[NA-Discuss] Indigenous Peoples Fellowship Program

Eric Brunner-Williams ebw at abenaki.wabanaki.net
Sat May 25 17:09:37 UTC 2013


Ever since John Afele and I undertook outreach to Indigenous
Populations -- and my focus was the Americas and Oceania -- during the
June 2000 Membership Implementation Task Force -- the progenitor of an
"At Large", it has been wicked difficult to offer utility in
participating in ICANN sufficient to motivate FN/NA/Metis/Indios to
engage, and amongst those who do, to remain engaged.

A long-winded way of saying that if you know of any FN, Metis, or
Allied individuals considering engaging in any part of ICANN, please
do pass along my contact information to him/her/them.

The criteria used by ICANN for its Fellowship Program is:

"Applicants must be citizens of economically eligible countries. We
use a combination of the World Bank classification of low,
lower-middle, and upper-middle economies, along with two (2) UN
groupings of developing and least developed nations:
http://www.unohrlls.org/en/ldc/25/ which are based on distinctly
different criteria which stretch beyond the World Bank's economically
deterministic view. "

Here is a brief outline of how I currently view how ICANN can, should
it decide to, approach the question of extending its existing
Fellowship Program to distinct, under-served populations lacking the
objective third-party generated identifiers used, e.g., to provide a
delegation from the IANA root zome to an applicant for a Memorandum,
rather than a Contract, form of operational agreement (the UN
Statistical Agency's designation of Palestine as a distinct
identifier, leading to the allocation of "PS" in ISO 3166-1), or the
criteria published by the UN-OHRLLS*.

The current interpretation of the tax authority of the United States
is that bonding authority of Federally Recognized Indian Tribes is not
capable of issuing tax exempt bonds except for "Government Purposes",
unlike the bonding authority of States and their subordinate political
jurisdictions -- cities and so forth, which may issue tax exempt bonds
for arbitrary purposes, e.g., construction of sports arenas, etc.

This IRS enforced relative deficiency (originating from a lone member
of the Republican House Caucus elected from a district in Florida and
highly critical of Indian Gaming), and the Volume Cap for Tribal
Economic Development Bonds**, are object, third-party determinations
that "significantly less access to finance capital" exists in "Indian
Country" within the country with the highest ranking GDP.

I developed all this (a bunch of supporting data and papers on Tribes
and their bonding authority and experience) when I thought that the
JAS effort might benefit a new gTLD applicant organic to, or at least
committed to serving, some Indigenous Peoples, which of course did not
occur. I briefly considered the equivalent issue of tax exempt bonds
as a means of access to finance capital and the bonding authority of
Treaty Bands in Canada. I don't consider my knowledge in this area
equivalent to my knowledge of the situation for Federally Recognized
Indian Tribes in the United States.

What was intended for the new gTLD program can be repurposed to
address a long-standing deficiency in the Fellowship Program.

If you'd like we can work on this off the na-discuss list. There are
Indian Telecoms and Datacoms lists, and some of the content relates to
ICANN and network access policy.

Again, please pass along my contact info, should you think it useful.


* UN Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed
Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing
States, at http://www.unohrlls.org

LDC defined at: http://www.unohrlls.org/en/ldc/164/
LLDC defined at: http://www.unohrlls.org/en/lldc/31/
SDC defined at: http://www.unohrlls.org/en/sids/43/


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