U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Announces $20 Billion in New Phase 3 Provider Relief Funding

Submission Deadline: November 6, 2020 

On October 1, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced its decision to allocate an additional $20 billion in new funding for providers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic. The new phase three general distribution is open to providers that have already received Provider Relief Fund payments. Additionally, providers that were previously ineligible, such as those who began practicing in 2020, are now invited to apply. The phase three distributions also expand the group of behavioral health providers that are eligible for relief payments.
For more information, please click here.
NCAI Contact: Nicholas Courtney, Policy Analystncourtney@ncai.org

HHS Extends Deadline for Tribal Nations to Choose COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution

New Deadline: November 6, 2020 

On October 30, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a Dear Tribal Leader Letter announcing Operation Warp Speed approval of a one-week extension for tribal nations with healthcare facilities to determine their vaccine distribution preference. Tribal nations with healthcare facilities now have until November 6, 2020, to contact Indian Health Service (IHS) if they would like to be included in IHS’s distribution plan, or contact their State health authority if they wish to be included in the state’s vaccine distribution. 
Tribal nations are encouraged to reach out to their state health authority and their IHS Area Office COVID Vaccine Point of Contact to better understand the details of their COVID-19 plan in order to make this decision based on the most updated information available. 
Indian Health Service Area Vaccine Point of Contact

For general questions or concerns, contact the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) Federal Entities Planning Team at eocevent474@cdc.gov.NCAI Contact: Nicholas Courtney, Policy Analystncourtney@ncai.org

2020-20 Resolution

Res #: Committee: Submitted by: Title:                                 Pass → Yes No Amended/Tabled To NCAI
2020-20 Health Laura Platero Streamline Covid-19 Funding And Resources To Tribes And IHS/Tribal Health Clinics X


Have you been laid off or have your hours been reduced due to COVID-19?

You may be eligible for expanded unemployment benefits through the Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD).

This includes people who work for tribes, tribally owned businesses, small businesses, If you are denied unemployment benefits, the Unemployment Law Project (ULP) may be able to

help you . Call ULP today :

• (509) 624-9178 or toll-free at (800) 940-9178 (Spokane)

• (206) 441 -9178 or toll free at 1-888-441-9178 (Seattle)

Or, if you think you’re low -income , you can call the Northwest Justice Project’s CLEAR Hot line at 1- 888-201-1014 weekdays between 9:15 am – 12:15 pm.


• Use the UI Checklist to help you apply for unemployment.

• When applying , start with the website first before you call.

• Due to an unprecedented increase in unemployment, the Employment Security Department (ESD) is very busy. Keep calling. Don’t give up.

• Because the laws have changed and the systems to handle all the changes are still being implemented, you may be initially denied. You can appeal and a legal advocate from ULP or NJP may be able to help you.

• Stay up-to -date by signing up for ESD’sC QYID-19 actiona lerts .

Recent changes to Unemployment Insurance:

• Job search requirements are optional.

• There is no waiting week before you get benefits.

• Although the Federal Stimulus package has passed, ESD estimates that it will take them until April 18, 2020 to get the Unemployment Assistance portion of the legislation up and running. ESO will then be able to make retroactive payments for both the weekly benefit amount owed as well as the additional $600 per week.

USDA and SBA to hold Teleconference on Paycheck Protection Program for Tribes

Today, the Small Business Administration (SBA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that they will be hosting teleconference this Sunday (4/26) on accessing Round 2 of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding. Tribes, tribal leaders, tribal business concerns, and tribal stakeholders are invited to participate in this teleconference. SBA will share up-to-date information on the PPP. USDA will provide information about its funding and programmatic responses to COVID-19 and ongoing collaborative efforts with SBA. NAFOA will share relevant guidance for tribes and tribal business concerns regarding access to PPP and other COVID-19 response resources.

Sunday, April 26, 2020
5:00 – 5:45 pm ET

Toll-Free Call-in number: 844-291-5491
Passcode: 2989742 ResourcesPPP Interim Final Rule (4/24)  
 The CARES Act: Sec. 1102 – Paycheck Protection Program 
 SBA Site: The Paycheck Protection Program
 Paycheck Protection Program FAQ (4/23/20)
 Native Owned Banks


Welcome:  Diane Cullo, Director, USDA’s Office of Tribal Relations
                  Shawn Pensoneau, Assistant Administrator, Office of Native American Affairs, SBA

Remarks: Tyler Fish, Senior Policy Advisor and Tribal Liaison, Executive Office of the President, The White House

Programmatic Remarks: Small Business AdministrationUSDA Rural DevelopmentNAFOAQ&A:Tribal leaders, tribal governments, businesses, and other tribal stakeholder participants

Closing Remarks

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan program within the CARES Act that allows businesses with fewer than 500 employees to apply for loans to cover payroll and other operational expenses that have been disrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This loan is forgivable if the awardee ensures that the funds were used for their intended purposes over the covered period.

NCAI is Now Accepting Applications for COVID-19 Relief Support

With the generous support of our donors, NCAI is providing financial relief support to tribes affected by COVID-19 through Indian Country’s COVID-19 Response Fund. If you are a tribe in need you my access information on applying for support by clicking the link below.  


FEMA Advisory: Coronavirus Pandemic: Additional $100 million available to Firefighters

FEMA ADVISORY – APRIL 24, 2020                                                              Coronavirus Pandemic: Additional $100 million available to FirefightersFire service organizations nationwide with membership on the front lines in the fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will soon be able to apply for a share of $100 million in funding to purchase personal protective equipment and supplies. The funding is part of the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act through FEMA Assistance for Firefighters Grant Program (AFGP).FEMA will begin accepting applications for the Fiscal Year 2020 Assistance to Firefighters Grant – COVID-19 Supplemental Program (AFG-S) on Tuesday, April 28. The deadline for applications is May 15. AFG-S provides direct financial assistance to eligible fire departments, nonaffiliated emergency medical service organizations and state fire training academies. Those who would like to start planning their application before the application period can access the Notice of Funding Opportunity and technical assistance tools on the FEMA website. The online AFG-S Grant Program application is available through the AFGP FEMA Grants Outcomes (GO) application portal.Contact UsIf you have questions about the technical assistance tools, e-mail the AFG Grants Help Desk or call at (866) 274-0960. The AFG Help Desk is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT, Monday – Friday. If you have questions regarding this FEMA advisory, please contact FEMA Office of External Affairs, Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs Division:

Follow UsFollow FEMA on social media at: FEMA online, on Twitter @FEMA or @FEMAEspanol, on FEMA Facebook page or FEMA Espanol page, and at FEMA YouTube channel.Also, follow Administrator Pete Gaynor on Twitter @FEMA_Pete.FEMA MissionTo help people before, during, and after disasters.

Paycheck Protection Program Eligibility Expanded

Today, the Small Business Administration (SBA) published an interim final rule including a change to their guidance regarding the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that would make most tribal gaming operations eligible for the program.
The PPP is a loan program within the CARES Act that allows businesses with fewer than 500 employees to apply for loans to cover payroll and other operational expenses that have been disrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This loan is forgivable if the awardee ensures that the funds were used for their intended purposes over the covered period. Resources

The original guidance suggested that most tribal gaming operations would be ineligible to participate in the program if these businesses derived over 50% of their revenues from gaming. Tribes and states with legal gaming enterprises worked hard to oppose this limited and arbitrary criteria for inclusion within the program.  
The new interim final rule removes the criteria and states that “a business that is otherwise eligible for a PPP Loan is not rendered ineligible due to its receipt of legal gaming revenues, and 13 CFR 120.110(g) is inapplicable to PPP loans.” 
Paycheck Protection Program Tribal Strategy

  • Seek a financial services provider that is local or seek out a nationally-chartered bank like Native American Bank. 
  • Seek loans through Native owned banks and CDFI’s that are providing SBA 7(a) loans: Native Owned Banks



Defendant Steven Mnuchin, in his official capacity as Secretary of the Treasury, hereby files this memorandum in opposition to the Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction (ECF No. 3) (“Chehalis Motion” or “Chehalis Chehalis Mot.”) filed by Plaintiffs Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservatoin, Tulalip Tribes, Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians, Akiak Native Community, Asa’carsarmiut Tribe, and Aleut Community of St. Paul Island….READ THE FULL PLAINTIFF REPLY

Members of the public or media who wish to access the hearing on Plaintiffs’ Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order scheduled for today, April 24, 2020, at 3:00 p.m., may now access the hearing by dialing the court’s toll-free public access line: (877) 848-7030, access code 321-8747.

State Shelter In Place

Gov. Mike Dunleavy is allowing personal services businesses and restaurants in most parts of Alaska to reopen Friday, but with restrictions. Hair salons can only admit customers by reservation. Restaurants will have to keep distances between tables and can’t exceed 25% of their normal capacity. The city of Anchorage is delaying the new rules until Monday.Dunleavy says Alaska is not in a rush to reopen, but is responding to a low infection rate in the state and a belief that they can quickly isolate any future outbreaks. “You’ll see the numbers go up,” he said, “but you want to look at the bed capacity, the numbers recovered, and a whole host of other metrics.”Dunleavy has said that Alaskans can again schedule elective surgeries for on or after May 4 and visit their doctors for non-urgent needs.


Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a stay-at-home order on March 19 that has no set end date.However, the state will begin allowing scheduled surgeries. Newsom emphasized the surgeries being phased back in are important medical procedures like heart surgery or removing cancerous tumors that should not be neglected. Elective procedures like cosmetic surgery are still not a priority.This will begin the first phase of a return to normalcy in California.However, California is pulling back on issuing permits for events and activities, including protests, at all state facilities, according to the California Highway Patrol.Newsom announced a joint Western States Pact with Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Washington Governor Jay Inslee on April 13.


Gov. Brad Little amended his order April 15 to allow for some businesses and facilities to reopen for curbside pickup, drive-in and drive-thru service and for mailed or delivery services. It is now effective through the end of the month. The governor issued an “Order to Self-Isolate” which will expire on April 30 unless extended.Little said that the measures were working and Idaho is “truly seeing a flattening of the curve.””Our goal is for most businesses to open after the end of the month, but with the understanding that it may not be possible if there’s an upward trend in severe Covid-19 cases in Idaho between now and then,” Little said.


Gov. Steve Bullock has announced a gradual and phased reopening of the state beginning April 26 for individuals, and extending to businesses April 27. Main street and retail businesses can become operational on or after April 27 if they adhere to requirements to limit capacity and maintain strict physical distancing. Restaurants, bars, breweries, and distilleries can begin providing some in-establishment services beginning May 4.Businesses where groups gather without the ability to social distance including movie theaters, gyms and other places of assembly will remain closed.Montana’s travel quarantine will remain in effect, and out of state travelers and residents arriving from another state or country back to Montana for non-work related purposes are required to quarantine for 14 days.


Gov. Kate Brown issued an executive order directing Oregonians to stay at home that “remains in effect until ended by the governor.”Brown announced a joint Western States Pact with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on April 13.”This is not a light switch going on or off,” Brown told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on April 14. “This is going to be making a change, testing it, modeling it, seeing whether it works, and then if it does, you can make another change.”Brown said she would not ease restrictions before seeing five components in place: declining growth rate of active cases, sufficient personal protective equipment, surge capacity in hospitals, increased test capacity, contact tracingand isolating positive cases, and strategies to protect vulnerable communities.


Gov. Jay Inslee extended Washignton’s stay-at-home order until May 4, saying “We are yet to see the full toll of this virus in our state and the modeling we’ve seen could be much worse if we don’t continue what we’re doing to slow the spread.”Inslee announced a joint Western States Pact with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on April 13. Before deciding on when to reopen the state, Inslee said during an interview with Katy Tur on MSNBC that there would need to be an “enormous expansions” of coronavirus testing capabilities, a way to trace the spread in communities, and “for the president to recognize that these decisions really are going to be made by governors.”