High court seems ready to send virus funds to Alaska Natives

    Washington (AP) - The Supreme Court seems inclined to say that hundreds of millions of dollars in coronavirus relief money should benefit Alaska Natives, rather than be spread more broadly among Native American tribes around the U.S.

    The justices were hearing arguments Monday in a case involving the massive pandemic relief package passed last year and signed into law by then-President Donald Trump.

    The $2.2 trillion legislation earmarked $8 billion for “Tribal governments” to use to cover expenses related to the pandemic.

    The question for the court is whether Alaska Native corporations, which are for-profit corporations that provide benefits and social services to more than 100,000 Alaska Natives, count as “Indian tribes.”

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