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USDA to Hold Tribal Collaboration Meetings in Tazlina and Juneau

today announced the next in a series of Tribal Collaboration Meetings will take place on Friday, August 3rd at the Tazlina Tribal Hall. Leadership from several federal agencies will meet with elected leaders from Alaska tribal governments in the Ahtna region. The meetings are in response to a memorandum signed by President Obama directing federal agencies to engage in regular and meaningful consultation and collaboration with tribal officials.
The USDA-led meetings entail face-to-face collaborations with tribal leaders to share information on federal programs and services for rural Alaska, and discuss relevant topics for their communities. The meetings will be held in designated local communities throughout the various regions of Alaska.
The Tazlina meeting will be followed by a meeting in Juneau on August 9th at the Tlingit and Haida Vocational Training & Resource Center. Previous meetings have been held in Bethel, Nome and Ketchikan. Additional meetings are being planned and will be posted with other on-going information about this project at: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/AKTribalBlog.html.
“Collaboration with Alaska’s 229 federally recognized tribes in their local areas is a considerable undertaking, but we feel this is the best way to understand the needs of Native communities. It presents an opportunity to seek their advice and provide answers to their questions on federal programs and services,” said Nordlund. “It’s our hope to strengthen the government-to-government relationship between tribal leaders and the federal government; provide an overview, by topic, of certain federal programs that have an effect on tribes; and engage in constructive dialogue, respond to questions and solicit ideas regarding federal programs,” added Nordlund.
The consultation discussions will be focused on five topics:
• Food production, availability and nutrition
• Rural housing
• Land management programs of Natural Resources Conservation Service and Forest Service
• Rural utilities (electric, telecom, solid waste, sewer and water)
• Rural economic and community development
Committed to the future of rural communities.
“USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.”
To file a complaint of discrimination write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W.,
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410, or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).
Five USDA agencies will participate in the meetings, including Rural Development, Farm Service Agency, Natural Resource Conservation Service, Forest Service, and Food and Nutrition Service.
Additionally, five other federal agencies with similar programs will be represented, including: Department of Housing and Urban Development, Small Business Administration, Economic Development Administration, Department of Energy and the Denali Commission.
For more information, please contact Tiffany Zulkosky at USDA-RD (907) 543-3858, or tiffany.zulkosky@ak.usda.gov.

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