadline of April 17 for tribes to submit payment information and supporting documents.

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