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To provide a unified effort to promote change in Indian Agriculture for the benefit of Indian People.

The Intertribal Agriculture Council conducts a wide range of programs designed to further the goal of improving Indian Agriculture. The IAC promotes the Indian use of Indian resources and contracts with federal agencies to maximize resources for tribal members.

USDA, APHIS- Biotechnology Regulatory Services will be hosting a Tribal Call on Nov. 19, 2018 @ 2:00 EDT

November 13, 2018

Invitation to a conference call to discuss APHIS’ intention to update it’s biotechnology regulations. Dear Tribal Leader: APHIS values our relationships with our tribal partners and strives to keep them informed of APHIS actions that could have tribal implications. I am writing to you today to invite you to participate in a conference call the afternoon of Monday November 19, 2018, to discuss APHIS’ intention to update its biotechnology regulations. Earlier this year, we invited comments on a Notice oflntent (NOI) that was published in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018 for a 30-day comment period. The NOI announced USDA’s intention to conduct a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) on potential revisions to regulation of the importation, interstate movement, and environmental release of certain genetically engineered (GE) organisms. As required under the National Environmental Policy Act, APHIS must evaluate the potential impacts to the environment that may result from an _agency’s action. More information is available at:

https :/ /www. aphis. usda. gov/ a phis/ ourfocus/biotechno logy/biotech-rul e­revision/2017 perdue proposed rule/340 2017 perdue biotechreg.

APHIS is considering amending its biotechnology regulations as pertaining to the importation, interstate movement, and environmental release of certain GE organisms to address advances in biotechnology and various issues previously raised by stakeholders. These proposed revisions would allow APHIS to more effectively protect plant health under the Plant Protection Act by focusing APHIS’ regulations in 7 CFR part 340 on risks that may be posed by certain GE organisms rather than the method used to produce the product. It would also make the regulatory processes more transparent while removing unnecessary regulatory burdens. APHIS has been thoroughly reviewing and considering all public input, including input received from Tribal nations, submitted during the 30 day comment period on the NOI as we work to complete, and then publish, the draft PEIS and the proposed rule. Tribes, the public, and stakeholders will also have ample opportunity to review and comment on each of these proposed regulatory documents as USDA determines how it will proceed. We have scheduled a Tribal Nations conference call for the afternoon of Monday November 19, 2018 at 2:00 pm Eastern Time to provide additional information on APHIS’ intentions to update our biotechnology regulations. To participate in the call please use the following conference line information:

Conference Line: 888-844-9904
Access Code: 7733507

USDA is committed to the development of strong cooperative relationships. Please consider participating in this conference call in order to gain a better understanding of these proposed regulations. For additional information, please contact Bill Doley at 301-851-3937, by e-mail at william.p.doley@aphis.usda.gov, or by mail at USDA APHIS, 4700 River Road, Unit 98, Riverdale, MD 20737. APHIS welcomes tribal input and is prepared to consider your input and enter into government-to-government consultations. We look forward to discussing these matters further. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Michael J. Firko, PhD
APHIS Deputy Administrator
Biotechnology Regulatory Services
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
U.S. Department of Agriculture

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