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NORTHWEST NEWS

GOP Mailer to Oregon Voters Mimics US Census Form

The mailers are labeled "2019 Congressional District Census" and solicit donations to Trump's campaign. Voters are reminded that official U.S. Census Bureau surveys will never ask respondents for money.

Veterans Day: Honoring Those Who Serve and Continue to Serve

On this Veterans Day, the staff at The Skanner News honors all who have served and continue to serve in our nation's armed forces

FBI Reports Cybercrimes are Rising Because of Sophisticated Scams

Oregon man offers warning after he was scammed into giving away his family's life savings to criminals

Worker Who Yelled Racist Slurs at Black Customer Gets Jail

Audio and video showed a disturbing scene, said Deputy District Attorney Nicole Hermann

NEWS BRIEFS

Noose Found at Oregon Health & Science University

Surveillance cameras did not capture the area; investigator are reviewing who had access ...

DEQ Extends Air Quality Advisory Due to Stagnation

DEQ expects the air quality advisory to last until at least Tuesday, Nov. 12 ...

Forest Service Waives Fees in Honor of Veterans Day

The USDA Forest Service will waive fees at day-use recreation sites in Oregon and Washington on Monday, Nov. 11 in honor of Veterans...

Two Local Nonprofits Announced as Grant Recipients for Portland-Area Programs

Financial Beginnings Oregon and Portland Parks Foundation will receive a total of 0,000 plus leadership resources through Bank of...

State Seeks Volunteers to Rank Investments in Washington’s Outdoors

The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office is recruiting 50 volunteers to evaluate grant proposals for parks, boating...

College Football Picks: Auburn at center of all down stretch

Over the next three weeks, Auburn will be in the middle of the action even though the Tigers are outside the playoff race.No. 13 Auburn plays two top-five playoff contenders in No. 5 Georgia (No. 4 CFP) and No. 4 Alabama (No. 5 CFP) at home in November, and depending upon how the Tigers do their...

No. 11 Florida looks for different outcome against Missouri

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida linebacker David Reese insists things will be different against Missouri this week.He believes his team's preparation, focus, effort and intensity will change — along with the outcome. It's imperative if the Gators are going to make it to a New Year's...

OPINION

5 Ways Life Would be Better if it Were Always Daylight Saving Time

A Professor from the University of Washington says DST saves lives and energy and prevents crime ...

Importance of Educators of Color for Black and Brown Students

A new report examines the ways that school leaders of color’s experiences and perspectives influence how they build school culture ...

Atatiana Jefferson, Killed by Police Officer in Her Own Home

Atatiana Jefferson, a biology graduate who worked in the pharmaceutical industry and was contemplating becoming a doctor, lived a life of purpose that mattered ...

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

College Football Picks: Auburn at center of all down stretch

Over the next three weeks, Auburn will be in the middle of the action even though the Tigers are outside the playoff race.No. 13 Auburn plays two top-five playoff contenders in No. 5 Georgia (No. 4 CFP) and No. 4 Alabama (No. 5 CFP) at home in November, and depending upon how the Tigers do their...

No. 11 Florida looks for different outcome against Missouri

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida linebacker David Reese insists things will be different against Missouri this week.He believes his team's preparation, focus, effort and intensity will change — along with the outcome. It's imperative if the Gators are going to make it to a New Year's...

Junkyard Dawgs: No. 5 Georgia's stellar D a team effort

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Kirby Smart has coached some stellar defenses.This might be one of his best.Never mind the lack of star power."They've got some of those same traits as the good defenses I've been able to be around," the Georgia coach said Monday. "But this group probably doesn't have that...

ENTERTAINMENT

With success and offers, Sterling K. Brown learns to say no

NEW YORK (AP) — With a hit TV series, awards, plus film and TV opportunities, Sterling K. Brown admits he’s experienced “a lot of pinch me moments” in recent years. But, with all those possibilities and offers, the 43-year-old has also learned a very important...

Justices could return cable TV race bias suit to lower court

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court seems likely to overturn a lower court ruling in favor of an African-American media mogul and comedian who’s suing cable giant Comcast for racial discrimination.The justices appeared to be in broad agreement Wednesday that an appeals court applied...

Review: Driver brings 6,700 pages to life in ‘The Report’

Of all the statistics involving the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report on the CIA’s post-9/11 detention and interrogation program — better known as the “Torture Report” — let’s focus on this for a second: It had 38,000 footnotes.This mammoth...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Astros sign stealing charges latest to tarnish reputation

HOUSTON (AP) — Not too long ago, the Houston Astros were the feel-good story of baseball. Led by their...

Female country acts across generations unite at CMA Awards

Female acts may be scarce on contemporary country radio and the country charts, but they brought girl power to the...

Vote totals set to be double-checked in Kentucky gov’s race

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Republican Gov. Matt Bevin could face a legacy-defining decision when the vote totals...

Astros sign stealing charges latest to tarnish reputation

HOUSTON (AP) — Not too long ago, the Houston Astros were the feel-good story of baseball. Led by their...

Female country acts across generations unite at CMA Awards

Female acts may be scarce on contemporary country radio and the country charts, but they brought girl power to the...

Vote totals set to be double-checked in Kentucky gov’s race

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Republican Gov. Matt Bevin could face a legacy-defining decision when the vote totals...

McMenamins
Rob Capriccioso Indian Country

White HouseIn June 2012 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Salazar v. Ramah Navajo Chapter that the federal government must pay for the full contract support costs (CSC) incurred by tribes while providing healthcare and other governmental services for their tribal citizens through Indian Self-Determination Act contract agreements.

In opposition to that ruling, the White House shared with Congress late this summer a continuing resolution budget proposal that would allow the federal government to forgo paying millions of dollars worth of CSC to tribes.

The proposal authorizes the Indian Health Service (IHS) and the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) to limit how much each tribe would be paid for CSC. Tribes would be left to pay for any CSC funding not appropriated by Congress.

Tribal leaders who have reviewed the plan say it amounts to a tribe-by-tribe federal cap on CSC funding that would wipe out tribal legal claims and put tribes in the difficult position of being required to spend money to administer contract support programs without providing them the funding to do so.

Forty-five tribes and tribal organizations sent a letter September 3 to congressional members of the Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, asking them to eliminate the administration's request from their pending appropriations bill.

"If this language is enacted, once again Indian tribes would be the only government contractors in the Nation whom the United States could cheat with impunity," the tribal leaders wrote. "Worse yet, the Administration developed this plan in secret, without any consultation with the tribes and without any consultation with the authorizing committees."

Tribal leaders have also argued that the administration's plan may be unconstitutional under the Fifth Amendment, as well as illegal under the Appropriations Clause of the Constitution, because the proposed policy changes tell the tribes they must do their contracted work and must accept less-than-full payment.

President Barack Obama's 2014 budget request falls copy40 million short of what is required to honor all tribal contracts with the IHS, and copy2 million short of what is required to honor all BIA contracts, according to testimony provided to Congress in April.

Congress, which is scheduled to be in session for only nine days in September, must pass a continuing resolution by October 1 to avoid a partial government shutdown, so time is short for a tribal leaders' case against the plan to make waves.

After Obama released a similar proposal in April, tribal leaders and some members of Congress balked, and administration leaders promised to conduct consultation with tribes on the matter—promises that have not been kept, according to tribal affairs experts

"It is absolutely awful and shockingly disappointing to tribal advocates," said Philip Baker-Shenk, an Indian affairs lawyer with Holland & Knight, of the new plan. "While unfunded mandates like this are banned for everybody else, apparently Office of Management and Budget officials believe Indian tribes are the exception to that rule. Because the Obama CSC cap would upend existing law, it does not belong on a [continuing resolution] that, by definition, extends current law into the future. It should be abandoned and rejected as yet another bad idea thrown at Indian country."

Lloyd Miller, an Indian affairs lawyer with Sonosky Chambers involved in several tribal contract support disputes with the federal government, places blame squarely on Yvette Roubideaux, director of the IHS, for failing to make a forceful case that these costs must be paid. He says Roubideaux has acted as if these contracts were just another program to be balanced against other programs or activities her agency felt were more important, including internal spending.

"I certainly put this at the feet of the director," Miller said. "She has complete control over this issue. She is a free agent here; she has control over how she manages her budget, and she consistently chooses other so-called priorities.

"Dr. Roubideaux has to pay her bills, and she doesn't like that," Miller added. "So she is seeking ways to avoid paying her bills, and this effort is impairing the ability of tribes to hire health service providers. When she underpays those costs, she forces tribes to take money away from the other areas she has prioritized."

Roubideaux' office has not responded to requests for comment.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), the ranking member of the Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, told Indian Country Today Media Network that she is "disappointed" by the administration's request, but "determined" not to allow Congress to pass it.

"I continue to have great concerns with the Obama administration's disregard of tribal rights and self-determination, even after being reinforced by the United States Supreme Court in its Ramah decision," Murkowski said. "Within the context of the federal budget, the tribal budget is miniscule – and does not deliver justice to our nation's first people in terms of contract support costs. Much more must be done to administer intelligent medical care to a population that – whether it's the troubling diabetes, suicide or alcoholism rates – face tremendous health challenges."

Murkowski previously said at an April 25 hearing of the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs that "self-determination contracts are the core of our nation's federal trust relationship with Indian tribes."

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