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Chapter 1 - Internal Agency Procedures

Part 6 - Services To Tribal Governments And Organizations

Title Section
  PURPOSE 6-1.1A
  POLICY 6-1.1C

  1. Purpose.  This chapter incorporates, by reference, the Internal Agency Procedures Handbook for Non Construction Contracting under Title 1 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act, into the Indian Health Manual (IHM) System.  The Handbook sets out the procedures to guide the Indian Health Service (IHS) in facilitating and enhancing contracting with tribes and tribal organizations.
  2. Background.  The final joint Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Department of the Interior (DOI) rule implementing section 107 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDA), Public Law (P.L.) 93-638, as amended, was published in the Federal Register on June 24, 1996, and became effective August 23, 1996.  The regulations were developed through negotiations between tribal and agency representatives pursuant to the Negotiated Rulemaking Act.  The Departments declined to develop internal agency procedures through the negotiated rulemaking process, but in the preamble to the final regulations, the Secretaries agreed to an enhanced consultation process to develop procedures related to the implementation of the ISDA that do not involve resource allocation issues.  The process would generate a procedural manual (Handbook) that would promote the purposes underlying the ISDA and facilitate contracting by Indian tribes and tribal organizations (T/TO) through the establishment of uniform Federal procedures.  The Handbook is intended to be fully consistent with but not reinterpret policies contained in the ISDA and regulations.

    On February 4, 1997, the Departments established an Internal Agency Procedures Workgroup (IAPWG) to create the proposed Handbook for use by the DOI and the IHS to implement the ISDA and Federal regulations.  The establishment of the IAPWG provided a non-exclusive means of tribal participation in the Handbook development.

    The IAPWG included 11 tribal members (one representative for Phoenix and Tucson), one from each of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and the Indian Health Service's (IHS) 12 regional areas, eight Federal members from the DOI and HHS, and other participants.  The IAPWG meetings were facilitated by facilitators from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.  The IAPWG and its Drafting Sub-Workgroup met a total of 10 times between December 1996 and July 1998.

    The Federal and tribal IAPWG members collaboratively developed this procedures Handbook to eliminate internal Federal obstacles that could affect uniform and efficient administration of Title I of the ISDA.  The Handbook sets out uniform Federal procedures to be used by, and guide the actions of, all agencies of the DOI and the HHS to facilitate and enhance contracting with T/TOs under Title I of the ISDA.

    The procedures in the Handbook are not regulations but are intended to provide administrative guidance to Federal personnel in carrying out their responsibilities under Title I of the ISDA.  (The Handbook became effective July 28, 1999.)

  3. Policy.  All IHS employees administering contracts under Title I of the ISDA, the Federal regulations, and the procedures in the Handbook will act in accordance with the letter, spirit, and intent of the ISDA, the Federal regulations, and the policy statements contained therein, as well as in accordance with their responsibilities as Federal officials.  Employees will be held accountable for their actions.
  4. Supersedure.  The Handbook supersedes provisions of previous procedural instructions or manuals regarding ISDA contracting under Title I of the ISDA issued by the IHS, unless those provisions can be demonstrated to be consistent with this Handbook, the ISDA, or the Federal regulations.  The status of previous procedural instructions or manuals (issued prior to July 28, 1999) is provided in Appendix E of the Handbook.

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