2 North Dakota reservations given Promise Zone status
BELCOURT, N.D. (AP) — An area of North Dakota that encompasses the Turtle Mountain and Spirit Lake Indian reservations has been designated one of the nation's nine newest Promise Zones, easing access to federal aid and cut red tape for areas beset by joblessness, hunger, crime and poor housing.
The effort led by the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians also designates tribal-trust and tribal-owned land and North Dakota's Rolette County.
South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation received the designation last year.
The determination is made by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It comes with no guaranteed new federal money but gives communities an advantage in applying for grants, as well as special access to federal employees who act as liaisons through federal bureaucracy.