Pamunkey Indian Tribe is the first federally recognized tribe in the Commonwealth of Virginia
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will be providing $110,000 in environmental program funding to the Pamunkey Indian Tribe, according to a EPA news release. The tribe is the first federally recognized tribe in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
According to the news release, the tribe have a list of objectives they will work toward. Those objectives include: organizing and carrying out environmental outreach and education with the tribal community through community meetings and events, developing and adopting an EPA/Tribal Environmental Plan to ensure the health and safety of people who live, work and visit the reservation, enacting an Integrated Waste Management Plan to provide regularity within the Tribal Government and membership regarding correct waste disposal and removal and establishing an Office of Environmental Protection which will serve as a resource and provide information pertaining to environmental media including fish and wildlife, air, water, soil quality, flora and fauna.
The tribe consists of more than 350 enrolled members that reside on and off the reservation. The reservation is located in the rural Tidewater region of King William County. The Pamunkey Tribe was one of the first indigenous communities in North America to encounter English colonists and one of first to engage in treaty negotiations with European monarchies, according to the EPA news release. The U.S. government recognized the tribe as the first federally recognized Indian Tribe in the Commonwealth of Virginia, in Jan. 2016.
The funding will help the tribe’s environmental services, according to the news release. The tribe will use the funds to help develop their programs for establishing an Office of Environmental Protection and sponsoring community events and developing environmental plans. They will also use the funds to raise tribal awareness about environmental concerns.
“This funding will assist the Pamunkey in laying down the foundation of an environmental program and facilitating important community outreach and education,” said Cosmo Servidio, EPA Regional Administrator. “With this funding, the tribe is demonstrating strong stewardship for its lands and resources while ensuring protection of the public health of their community.”