Last week, with many in the Santa Ynez Valley worried about their properties being included in the Chumash tribe’s federally approved “Tribal Consolidation Area,” or TCA, U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Rep. Lois Capps sent a letter to the Bureau of Indian Affairs to see what the designation on the 11,500 acres of land actually means. In the letter, the legislators assert that they have not taken a position on the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians’ attempt to annex into their reservation the 1,400-acre Camp 4 property — which is what prompted the TCA in the first place, presumably as a way for the tribe to show that Camp 4 is in their historic region — but request clarification on more than 10 distinct issues, from understanding how it was granted and what other tribes have applied, to inquiring whether it will affect water rights, property values, and existing regulations.


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