DOI Publishes List of Non-BIA Programs
Eligible for Inclusion in
Self-Governance Funding Agreements

On February 8, 2022, in the Federal Register, the Department of the Interior (DOI) published a notice which lists non-Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) programs, services, functions, and activities (or portions thereof) eligible to be included in self-governance funding agreements and lists the FY 2022 programmatic targets for these non-BIA bureaus.  DOI annually publishes this notice in the Federal Register.  These programs are eligible for inclusion in Funding Agreements until September 30, 2022.

Determining Eligible Programs, Services, Functions, and Activities (PSFAs).  There are two categories of PSFAs (or portions thereof) eligible to be included in self-governance funding agreements:

  • Any non-BIA PSFA administered by DOI that is “otherwise available to Indian tribes or Indians;” and
  • Any non-BIA PSFA that is of “special geographic, historical, or cultural significance” to a tribe.

Funding agreements cannot include PSFAs that are “inherently Federal” or where the statute establishing the existing program does not authorize the types of participation sought by the tribe. However, a Tribe need not be identified in the authorizing statutes in order for a PSFA or element of such PSFA to be included in a self-governance funding agreement.  While general legal and policy guidance regarding what constitutes an inherently federal function exists, the non-BIA bureaus will determine whether a specific function is “inherently Federal” on a case-by-case basis considering the totality of circumstances.

Non-BIA Bureaus.  Tribes may include PSFAs from the following non-BIA bureaus in self-governance funding agreements: Bureau of Land Management; Bureau of Reclamation; Office of Natural Resources Revenue; National Park Service; Fish and Wildlife Service; U.S. Geological Survey; Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians; and the Appraisal and Valuation Services Office.  The notice lists the FY 2022 tribal self-governance agreements with non-BIA agencies at the Department of the Interior.

Please let us know if we may provide additional information or assistance regarding this Federal Register notice.