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Tribal Chair Ken Kahn and former congressmember Lois Capps

Paul Wellman

Tribal Chair Ken Kahn and former congressmember Lois Capps


Chumash Bill Passes House, Moves to Senate


The federal legislation, House Bill 1491, that would allow the Chumash to immediately annex the 1,400-acre property known as Camp 4 unanimously passed the U.S. House on Tuesday. The bill was amended to include the agreement reached last month between the Board of Supervisors and Chumash officials. The deal enacts building restrictions, prohibits gaming, and stipulates that the Chumash pay $178,000 annually to county coffers. The bill now heads to the Senate.

Chumash Chair Ken Kahn expressed appreciation the bill continues to move forward. “Camp 4 is about tribal housing on tribal land, it’s about preserving our Chumash Culture, and it’s about bringing tribal members home,” Kahn said. Santa Barbara Congressmember Salud Carbajal, who was known to be supportive of the tribe while he was a Santa Barbara County supervisor, praised the “locally negotiated agreement” as “an important step toward establishing a long-term collaborative relationship between all parties involved.”

County Supervisor Joan Hartmann, who represents the Santa Ynez Valley, said in a statement she anticipated the House vote would be unopposed. “A key assumption guiding the county’s negotiations was that this bill would inevitably pass the House of Representatives with ease, much in the fashion that it did this week,” she wrote. She added that she is pleased the county and the tribe achieved an agreement, which restricts the tribe to building 143 homes and a tribal center. In addition, she said, the Chumash would pay the county more than $3 million through the terms of the deal.

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