FILE - In this Friday, June 14, 2019, file photo, Carmen Thompson, of El Reno, Okla., looks over a poster of her niece Emily Morgan who was murdered in 2016, before the start of a march to call for justice for missing and murdered indigenous women at the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma in Concho, Okla. U.S. Senate staffers say officials missed a second deadline on July 8 to offer input on bills on Native American safety, and only one department has since provided “partial comment.” (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

Federal agencies missed 2nd deadline for tribal safety bills

July 16, 2019 - 12:40 am

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. Senate staffers say officials missed a second deadline last week to offer input on bills on Native American safety, and only one department has since provided "partial comment."

U.S. Sen. John Hoeven set a "hard deadline" of July 8 for Interior and Justice Department officials to offer "definitive conclusions" on legislation after he criticized them for filing late testimony ahead of a key committee hearing last month. Hoeven, a North Dakota Republican, chairs the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.

A Senate committee spokeswoman says Interior officials ultimately submitted updated documents to senators after the July 8 deadline, while the Justice Department hadn't yet. A Justice Department spokesman says officials are working to do so.

A spokesman for Sen. Tom Udall, a New Mexico Democrat, says the Interior only provided "partial comment."

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