LAND BUY-BACK PROGRAM ON THE SWINOMISH INDIAN RESERVATION
Through the Department of Interior's Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations (LBBP), the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community was able to purchase fractionated interests from willing sellers of individual trust lands on the Swinomish Reservation.
The LBBP was a result of the class action lawsuit, Cobell v. Salazar against the federal government for mismanagement of individual trust accounts. One part of the Settlement Agreement that resulted from this lawsuit was a $1.9 billion Trust Land Consolidation Fund. The LBBP was created to implement this portion of the Settlement Agreement, and provides funding for the buy-back and consolidation of fractionated individually-owned trust land. The program intends to help consolidate fractional interests by paying for the purchase of individual trust interests in tracts with multiple landowners on behalf of Tribes.
The Land Buy-Back Program at Swinomish is now complete. The Swinomish Indian Tribal Community participated in the Land Buy-Back Program in 2015 and the early part of 2016. Through this program, the Tribe was able to purchase multiple undivided interests in ten priority tracts on the Swinomish Reservation. Thank you to everyone who participated. If you are a landowner and have questions about your land, please contact the Swinomish Realty Program. For more information on the results of the Land Buy-Back Program for Tribal Nations, go to doi.gov/buybackprogram.