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ASU partners with Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community on environmental workshop

June 18, 2009

The application of federal environmental law in Indian Country was the focus of a recent workshop presented by the ASU American Indian Policy Institute and the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law. The workshop was held May 27 for the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community's Environmental Protection and Natural Resources Department in the state-of-art training room at the new Salt River government complex.

Ann Marie Downes, an attorney and director of the Indian Legal Program Graduate Programs in the College of Law, and Patricia Mariella, the institute's director, conducted the workshop.

Among discussion topics were well-known cases in Indian law, including Dura v. Reina, which originated on the Salt River-Maricopa Indian Community. Other discussion centered on the development of federal Indian policy, civil and regulatory jurisdictional issues.

The workshop is the first of several on environmental compliance and enforcement that the Institute will be conducting with the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, according to Mariella.

"The community is a national leader in tribal environmental management, having been the first to develop a pesticide regulatory program in the late 1970s," she said.

ASU's American Indian Policy Institute provides technical assistance for tribal governments in the development of policies, law and structure. It also provides information to state, local and federal policymakers concerning Indian law and policy. More information at