Heather Sibbison serves as chair of the firm's Native American Law and Policy practice, which serves clients on matters related to American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian issues. Her practice is primarily focused on all matters related to Indian lands, including trust acquisitions, Indian lands opinions, Carcieri v. Salazar issues, land claim settlement issues, and related compliance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) and the Natural Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
Heather's long experience with the Indian Reorganization Act, IGRA, NEPA, various land and water rights settlements, and the legal issues that have been spawned by the Supreme Court's decision in Carcieri, enable her to assist clients in developing and implementing workable fee-to-trust and reservation proclamation strategies for tribes needing additional land for gaming, non-gaming economic development, housing or any other use.
Her practice also encompasses extensive representation of tribes in the tribal-state compacting process, the development of inter-governmental services agreements and most matters for which federal administrative approval is required from either the Department of the Interior (Interior) or the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC). Heather also has been actively engaged in federal recognition issues, representing clients before the DOI. In all of these matters, Heather has assisted clients navigate their issues both with the federal agencies and with the United States Congress.