[House Report 108-742]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



108th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     108-742
======================================================================

 
         NATIVE HAWAIIAN GOVERNMENT REORGANIZATION ACT OF 2004

                                _______
                                

October 6, 2004.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

  Mr. Pombo, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 4282]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 4282) to express the policy of the United States 
regarding the United States relationship with Native Hawaiians 
and to provide a process for the recognition by the United 
States of Native Hawaiian governing entity, and for other 
purposes, having considered the same, report favorably thereon 
without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 4282 is to express the policy of the 
United States regarding the United States relationship with 
Native Hawaiians and to provide a process for the recognition 
by the United States of the Native Hawaiian governing entity, 
and for other purposes.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    On January 17, 1893, with the assistance of the United 
States Minister and U.S. Marines, the government of the Kingdom 
of Hawaii was overthrown. One hundred years later, a resolution 
extending an apology on behalf of the United States to Native 
Hawaiians for the illegal overthrow of the Native Hawaiian 
government and calling for a reconciliation of the relationship 
between the United States and Native Hawaiians was enacted into 
law (Public Law 103-150). What is often now called ``The 
Apology Resolution'' acknowledges that the overthrow of the 
Kingdom occurred with the active participation of agents and 
citizens of the United States and further acknowledges that the 
Native Hawaiian people never directly relinquished to the 
United States their claims to their inherent sovereignty as a 
people over their national lands, either through their 
government or through a plebiscite or referendum.
    In December 1999, the Departments of the Interior and 
Justice initiated a process of reconciliation in response to 
the Apology Resolution by conducting meetings in Native 
Hawaiian communities on each of the principal islands in the 
State of Hawaii, culminating in two days of open hearings. The 
resulting draft report was issued on October 23, 2000, by the 
two departments and was called ``From Mauka to Makai: The River 
of Justice Must Flow Freely.'' The principal recommendation 
contained in the Clinton Administration's report is set forth 
below:

          Recommendation 1. It is evident from the 
        documentation, statements, and views received during 
        the reconciliation process undertaken by Interior and 
        Justice pursuant to Public Law 103-150 (1993), that the 
        Native Hawaiian people continue to maintain a distinct 
        community and certain governmental structures and they 
        desire to increase their control over their own affairs 
        and institutions. As a matter of justice and equity, 
        this report recommends that the Native Hawaiian people 
        should have self-determination over their own affairs 
        within the framework of Federal law, as do Native 
        American tribes. For generations, the United States has 
        recognized the rights and promoted the welfare of 
        Native Hawaiians as an indigenous people within our 
        Nation through legislation, administrative action, and 
        policy statements. To safeguard and enhance Native 
        Hawaiian self-determination over their lands, cultural 
        resources, and internal affairs, the Departments 
        believe Congress should enact further legislation to 
        clarify Native Hawaiians' political status and to 
        create a framework for recognizing a government-to-
        government relationship with a representative Native 
        Hawaiian governing body. Within this report, the 
        Departments recommended ``that the Native Hawaiian 
        people should have self-determination over their own 
        affairs within the framework of Federal law, as do 
        Native American tribes.'' Further, they stated that 
        ``Congress should enact further legislation to clarify 
        Native Hawaiians'' political status and to create a 
        framework for recognizing a government-to-government 
        relationship with a representative Native Hawaiian 
        governing body.''

    H.R. 4282 provides a process for the reorganization of a 
Native Hawaiian government for the purpose of carrying on the 
government-to-government relationship mentioned in the report 
above. In particular, the Secretary of the Interior must 
certify that the organic governing documents of the Native 
Hawaiian government are consistent with federal law and the 
trust relationship between the United States and tribes of the 
United States. This certification is important as the Supreme 
Court issued a ruling in the case of Rice v. Cayetano wherein 
the quasi-sovereign state agency, the Office of Hawaiian 
Affairs, was to open the election of its trustees to all of the 
citizens of the State of Hawaii who are otherwise eligible to 
vote in statewide elections. This, in essence, meant that the 
native people of Hawaii were divested of the mechanism that was 
established under the Hawaii State Constitution that had 
enabled them to give expression to their rights as native 
people to self-determination and self-governance.
    The current Office of Hawaiian Affairs in Hawaii has 
existed since 1978 and will remain relevant with the enactment 
of H.R. 4282. This is because the Office administers programs 
and services with revenues derived from lands which were ceded 
back to the State of Hawaii upon its admission into the United 
States. The dedication of these revenues reflects the 
provisions of the 1959 Hawaii Admissions Act, which provides 
that the ceded lands and the revenues derived therefrom should 
be held by the State of Hawaii as a public trust for five 
purposes--one of which is the betterment of the conditions of 
Native Hawaiians. The Admissions Act also provided that the new 
State assumes a trust responsibility for approximately 203,500 
acres of land that had previously been set aside under federal 
law in 1921 for Native Hawaiians in the Hawaiian Homes 
Commission Act.
    This legislation will continue to reflect the separate 
funding authorities that Native Hawaiians have enjoyed since 
1910; since this date, Congress has enacted over 160 statutes 
designed to address the conditions of Native Hawaiians. Thus 
appropriations for Native Hawaiian programs have always been 
separately secured and have had no impact on program funding 
for American Indians or Alaska Natives.
    It is also important to note that some have questioned 
whether the reorganization of a Native Hawaiian government 
might have implications for gaming that is conducted under the 
authority of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA). The scope 
of gaming that can be conducted under IGRA is determined by the 
law of the State in which the Indian lands are located. The 
U.S. Supreme Court has held that State laws which criminally 
prohibit certain forms of gaming apply on Indian lands. 
Moreover, there are no Indian tribes in the State of Hawaii, 
nor are there any Indian reservations or Indian lands. Further, 
Hawaii is one of only two States in the Union (along with Utah) 
that criminally prohibit all forms of gaming. Accordingly, a 
reorganized Native Hawaiian government could not conduct any 
form of gaming in the State of Hawaii.
    H.R. 4282 is legislation similar to H.R. 617, introduced by 
Congressman Neil Abercrombie during the 107th Congress. Similar 
legislation was also introduced during previous Congresses. The 
Committee, along with the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, held 
five days of hearings on this issue during the second session 
of the 106th Congress, and in the 107th Congress, H.R. 617 was 
reported to the House of Representatives by a voice vote.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 4282 was introduced on May 5, 2004, by Congressman 
Neil Abercrombie (D-HI). The bill was referred to the Committee 
on Resources. On September 15, 2004, the Full Resources 
Committee met to consider the bill. No amendments were offered 
and H.R. 4282 was then ordered favorably reported to the House 
of Representatives by unanimous consent.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    Cited as the ``Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization 
Act of 2004.''

Section 2. Findings

    This section sets forth Congress' findings. Findings (1) 
through (4) reflect Congress' recognition of Native Hawaiians 
as the native people of the United States and Hawaii. Findings 
(5) through (7) reflect Congress' determination of the need to 
address the conditions of Native Hawaiians through the Hawaiian 
Homes Commission Act of 1920. Findings (8) and (9) reflect 
Congress' establishment of the Ceded Lands Trust as a condition 
of statehood for the State of Hawaii. Finding (10) reflects the 
importance of the Hawaiian Home Lands and Ceded Lands to Native 
Hawaiians as a foundation for the Native Hawaiian community for 
the cultural survival of the Native Hawaiian people. Finding 
(11) notes that Native Hawaiians have maintained other 
distinctly native areas. Findings (12) through (14) reflect the 
effect of the Apology Resolution. Findings (15) through (19) 
reflect the Native Hawaiian community as a ``distinctly'' 
native community. Finding (20) reflects the position of the 
United States before the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Rice 
v. Cayetano. Findings (21) and (22) reaffirm the special trust 
relationship between the Native Hawaiian people and the United 
States.

Section 3. Definitions

    This section sets forth definitions of terms used in the 
bill. Defined terms are: Aboriginal, Indigenous, Native People; 
Apology Resolution; Ceded Lands; Indigenous, Native People; 
Interagency Coordinating Group; Native Hawaiian; Native 
Hawaiian Governing Entity; and Secretary.

Section 4. United States policy and purpose

    This section reaffirms that Native Hawaiians are an 
aboriginal, indigenous, native people with whom the United 
States has a trust relationship and states Congress' intent to 
provide a process for federal recognition of a Native Hawaiian 
governing entity for purposes of continuing a government-to-
government relationship.

Section 5. United States Office for Native Hawaiian Relations

    This provision authorizes the establishment of the United 
States Office for Native Hawaiian Relations within the Office 
of the Secretary of the Department of the Interior. The United 
States Office for Native Hawaiian Relations is charged with: 
(1) effectuating and coordinating the special trust 
relationship between the Native Hawaiian people and the United 
States; (2) continuing the process of reconciliation; (3) 
conducting meaningful, regular, and appropriate consultation 
with the Native Hawaiian people and Native Hawaiian governing 
entity regarding any actions that may have the potential to 
significantly affect Native Hawaiian resources, rights, or 
lands; (4) consulting with the Native Hawaiian Coordinating 
Group, other federal agencies, and with the State of Hawaii on 
policies, practices, and proposed actions affecting Native 
Hawaiian resources, rights, or lands; and (5) preparing and 
submitting to the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, Senate 
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, and House Resources 
Committee an annual report detailing the Interagency 
Coordinating Group's activities regarding the reconciliation 
process, consultation with the Native Hawaiian people, and 
recommendations of necessary changes to existing federal 
statutes.
    The United States Office for Native Hawaiian Relations 
would serve as a liaison between the Native Hawaiian people and 
the United States for the purposes of assisting with the 
process of federal recognition of the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity, continuing the reconciliation process, and ensuring 
proper consultation with the Native Hawaiian people for any 
federal policy impacting Native Hawaiians. The United States 
Office for Native Hawaiian Relations would not assume the 
responsibility or authority for any of the federal programs 
established to address the conditions of Native Hawaiians. All 
federal programs established and administered by federal 
agencies will remain with those agencies.

Section 6. Native Hawaiian Interagency Coordinating Group

    This section recognizes that because federal programs 
authorized to address the conditions of Native Hawaiians are 
largely administered by federal agencies other than the 
Department of the Interior there is a need to establish an 
Interagency Coordinating Group to be composed of officials from 
each federal agency that administers Native Hawaiian programs, 
establishes or implements policies that affect Native 
Hawaiians, or whose actions may significantly or uniquely 
impact on Native Hawaiian resources, rights, or lands. The 
primary responsibility of the Interagency Coordinating Group is 
to coordinate federal policies or actions that affect Native 
Hawaiians or impact Native Hawaiian resources, rights, or 
lands. The Interagency Coordinating Group is also charged with 
assuring that each federal agency develop a Native Hawaiian 
consultation policy and participate in the development of the 
report to Congress.

Section 7. Process for the recognition of the Native Hawaiian governing 
        entity

    This section recognizes the right of the Native Hawaiian 
people to organize for their common welfare and to adopt 
appropriate organic governing documents. This section provides 
the process for federal recognition of the Native Hawaiian 
governing entity.
    Upon the organization of the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity, the adoption of organic governing documents, and the 
election of officers of the Native Hawaiian governing entity, 
the duly elected officers of the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity submit the organic governing documents to the Secretary 
of the Interior for certification. Within 90 days of the 
submission of the organic governing documents, the Secretary 
shall certify that the organic governing documents: establish 
the criteria for citizenship in the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity; were adopted by a majority vote of the citizens of the 
Native Hawaiian governing entity; provide for the exercise of 
governmental authorities by the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity; provide for the Native Hawaiian governing entity to 
negotiate with federal, State, and local governments, and other 
entities; prevent the sale, disposition, lease, or encumbrance 
of lands, interests in lands, or other assets of the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity without the consent of the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity; provide for the protection of the 
civil rights of the citizens of the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity and those subject to the authority of the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity; and are consistent with applicable 
federal law and the special trust relationship between the 
United States and Native Hawaiians.
    It is also important to note that one of the changes in 
H.R. 4282 from previous versions of this legislation centers on 
the creation of a Native Hawaiian Commission that will prepare, 
maintain, and certify a roll of Native Hawaiian community 
members. Those included on this roll will participate in the 
reorganization of the Native Hawaiian governing entity and will 
be included in the Native Hawaiian definition in Section 3 (8). 
Previously this role was to be certified by the Secretary of 
the Interior.
    Within 90 days of the submission of the organic governing 
documents, the Secretary shall also certify that the State of 
Hawaii supports the recognition of the Native Hawaiian 
governing entity by the United States as evidenced by a 
resolution or act of the Hawaii State Legislature.
    If the Secretary, after receipt of the organic governing 
documents, determines that the documents are deficient in 
addressing the matters stipulated under Section 6(b)(2)(A)(i) 
through (vii), or determines that any provision of the organic 
governing documents does not comply with any other applicable 
federal law, the Secretary shall return the organic governing 
documents to the Native Hawaiian governing entity. The 
Secretary shall identify to the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity each provision that is determined to be deficient or in 
noncompliance and provide a justification for each finding. The 
Native Hawaiian governing entity is authorized to amend the 
organic governing documents to ensure their compliance with 
this Act and may resubmit the organic governing documents to 
the Secretary for certification.
    The certifications shall be deemed to have been made if the 
Secretary has not acted within 90 days of the date that the 
duly elected officers of the Native Hawaiian governing entity 
have submitted the organic governing documents of the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity to the Secretary.
    Upon election of the Native Hawaiian governing entity's 
officers and the certifications (or deemed certifications) by 
the Secretary, federal recognition is extended to the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity.

Section 8. Reaffirmation of delegation of federal authority; 
        negotiations; claims

    This section reaffirms the United States' delegation of 
authority to the State of Hawaii in the Admissions Act to 
address the conditions of the indigenous, native people of 
Hawaii. Upon federal recognition of the Native Hawaiian 
governing entity, the United States is authorized to negotiate 
with the State of Hawaii and the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity regarding the transfer to the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity of lands, resources and assets dedicated to Native 
Hawaiians.
    This section provides that nothing in this Act is intended 
to serve as a settlement of any claims against the United 
States.

Section 9. Applicability of certain federal laws

    This section states that nothing in this Act shall be 
construed as an authorization for the Native Hawaiian governing 
entity to conduct gaming activities under the authority of the 
Indian Gaming Regulatory Act or for eligibility to participate 
in any programs and services provided by the Bureau of Indian 
Affairs.

Section 10. Severability

    This section provides that should any section or provision 
of this Act be deemed invalid, the remaining sections, 
provisions, and amendments shall continue in full force and 
effect.

Section 11. Authorization of appropriations

    This section authorizes the appropriation of such sums as 
may be necessary to carry out the activities authorized.

            COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

    Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee on Resources' oversight findings and recommendations 
are reflected in the body of this report.

                   CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT

    Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United 
States grants Congress the authority to enact this bill.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(2) of rule XIII of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and 
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be 
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(3)(B) 
of that rule provides that this requirement does not apply when 
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted 
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
    2. Congressional Budget Act. As required by clause 3(c)(2) 
of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, this 
bill does not contain any new budget authority, spending 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in 
revenues or tax expenditures.
    3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by 
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goal or 
objective of this bill is to express the policy of the United 
States regarding the United States relationship with Native 
Hawaiians, to provide a process for the reorganization of a 
Native Hawaiian government and the recognition by the United 
States of the Native Hawaiian government, and for other 
purposes.
    4. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate. Under clause 
3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974, the Committee has received the following cost estimate 
for this bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office:

H.R. 4282--Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2004

    H.R. 4282 would establish a process for a Native Hawaiian 
government to be constituted and recognized by the federal 
government. CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 4282 would 
cost nearly $1 million annually in fiscal years 2005-2007 and 
less than $500,000 in each subsequent year, assuming the 
availability of appropriated funds. Enacting the bill would not 
affect direct spending or revenues.
    H.R. 4282 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments. 
Enacting this legislation could lead to the creation of a new 
government to represent Native Hawaiians. The transfer of any 
land or other assets to this new government, including land now 
controlled by the state of Hawaii, would be the subject of 
future negotiations.
    The bill would establish the United States Office for 
Native Hawaiian Relations within the Department of the Interior 
(DOI) to consult and coordinate the relationship with the 
Native Hawaiian governing entity. Based on information from 
DOI, CBO expects this office would require up to three full-
time personnel. H.R. 4282 also would establish the Native 
Hawaiian Interagency Coordinating Group, consisting of 
officials from interested agencies. Finally, the bill would 
create a nine-member commission responsible for creating and 
certifying a roll of adult Native Hawaiians. Based upon 
information from DOI, CBO expects that this commission would 
need three years and three full-time staff to complete its 
work.
    On May 30, 2003, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for S. 
344, the Native Hawaiian Recognition Act of 2003, as ordered 
reported by the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, on May 14, 
2003. On May 3, 2004, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for S. 
344 as ordered reported by the Senate Committee on Indian 
Affairs on April 21, 2004. Both versions of S. 344 are similar 
to H.R. 4282; however, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 
4282 would have a higher cost because it would authorize the 
commission that would be tasked to create and certify a roll of 
Native Hawaiians to hire full-time staff and to procure 
temporary services.
    The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Mike Waters 
(for federal costs) and Marjorie Miller (for the impact on 
state, local, and tribal governments). This estimate was 
approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant Director for 
Budget Analysis.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 104-4

    This bill contains no unfunded mandates.

                PREEMPTION OF STATE, LOCAL OR TRIBAL LAW

    This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or 
tribal law.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing 
law.

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

    The purpose of H.R. 4282 is to authorize a process for the 
reorganization of the Native Hawaiian government and for the 
reaffirmation by the United States of the special political and 
legal relationship between the United States and the Native 
Hawaiian governing entity for purposes of carrying on a 
government-to-government relationship with the Native Hawaiian 
government. This relationship is legally analogous to the 
special relationship that exists between the United States and 
Indian tribal governments under the Indian Commerce Clause of 
the United States Constitution and other authorities.
    However, H.R. 4282 reflects a new paradigm in which the 
Native Hawaiian government, the State of Hawai`i, and the 
United States will have the flexibility to develop--through a 
process of negotiations--a structured framework for the 
governmental powers and authorities, including civil and 
criminal jurisdiction, that will be exercised by each 
government. Thereafter, it is anticipated that the governmental 
parties will seek legislation to implement their agreements, 
including amendments to existing State and Federal laws, as 
well as necessary amendments to the State's constitution. To 
this end, the legislation does not import wholesale the 
existing body of Federal Indian Law, but instead contemplates 
that the governmental parties to these negotiations will shape 
their relationships, and their rights and responsibilities, in 
a manner that is appropriate to contemporary circumstances in 
the State of Hawai`i while remaining within the broad framework 
of a government-to-government relationship with the United 
States.
Historical background
    On January 17, 1863, the government of the Kingdom of 
Hawai`i was overthrown by a group of American citizens and 
others, who acted with the support of U.S. Minister John 
Stephens and a contingent of U.S. Marines from the U.S.S. 
Boston. Supporters of this revolutionary movement organized a 
government calling itself the Republic of Hawaii, which was 
later recognized by the United States as the government of the 
Hawaiian Islands. Notwithstanding strong opposition from within 
the Native Hawaiian community, officials of the Republic of 
Hawai`i successfully sought to have the Hawaiian Islands 
annexed by the United States. In August 1898, Congress adopted 
the Joint Resolution for Annexing the Hawaiian Islands to the 
United States.\1\ Soon thereafter, Congress passed the Hawai`i 
Organic Act,\2\ establishing a government for the newly created 
Territory of Hawai`i. In 1959, Hawai`i was admitted to the 
Union as the Fiftieth State.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\ 30 Stat. 750 (August 12, 1898).
    \2\ 31 Stat. 141 (April 30, 1900).
    \3\ Hawaii Admission Act, Pub. L. 86-3, 73 Stat. 4 (March 18, 
1959).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    One hundred years after the U.S.-supported overthrow of the 
Kingdom of Hawai`i, a resolution extending an apology on behalf 
of the United States to Native Hawaiians for the illegal 
overthrow of the Native Hawaiian government and calling for a 
reconciliation of the relationship between the United States 
and Native Hawaiians was enacted into law.\4\ The Apology 
Resolution acknowledges that the overthrow of the Kingdom of 
Hawai`i occurred with the active participation of agents and 
citizens of the United States and further acknowledges that the 
Native Hawaiian people never directly relinquished to the 
United States, their claims to their inherent sovereignty as a 
people over their national lands, either through their 
government or through a plebiscite or referendum.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \4\ Pub. L. 103-150, 107 Stat. 1510 (November 23, 1993) (the 
``Apology Resolution'').
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Federal legislation on behalf of Native Hawaiians
    Since 1910, Congress has enacted into law more than 160 
statutes which, in whole or in part, establish programs and 
services intended to address the special circumstances of 
Native Hawaiians. Congress first explicitly recognized the 
existence of a special or trust relationship between the Native 
Hawaiian people and the United States with the enactment in 
1921 of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \5\ 42 Stat. 108 (July 9, 1921).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Proponents of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act noted the 
decreasing numbers and poor economic status of Native 
Hawaiians. Prior to European contact, it was estimated that 
there were 400,000 Native Hawaiians in the Hawaiian Islands. By 
1919, the Native Hawaiian population had been reduced to 
22,600, and many were concluding that the native people of 
Hawai`i were a ``dying race,'' and that if they were to be 
saved from extinction, they must have the means of regaining 
their connection to the land, the `aina. In hearings on the 
Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, Secretary of the Interior 
Franklin Lane explained the trust relationship on which the 
statute was premised: ``One thing that impressed me * * * was 
the fact that the natives of the islands who are our wards, I 
should say, and for whom in a sense we are trustees, are 
falling off rapidly in numbers and many of them are in 
poverty.'' \6\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \6\ H.R. Rep. No. 66-839, at 4 (1920).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole, the Territory's sole 
delegate to Congress, testified before the full U.S. House of 
Representatives: ``The Hawaiian race is passing. And if 
conditions continue to exist as they do today, this splendid 
race of people, my people, will pass from the face of the 
earth.'' \7\ Secretary Lane attributed the declining population 
to health problems like those faced by the ``Indian in the 
United States'' and concluded the Nation must provide similar 
remedies.\8\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \7\ 59 Cong. Rec. 7453 (1920).
    \8\ H.R. Rep. No. 66-839, at 5.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Hawaiian Homes Commission Act set aside approximately 
203,500 acres of public lands (former Crown and Government 
lands ceded by the Republic of Hawai`i to the United States 
upon Annexation) for homesteading by Native Hawaiians. The Act 
provides that the lessee must be a Native Hawaiian, who is 
entitled to a lease for a term of ninety-nine years, provided 
that the lessee occupies and uses or cultivates the tract 
within one year after the lease is entered into. A restriction 
on alienation, like those imposed on Indian lands subject to 
allotment, was included in the lease. Also like the general 
allotment acts affecting Indians, the leases were intended to 
encourage rural homesteading so that Native Hawaiians would 
leave the urban areas and return to rural subsistence or 
commercial farming and ranching. In February, 1923, the 
Congress amended the Act to authorize one-half acre residence 
lots and to provide for home construction loans. Thereafter, 
the demand for residential lots far exceeded the demand for 
agricultural or pastoral lots.
    In enacting the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, Congress 
compared the legislation to ``previous enactments granting 
Indians * * * special privileges in obtaining and using the 
public lands.'' \9\ In testimony before Congress, Interior 
Secretary land explicitly analogized the relationship between 
the United States and Native Hawaiians to the trust 
relationship between the United States and other Native 
Americans, explaining that special programs for Native 
Hawaiians are fully supported by history and ``an extension of 
the same idea'' that supports such programs for Indians.\10\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \9\ H.R. Rep. No. 66-839, at 11 (1920).
    \10\ Hearings before the Committee on the Territories, House of 
Representatives, 66th Cong., 2d Sess., on Proposed Amendments to the 
Organic Act of the Territory of Hawaii, February 3, 4, 5, 7, and 10, 
1920, at 129-30 (statement of Secretary Lane that ``[w]e have got the 
right to set aside these lands for this particular body of people, 
because I think the history of the islands will justify that before any 
tribunal in the world,'' and rejecting the argument that legislation 
aimed at ``this distinct race'' would be unconstitutional because ``it 
would be an extension of the same idea'' as that established in dealing 
with Indians); see also id. at 127 (colloquy between Secretary Lane and 
Representative Monahan, analogizing status of Native Hawaiians to that 
of Indians), and at 167-70 (colloquy between Representative Curry, 
Chair of the Committee, and Representatives Dowell, and Humphreys, 
making the same analogy and rejecting the objection that ``we have no 
government or tribe to deal with here'').
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Congress again recognized the special status of Native 
Hawai`ians when Hawai`i gained Statehood in 1959. As a 
condition of admission into the Union, section 4 of the Hawai`i 
Admission Act required the new State to assume management of 
the homesteading program established under the Hawaiian Homes 
Commission Act and to adopt that Federal law, as amended, as a 
provision of its Constitution. The Admission Act imposed a 
public trust on the lands which were ceded to the United States 
by the Republic of Hawai`i upon annexation by the United States 
in 1898 and which were conveyed to the State of Hawai`i in 
trust upon its admission into the Union of States, requiring 
the State to manage these lands and any revenues derived from 
them, for five specified purposes, one of which was ``the 
betterment of the conditions of native Hawai`ians, as defined 
in the Hawai`ian Homes Commission Act, 1920, as amended.'' \11\ 
The Admission Act further provided that the use of these lands 
and revenues for any use other than the five specified uses 
``shall constitute breach of trust for which suit may be 
brought by the United States.'' \12\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \11\ Hawai`i Admission Act, Sec. 5(f).
    \12\ Id.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Hawai`i Admission Act provided for explicit delegations 
of Federal authority to be assumed by the new State and 
mandated that the State act as a trustee for Native Hawai`ians. 
The United States did not absolve itself from all further 
responsibility in the administration or amendment of the 
Hawai`ian Homes Commission Act, nor did it divest itself of an 
ongoing role in overseeing the use of ceded lands and the 
income or proceeds therefrom. Sections 4 and 5 of the Hawai`i 
Admission Act clearly contemplate a continuing Federal role, as 
do sections 204 and 223 of the Hawai`ian Homes Commission Act, 
which provide that the consent of the Secretary of the Interior 
must be obtained for certain exchanges of trust lands and 
reserved to Congress the right to amend that Act. The Federal 
and State courts have repeatedly concluded that the United 
States retains the authority to bring an enforcement action 
against the State of Hawai`i for breach of the trust 
responsibilities set forth in section 5 of the Admission 
Act,\13\ and these responsibilities are enforceable by the 
Native Hawai`ian beneficiaries themselves.\14\
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    \13\ See e.g., Han v. United States, 45 F.3d 333 (9th Cir. 1995).
    \14\ See, e.g., Keaukaha-Panaewa Community Ass'n v. Hawai`ian Homes 
Comm'n, 739 F2d 1467 (9th Cir. 1984) (Section 5(f) of the Hawai`i 
Admission Act, setting aside lands held in trust under the Hawai`ian 
Homes Commission Act, creates a Federal right in the Native Hawai`ian 
beneficiaries enforceable prospectively against the State of Hawai`i 
under 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983); Napeahi v, Paty, 921 F.2d 897 (9th Cir. 
1990), cert denied, 502 U.S. 901 (1991) (same, concerning lands which 
were assets of the land trust created under Section 5(f) of the Hawai`i 
Admission Act but which were not Hawai`ian Home Lands).
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    Over the last 30 years, Congress has included Native 
Hawaiians in numerous Federal statutes designed to address the 
conditions of Native Americans, including for example, the 
Native American Programs Act of 1974,\15\ the Native American 
Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act,\16\ the National 
Museum of the American Indian Act,\17\ the Native American 
Languages Act,\18\ the Native American Graves Protection and 
Repatriation Act,\19\ and the National Historic Preservation 
Act Amendments of 1992,\20\ and has enacted other statutes 
dealing with the specific circumstances of Native Hawaiians 
such as the Native Hawaiian Study Commission Act,\21\ the 
Native Hawaiian Health Care Improvement Act of 1988,\22\ and 
the Native Hawaiian Education Act.\23\
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    \15\ Pub. L. No. 93-644, Sec. 801, 88 Stat. 2291, 2324 (January 4, 
1975).
    \16\ Pub. L. No. 106-569, 114 Stat. 2944 (December 27, 2000).
    \17\ Pub. L. No. 101-185, 103 Stat. 1336 (November 28, 1989).
    \18\ Pub. L. No. 101-477, Sec. Sec. 101-104, 104 Stat. 1152, 1154 
(October 30, 1990).
    \19\ Pub. L. No. 101-601, 104 Stat. 3048 (November 16, 1990).
    \20\ Pub. L. No. 102-575, Sec. Sec. 4002, 4006, 106 Stat. 4600, 
4753 (October 30, 1992).
    \21\ Pub. L. No. 96-565, Sec. Sec. 301-307, 94 Stat. 3321, 3224-27 
(December 22, 1980).
    \22\ Pub. L. No. 100-579, 102 Stat. 2916 (October 31, 1988).
    \23\ Pub. L. 103-382, sec. 101, Sec. 9201-9212, 108 Stat. 3518, 
3794 (October 20, 1994).
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    Acting in furtherance of the Hawai`i Admission Act's 
partial delegation of Federal responsibility for Native 
Hawaiians, in 1978, the citizens of the State of Hawai`i 
recognized the long-standing efforts of the native people to 
give expression to their rights to self-determination and self-
governance by amending the State constitution to provide for 
the establishment of a quasi-independent State agency, the 
Office of Hawaiian Affairs. The Hawai`i Constitution provides 
that the Office is to be governed by nine trustees who are 
Native Hawaiian and who are to be elected by Native Hawaiians. 
The Office administers programs and services with revenues 
derives from lands ceded to the United States by the Republic 
of Hawai`i in 1898 and which were conveyed to the State of 
Hawai`i in trust upon its admission into the Union of States 
pursuant to section 5 of the Hawaii Admission Act. The 
dedication of these revenues reflects the provision of section 
5 of the Admission Act, which provides that the ceded lands and 
the revenues derived therefrom should be held by the State of 
Hawai`i as a public trust for five purposes--one of which is 
the betterment of the conditions of Native Hawaiians.
    On February 23, 2000, the United States Supreme Court 
issued a ruling in the case of Rice v. Cayetano, 528 U.S. 495 
(2000). The Supreme Court held that because the Office of 
Hawaiian Affairs is an agency of the State of Hawai`i, funded 
in part by appropriations made by the State legislature, the 
Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires 
that the election for the trustees of the Office of Hawaiian 
Affairs must be open to all citizens of the State of Hawai`i 
who are otherwise eligible to vote in statewide elections. 
Accordingly, all citizens of the State of Hawai`i may vote for 
the candidates for the nine trustee positions and, as decided 
in subsequent litigation, may themselves be candidates for 
these offices.
    The native people of Hawai`i have thus been divested of the 
mechanism that was established under theHawai`i State 
Constitution that, since 1978, has served as one means of 
giving expression to their rights as indigenous, native people 
of the United States to self-determination and self-governance. 
H.R. 4282 is designed to address these developments by 
providing a means under Federal law, consistent with the 
Federal policy of self-determination and self-governance for 
America's indigenous, native people, for Native Hawaiians to 
have a status similar to that of the other indigenous, native 
people of the United States.

The United States' special relationship with Native Americans

    For the past two hundred and ten years, the United States 
Congress, the Executive Branch, and the U.S. Supreme Court have 
recognized certain legal rights and protections for America's 
indigenous peoples. Since the founding of the United States, 
Congress has exercised a constitutional authority over 
indigenous affairs and has undertaken an enhanced duty of care 
for America's indigenous peoples. This has been done in 
recognition of the sovereignty possessed by the native people--
a sovereignty which pre-existed the formation of the United 
States. The Congress' exercise ofits constitutional authority 
is also premised upon the status of the indigenous people as the 
original inhabitants of this nation who occupied and exercised dominion 
and control over the lands over which the United States subsequently 
acquired jurisdiction.
    The United States has long recognized the existence of a 
special political relationship with the indigenous people of 
the United States. As Native Americans--American Indians, 
Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians--American Indians, Alaska 
Natives, and Native Hawaiians--the United States has recognized 
that they are entitled to special rights and considerations, 
and the Congress has enacted laws to give expression to the 
respective legal rights and responsibilities of the Federal 
government and the native people. As the United States Supreme 
Court recognized in Morton v. Mancari,\24\ recognition of a 
group of Native Americans as one with which the United States 
recognizes a special relationship is a distinction that is 
``political rather than racial in nature, \25\ and legislation 
providing a preference for members of such groups does not 
violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment 
to the United States Constitution where ``the special treatment 
can be tied rationally to the fulfillment of Congress' unique 
obligations toward the Indians[.] \26\
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    \24\ 427 U.S. 535 (1974).
    \25\ Id., 427 U.S. at 553 n.24.
    \26\ Id., at 554.
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    As the United States Supreme Court has recently noted, the 
power of Congress to address the conditions of the native 
people of the United States stems not only from the Indian 
Commerce Clause, U.S. Const., Art. I, Sec. 3, cl. 8, \27\ but 
rests also ``upon the Constitution's adoption of pre-
constitutional powers necessarily inherent in any Federal 
Government, namely powers that [the U.S. Supreme] Court has 
described as `necessary concomitants of nationality.' '' \28\
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    \27\ Although ``[t]he treaty power does not literally authorize 
Congress to act legislatively [with regard to Native Americans].'' 
United States. v. Lara, 124 S.Ct. 1628, 1633 (2004), the U.S. Supreme 
Court ``has explicitly stated that the statute [ending the practice of 
entering into treaties with the Indian tribes] `in no way affected 
Congress' plenary powers to legislate on problems of Indians:'' Id., 
124 S.Ct. At 1634 (quoting Antoine v. Washington, 420 U.S. 194, 203 
(1975)).
    \28\ Lara, 124 S.Ct. at 1634 (citing United States v. Curtiss-
Wright Export Corp., 299 U.S. 304, 315-22 (1936), and L. Henkin, 
Foreign Affairs and the U.S. Constitution 14-22, 63-72 (2d ed. 1996).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The United States Supreme Court has so often addressed the 
scope of Congress' constitutional authority to address the 
conditions of native people that it is now well-
established.\29\ The Court has characterized the authority of 
Congress as ``plenary'' \30\ or as ``plenary and exclusive,'' 
\31\ and has frequently stated its views regarding the broad 
scope of Congressional authority regard to native people \32\ 
and other ``dependent sovereign[s] that [are] not * * * 
state[s].'' \33\ Nor is this power limited to the native people 
living within the territory of the original thirteen states--it 
also extends to those living in lands that have been 
subsequently acquired.\34\ With regard to the power of Congress 
to make ``major changes in the metes and bounds of tribal 
sovereignty,'' \35\ the particular power Congress seeks to 
exercise here in the case of Native Hawaiians, the Court has 
stated:
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    \29\ ``The power of the general government over these remnants of a 
race once powerful, now weak and diminished in numbers, is necessary to 
their protection. As well as to the safety of those among whom they 
dwell. It must exist in that government, because it never has existed 
anywhere else, because the theater of its exercise is within the 
geographical limits of the United States * * * From their very weakness 
and helplessness, so largely due to the course of dealing of the 
Federal government with them, and the treaties in which it has been 
promised, there arises a duty of protection, and with it the power. 
This has always been recognized by the executive, and by congress, and 
by this court, whenever the question has arisen.'' United States v. 
Kagama, 118 U.S. 375 (1886).
    \30\ Morton v. Mancari, 427 U.S. 535 (1974).
    \31\ Lara, 124 S.Ct. at 1633 (citing, e.g., Washington v. 
Confederated Bands and Tribes of Yakima Nation, 439 U.S. 463, 470-71 
(1979), and Negonsett v. Samuels, 507 U.S. 99, 103 (1993)).
    \32\ Delaware Tribal Business Council v. Weeks, 430 U.S. 73 (1977); 
United States v. Sioux Nation, 448 U.S. 371 (1980). The rulings of the 
Supreme Court make clear that neither the conferring of citizenship 
upon the native people, the allotment of their lands, the lifting of 
restrictions on alienation of native land, the dissolution of a tribe, 
the emancipation of individual native people, the fact that a group of 
natives may be only a remnant of a tribe, the lack of continuous 
Federal supervision over the Indians, nor the separation of individual 
Indians from their tribes would divest the Congress of its 
constitutional authority to address the conditions of the native 
people. Cherokee Nation v. Hitchock, 187 U.S. 294 (1902); United States 
v. Celestine, 215 U.S. 278 (1909); Tiger v. Western Inv. Co., 221 U.S. 
286 (1911); United States v. Nice, 241 U.S. 591 (1916); Chippewa 
Indians v. United States, 307 U.S. 1 (1939); Delaware Tribal Business 
Council v. Weeks, 430 U.S. 73 (1977); United States v. John, 437 U.S. 
634 (1979).
    \33\ Lara, 124 S.Ct. at 1635 (noting the ``annexation of Hawaii by 
joint resolution of Congress and the maintenance of a ``Republic of 
Hawaii'' until formal incorporation by Congress, as described in Hawaii 
v. Mankichi, 190 U.S. 197, 209-210 (1903), the establishment of the 
Northern Mariana Islands as ``a self-governing commonwealth * * * in 
political union with and under the sovereignty of the United States'' 
pursuant to note following 48 U.S.C. Sec. 1801 [see also Pub. L. 94-
241, 90 Stat. 263 (Mar. 24, 1976)], the recognition of the Philippine 
Islands as an independent nation pursuant to 22 U.S.C. Sec. 1394, and 
the authorization granted the people of Puerto Rico to ``organize a 
government pursuant to a constitution of their own adoption'' pursuant 
to the Act of July 3, 1950, 64 Stat. 319).
    \34\ United States v. Sandoval, 231 U.S. 28 (1913).
    \35\ Lara, 124 S.Ct. at 1635.

          One can readily find examples in congressional 
        decisions to recognize, or to terminate, the existence 
        of individual tribes. See United States v. Holliday, 3 
        Wall. 407, 419 (1866) (``If by [the political branches] 
        those Indians are recognized as a tribe, this court 
        must do the same''); Menominee Tribe v. United States, 
        391 U.S. 404 (1968) (examining the rights of Menominee 
        Indians following the termination of their Tribe). 
        Indeed, Congress has restored previously extinguished 
        tribal status--by a re-recognizing a Tribe whose tribal 
        existence it previously had terminated. 25 U.S.C. 
        Sec. Sec. 903-903f (restoring the Menominee Tribe); cf. 
        United States v. Long, 324 F.3d 475 (CA7) (upholding 
        against double jeopardy challenge successive 
        prosecutions by the restored Menominee Tribe and the 
        Federal Government), cert. denied, 540 U.S. __, 124 
        S.Ct. 151 (2003).\36\
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    \36\ Id.

    While the Indian Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution 
provides authority for the Congress to conduct relations with 
the Indian tribes, over time the exercise of that authority has 
evolved to include the enactment of laws which address the 
conditions of individual Indians, individual indigenous native 
people, and groups of native people who are not organized as 
tribes. For instance, the federal policy of forced removal of 
Indians from their ancestral lands to areas west of the 
Mississippi was carried out without regard to tribal 
organization, and later, the General Allotment Act \37\ and 
other laws were enacted to provide for the termination of 
Indian reservation status and the allotment of lands to 
individual Indians.
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    \37\ 24 Stat. 388 (February 8, 1887).
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    The Alaska Native Allotment Act of 1906 \38\ provided for 
similar allotment of native lands to individual Alaska Natives, 
without regard to tribal organization.
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    \38\ 34 Stat. 197 (May 17, 1906).
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    In the states of California, Montana, and Washington, to 
name but a few, individual Indians were removed to designed 
reservations and were forced to live with other Indians who 
were not members of the same tribe. In the 1960s, the Federal 
policy of relocating Indians to urban areas was also carried 
out without regard to tribal organization. The Alaska National 
Interest Lands Conservation Act \39\ authorized a preference 
for subsistence hunting and fishing by Alaska Natives, 
notwithstanding the fact that not all Alaska Natives were 
organized as tribes, and the Alaska Native Claims Settlement 
Act \40\ (ANCSA) authorized the establishment of native 
regional and village corporations in which Alaska Natives would 
be the principal shareholders and the corporations would hold 
title to the surface and subsurface estates of lands selected 
by Alaska Native corporations under that Act, without regard to 
whether the native shareholders were members of an Indian 
tribe. ANCSA singled out the indigenous, native people for a 
unique status and the rights and privileges which flowed from 
that status, as distinct from other citizens of Alaska.
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    \39\ Pub. L. 96-487, 94 Stat. 2371 (Dec. 2, 1980).
    \40\ Pub. L. 92-203, 85 Stat. 688 (December 18, 1971).
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    A more recent manifestation of Congress' broad 
constitutional authority to address the conditions of the 
indigenous, native people of the United States is the Federally 
Recognized Indian Tribes List Act of 1994 \41\--which 
designated as ``tribes'' for purposes of carrying on relations 
with the United States a number of groups of native people who 
were not previously organized as tribes, and in some cases who 
are still not organized as tribes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \41\ Pub. L. 103-454, 108 Stat. 4791 (November 2, 1994).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Furthermore, it is clear that the Congress has exercised 
its constitutional authority to terminate the federal 
government's recognition of tribal status, to restore federal 
recognition of tribal status, and indeed to authorize the 
indigenous, native people to come together to reorganize their 
governments. The Indian Reorganization Act of 1934 \42\ was one 
of the federal statutes that provided this native governmental 
reorganization authority, and that Act did not impose any time-
related conditions requiring, for instance, that a native 
government could only reorganize if its Federally recognized 
status had been terminated within a certain number of years, 
nor did that Act require that the indigenous, native people 
seeking to reorganize a native government had to have been 
formerly recognized by the Federal government as an Indian 
tribe.
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    \42\ 48 Stat. 984 (June 18, 1934).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    With regard to the period of time between termination and 
restoration of the Federally recognized status of tribal 
groups, while the average amount of time between termination 
and restoration ranges from 19 to 36 years,\43\ the efforts to 
secure restoration of Federally recognized status took much 
longer in other instances--such as the 55 years between 
termination and restoration experienced by the Pokagon Band of 
Potawatomi Indians of Michigan.\44\ Federal law has never 
provided that upon the passage of a designated period of time, 
a native government is precluded from reorganizing. Thus the 
indigenous, native people of Hawai'i are not precluded from 
reorganizing a government based on the passage of time.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \43\ Menominee, Restoration Act, Pub. L. 93-197; Auburn Indian 
Restoration, Pub. L. 104-109; Siletz Indian Tribe Restoration Act, Pub. 
L. 96-340; Yslete del Sur Pueblo and Alabama and Coushatta Indian 
Tribes of Texas Restoration Act, Pub. L. 103-437; Paskenta Band 
Restoration Act, Pub. L. 103-454; Catawba Indian Tribe of South 
Carolina Land Claims Settlement Act of 1993, Pub. L. 103-116; Ponca 
Restoration Act, Pub. L. 101-484; Coquille Restoration Act, Pub. L. 
101-42; Klamath Indian Tribe Restoration Act, Pub. L. 99-398; 
Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon Restoration 
Act, Pub. L. 98-165; Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah Restoration Act, Pub. 
L. No. 96-227.
    \44\ Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians Restoration Act, Pub. L. 
103-323.
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H.R. 4282 and the federal recognition of Native Hawaiians

    With the enactment of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act in 
1921and subsequent legislation, Congress has exercised its 
broad powers under the Indian Commerce Clause to recognize Native 
Hawaiians as among the indigenous people of the United States with whom 
it maintains a special legal and political relationship. It is 
significant that the United States recognized this relationship within 
less than 25 years of the annexation of Hawai`i to the United States, a 
period much shorter than, for example, the 55-year break in Federally-
recognized status experienced by the Pokagon Band. The restoration of 
the United States' recognition of a Native Hawaiian governing entity 
contemplated in this Act is well within the constitutional powers of 
the Congress, just as is the restoration of Federal recognition of the 
Menominee Tribe, and the fact that recognition of Native Hawaiians has 
taken a form different from that bywhich Indian tribes within the 48 
contiguous states have been recognized is without constitutional 
significance.
    H.R. 4282 provides a process of negotiations in which the 
Native Hawaiian governing entity, the State of Hawai`i, and the 
United States can reach consensus on matters of civil and 
criminal jurisdiction, land use regulatory authority, the 
transfer or exchange of lands and natural resources, and the 
full range of issues that each of these governments may wish to 
consider in shaping their future relationships as governments, 
including any outstanding land claims. The bill provides that 
once consensus is reached, the three governments will bring 
their agreements to the Congress and to the Legislature of the 
State of Hawai`i so that implementing legislation can be 
enacted, and existing laws can be appropriately amended.
    In a manner analogous to the Alaska Native Claims 
Settlement Act, H.R. 4282 establishes a new and different 
paradigm which, like other Native settlements acts, authorizes 
the three governments to have implementing legislation enacted 
and thereby to add to the body of Federal laws that are 
designed to address the conditions of America's indigenous, 
native people rather than importing into their relationships--
without adaptation to address the unique circumstances of 
Hawai`i--the body of existing Federal Indian laws.

Conclusion

    The primary injury that H.R. 4282 is intended to address is 
the loss of a sovereign governing entity resulting from the 
1893 overthrow of the government of the Kingdom of Hawai`i, an 
event made possible by the actions of officials and citizens fo 
the United States. Although Congress has consistently 
recognized Native Hawaiians as among the native people of the 
United States on whose behalf it may exercise its powers under 
the Indian Commerce Clause, it has not as yet acted to provide 
a process for the reorganization of a Native Hawaiian sovereign 
governing entity. H.R. 4282 provides authority for that 
process.

                                                  Neil Abercrombie.