Senate Votes to Extend State Commission on Indian Affairs


NASHVILLE (AP) - The state Senate has voted to extend the state's commission on Indian affairs by another year.

Senators voted 20-10 to overturn a committee's recommendation to repeal the commission at the end of June.

Opponents call the commission dysfunctional, and point out that the federal government has sole jurisdiction over Indian affairs. Some Senators also voiced concern that the commission's goal is to seek federal recognition for tribes to allow casino gaming in Tennessee.

Sen. Thelma Harper, a Nashville Democrat, argued that internal disagreements on the commission should not disqualify it. She says the same reasoning would cause the Senate to be disbanded.

The companion bill has yet to be scheduled for a hearing in a House committee.

Read the full text of SB2477 on the General Assembly's Web site at:

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.