There are several things that tribal leaders can do to prepare for the Buy-Back Program. One important activity is to become familiar with the four land consolidation phases. Additional steps that your reservation might pursue are included below:
Establish a tribal task force or team to plan for land consolidation. Designate an authorized tribal point of contact.
Provide information to the Buy-Back Program about the tribe’s land consolidation programs and current capacities, including any plans the tribe might have to utilize Program tools – such as appraisals and mapping – to direct its own resources to reduce fractionation and manage tribal land. (DOI recognizes that some tribes have pursued land consolidation activities for many years).
Educate landowners about the Buy-Back Program and other options for dealing with fractionated land beyond the Buy-Back Program (e.g., estate planning). General Buy-Back Program outreach materials are available to facilitate this effort.
Identify questions and issues that are frequently raised by owners and share them with the Buy-Back Program.
Encourage landowners to update their address, date of birth, and contact information by contacting the Trust Beneficiary Call Center at (888) 678-6836.
Attend general outreach meetings, webinars, or regional events (list of upcoming events is available for reference).
Work with the Buy-Back Program to exchange GIS data to ensure current mapping of reservation lands, which can facilitate identification of priorities and valuation efforts.
Determine tribal acquisition priorities (specific tracts of land that are of particular interest for acquisition.