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How Indian Country Is Preparing To Disburse $20B In Federal Funding

Outbreak One Good Thing Native Youth.
Tommy Martino/AP
In this photo taken June 16, 2020, Michelle Mitchell, head of the tribes' education department on the Flathead Indian Reservation, stands for a portrait in Pablo, Montana. Native American tribes in Montana are trying to shield their vulnerable elders from the coronavirus pandemic with a public-awareness campaign that enlists musicians to tell tribal youth to wash their hands and wear masks."Our guiding work is for the youth here on the reservation, but that doesn't mean our kids over here can't challenge the kids from Blackfeet," Mitchell said. "They could launch these challenges themselves and take it in to other Indian communities. That would be pretty cool." (AP Photo/Tommy Martino)

The latest coronavirus relief package includes $20 billion for tribal governments, a potentially transformative infusion of cash. But last year’s aid roll-out to Indian Country was badly mismanaged and tribal leaders hope the Biden Administration has learned from those mistakes.

Idaho Matters talks with Mountain West News Bureau reporter Savannah Maher about this issue.

Frankie Barnhill is the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast. She's always interested in hearing surprising and enlightening stories about life in the West. Have an idea for Idaho Matters? Drop her a line!