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Background Information

On September 15, 1988, with the enactment of P.L. 100-472, Congress added Title III to the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (P.L. 93-638). A major purpose for the passage of this amendment was to expedite the transition away from the federal domination of Indian programs. This transition had been underway since the enactment of P.L. 93-638 on January 4, 1975. However, Congress was not satisfied with the pace of the transition and felt the need to expedite it. Title III required the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a research and demonstration project known as the Tribal Self-Governance Demonstration Project. This project was authorized to be conducted for a period not to exceed five years but was later extended for an additional three years by the passage of P.L. 102-184 on December 4, 1991. This project was a tribally driven initiative. On October 25, 1994, with the passage of P.L. 103-413, Congress further amended the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act by adding Title IV. This Title requires the Secretary of the Interior to establish and carry out a program within the Department of the Interior (DOI) to be known as Tribal Self-Governance. Each Tribe participating in the Tribal Self-Governance Demonstration Project with respect to DOI under Title III on the date of enactment of Title IV, was authorized to participate in Tribal Self-Governance. The Office of Self-Governance (OSG) is the office within DOI responsible for administering Tribal Self-Governance as it relates to Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) programs.