Week 6 Checkpoint 1 by Joyce Armour
The Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma has released a letter indicating that the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development is withholding funds from the tribe in an apparent federal power play over tribal sovereignty.
The Cherokee Nation General Diane Hammons publicly released a letter that the tribe sent to HUD stating that the tribe learned of HUD??™s action when the tribal officials tried to draw approximately $33 million dollars from their HUD housing fund on August 31, and they were blocked from getting their funds.
The legislation that I think is linked to this issue is the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act, or (NAHASDA). This is the legislation that directly impacts housing for the reservation, according to the National Congress of American Indian website.
Diane Hammons writes in the letter that HUD based its decision not to release the funds on what she labels ???misinterpretation??? of Section 801 of the 2008 reauthorization of the NAHASDA. HUD??™s decision to suspend millions of dollars in payment to a tribe based on an issue involving tribal sovereignty is widely controversial in Indian country.
That is one thing that I would always worry about if I lived on a reservation and depended on the federal government for everything. The federal government could create rules that would stop payments to tribes that are based on unclear interpretations of federal tribal agreements. In my opinion, the federal government is not something I want to exclusively to depend on.