Minerals and Mining on Indian Lands

The objectives of the Energy and Mineral Development Program are to: (1) provide funds to Tribes to perform technical evaluations of the energy (both renewable and conventional) and mineral resource potential of Indian reservations; (2) provide Tribes with geological, geophysical and engineering reports,
maps, and other data concerning their energy and mineral resources; (3) provide Tribes technical assistance on using and interpreting assessment information so that Tribes can understand and plan for the potential development of these resources; and (4) provide Tribes with an outreach vehicle to promote their lands and resources to potential partners if they so desire.

Those projects that fell into economic development categories will be considered for funding through the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development.
Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

Projects support the development of energy (both renewable and conventional) and mineral resources on Indian lands through assessment studies, economic analysis and market studies, developing strategies for leasing feasibility studies and mining plans, establishing terms for exploration agreements, environmental reviews, and training.

Mineral Assessments include seismic exploration, inventories of existing geophysical and geological data, development of an oil and gas resource database and mapping system, and evaluation and assessment of mineral resources.

Agency - Department of the Interior

The Department of the Interior protects and provides access to the Nation's natural and cultural heritage, including responsibilities to Indian tribes and island communities. Departmental goals include resource protection and usage, overseeing recreational opportunities, serving communities and excellence in management.

Office - Applications may be filed with the local Bureau of Indian Affairs' agency office as listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Program Accomplishments

Minerals and Mining facilitates over $400 million in annual minerals income to tribes and allottees. Between 25 and 50 Tribes request Energy and Mineral Development projects annually; generally 10 to 20 projects are funded.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Minerals and Mining: Funding may be used to facilitate the inventory, assessment, promotion and marketing of both renewable and nonrenewable energy and mineral resources on Indian lands.

Energy and Mineral Assessments: Funds are awarded competitively to support assessment and inventory programs and/or develop baseline data, but cannot be used for development purposes.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Federally Recognized Indian Tribes and Individual American Indian mineral owners.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Federally Recognized Indian Tribal Governments and their members, Native American Organizations, and/or individual American Indian mineral property owners.


Minerals and Mining: Initial application for assistance must be accompanied by a resolution of the governing body of the Indian tribe. Mineral Assessments Proposals must include: (1) a current tribal resolution authorizing the proposed project; (2) a proposal describing the proposed activities and the planned deliverable products; (3) a detailed budget estimate; and 4) a review by the BIA Agency Superintendent verifying that the work to be performed occurs on trust or restricted fee lands (the Superintendent will notify DEMD in writing if that is not case).

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Informal preapplication conference is recommended.

Technical assistance in preparing the application is available upon request.

This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.


Application Procedures

Initial applications for financial assistance must contain the information specified in 25 CFR, Part 900, Subpart C, "Contract Proposal Contents." Completed applications for Minerals and Mining should be submitted to the Division of Energy and Mineral Development office in Lakewood, Colorado and to the local BIA agency office listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Award Procedures

Mineral and Mining/Mineral Assessments. Proposals are paneled by the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development. Funds are awarded according to the order of ranking of the proposals, although some elements of the budget may not be fully funded due to the Division's own ability to perform some tasks at lower costs.


Energy and Mineral Assessments: Proposals are usually submitted within 90 days of the original solicitation, usually occurring in December, although this may vary due to the appropriations process.


Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act, Public Law 93-638, as amended, 25 U.S.C. 450; Snyder Act of 1921, Public Law 67-85, 42 Stat. 208, 25 U.S.C. 13; Indian Minerals Development Act, Public Law 97-382, 98 Stat. 1938, 25 U.S.C. 2101 et seq.; Umatilla Basin Project Act, Public Law 101-557, 16 U.S.C. 1271 et seq.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Mineral Assessments: Within 120 days after the solicitation period.


An unsuccessful applicant may request an informal conference with the deciding official, or may appeal the denial of the application to the Interior Board of Indian Appeals, or may bring suit in U.S. District Court. Full appeal procedures are found in 25 CFR, Part 900.


Minerals and Mining/Mining Assessment: A notice of intent to renew should be submitted at least 90 days prior to the expiration of the current award.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Consideration in the final ranking score is given to proposal's that include contribution by the Tribe. The contribution can be either monetary or staff time of Tribal employees devoted to the project.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Awards are made on an annual basis and the funds remain available until expended by the contractor/grantee. Payments may be made in advance or by way of reimbursement. The timing of payments is negotiated with the grantee.

Post Assistance Requirements


Financial status reports, SF 269A, are required.

The timing and nature of program accomplishment data will be negotiated with the contractor/grantee.

Technical reports describing project outcomes are defined as deliverables in an Energy and Mineral Development award and the data generated must be presented in a compatible computer format as specified by the Division of Energy and Mineral Development.


For awards made under this program, grantees and subgrantees are responsible for obtaining audits. All non-Federal entities that expend $500,000 or more of Federal awards in a year ($300,000 for fiscal year ending on or before December 30, 2003) are required to obtain an annual audit in accordance with the Single Audit Act Amendments of 1996 (31 U.S.C. 7501 et seq.), OMB Circular A-133, the OMB Circular Compliance Supplement and Government Auditing Standards. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $500,000 (for fiscal years ending after December 1, 2003) a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in OMB Circular A-133.


Financial records must be retained for 3 years from the date of submission of the single audit report. Procurement records must be retained for 3 years from the date of final payment. Property records must be retained for 3 years from the date of disposition, replacement, or transfer. Records pertaining to any litigation, audit exceptions, or claims must be retained until the dispute has been resolved. For Mineral Assessment awards, one paper copy of all data (field data, processed data, analyses, assays, etc.) must be submitted at completion of contract.

Financial Information

Account Identification



(Grants) FY 07 $1,224,840; FY 08 est $1,000,000; and FY 09 est $1,000,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Minerals and Mining: Currently not contracted by any of the tribal governments. Mineral Assessments: $25,000 to $150,000; $75,000.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

25 CFR, Part 900 and Subchapter I - Energy and Minerals.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

Applications may be filed with the local Bureau of Indian Affairs' agency office as listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Headquarters Office

Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs, Division of Energy and Mineral Development, 12136 W. Bayaud Ave., Suite 300, Lakewood, CO 80228. Contact: Steve Manydeeds. Telephone: (303) 969-5270, Ext. 225.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Energy and Mineral Assessments: Proposals are evaluated according to technical merits of the mandatory elements of the proposal. Additionally, selection criteria for ranking contain six criteria: (1) Resource Potential; (2) Commodity Marketability; (3) Economic Benefit, (4) Willingness to Develop; (5) Tribal Commitment; and (6) Additional funding or participation from other entities.

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