Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation (Petitioner #82)  is seeking self-determination, self-governance, and acknowledgment through the federal recognition process. This designation will allow our tribe to acquire tribal sovereignty rights. Federal recognition allows access to further health benefits, scholarships for higher education, funding opportunities to support our wellbeing and cultural continuance.

 

The Importance of Federal Acknowledgement

FOIA Request to the OFA

 How and When to Submit Comments

Comments on the Proposed Finding (PF) or requests for a copy of the report on the PF should be submitted to:

Department of the Interior

Office of the Assistant Secretary–Indian Affairs

Attn: Office of Federal Acknowledgment

1849 C Street NW, MS–4071 MIB

Washington, DC 20240

 

Parties who submit comments on the PF should also provide a copy of their comments to:

Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation

Attn: William Leonard, Tribal Chairman

P.O. Box 186

Mariposa, CA 95338

 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

R. Lee Fleming, Director, Office of Federal Acknowledgment (OFA), (202) 513-7650

Public Comment Extension Granted until Nov. 16, 2020 

 

Office of Federal Acknowledgment Proposed Finding

SSMN Public Comment Extension Request or Withdraw of Proposed Finding

 

Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation Narrative

 

Former OFA Dr. Aldo Salerno, Ph.D. Public Comment Letter

 

Former OFA Cultural Anthropologist Public Comment 

Mark Nicholas Ph.D., Former OFA Historian Public Comment

 

Indianz.com explains OFA finding 

A 'sham': Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation being denied federal recognition

Yosemite Gateway Partners Letter of Support

Mariposa County Resolution

2017 Mariposa County Needs Assessment

CASA of Mariposa Supports SSMN

Jackson Rancheria Band of Miwuk recognize SSMN

Public Comments Received

More Comments

Lonnie Kauk Magic Line

Sierra Club Supports Federal Recognition of SSMN

Yosemite NPS Letter to OFA

Native American Heritage Commission Requirements

 

Legal Representation

Donate towards our legal fund in the hopes of obtaining Federal Recognition

Basic Chronology of the Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation (SSMN) Petition for Federal Acknowledgment:

1. April 14, 1982—SSMN [aka American Indian Council of Mariposa County] files its letter of intent to petition for federal acknowledgment.

2. March 1, 1984—SSMN files its documented petition for federal acknowledgment: “Petition to the Government of the United States From the American Indian Council of Mariposa County [aka Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation] for Acknowledgment as the Yosemite Indian Tribe”

(prepared by Lowell John Bean, Ph.D., and Sylvia Brakke, M.A.)

3. On May 1, 1985, and April 11, 1988, respectively, the Deputy to the Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs (AS-IA) issues Technical Assistance letters, to which the SSMN responded.

4. November 1, 2010—the Office of Federal Acknowledgment (OFA) places the SSMN Petition on Active Consideration.  

5. From November 1, 2010, until the AS-IA issues the Proposed Finding on November 16, 2018 (approximately 8 years), the Office of Federal Acknowledgment (OFA):

  • issues two (2) suspensions of the period of Active Consideration. The first suspension was from April 19, 2012, to December 6, 2013, totaling 596 days. The second suspension was from September 23, 2016, to January 21, 2017, totaling 120 days.

  • issues twenty-one (21) extensions of the period of Active Consideration.

NOTE: The above suspensions and extensions of the period of Active Consideration far exceeded and violated the time requirements of the federal regulations for issuance of a Proposed Finding.

6. September 8, 2017—the SSMN, through its legal counsel, sends a letter to the OFA complaining of the repeated extensions of time in violation of the federal regulations.

7. November 16, 2018—the AS-IA issues a Proposed Finding Against Federal Acknowledgment of the SSMN (“Proposed Finding”).

8. April 24, 2019—the SSMN participates in an On the Record (OTR) meeting with the OFA in Washington, D.C., to review the Proposed Finding, including its reasoning, analyses, and factual bases.

9. May 9, 2019—the SSMN submits a letter to the AS-IA, requesting a 180-day extension of the public comment period on the Proposed Finding, and proposing an alternative: that the AS-IA withdraw the Proposed Finding, recommence the period of Active Consideration, consider the SSMN petition under the standard for unambiguous previous federal acknowledgment, and issue a new Proposed Finding.

Public Comment Period Extended for 180 Days by Assistant Secretary

Congressional Letter to Assistant Secretary -Indian Affairs

 

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