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SWONAP - Administrator's Message

A Message from the Administrator of the Southwest Office of Native American Programs

Greetings to all our partners throughout the Southwest Region. My name is Carolyn J. O'Neil. I am the Administrator of the Southwest Office of Native American Programs (SWONAP). The SWONAP's main office is located in Phoenix, Arizona and we have a satellite office located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I invite you to browse the SWONAP Web pages and take time to peruse the abundance of helpful information located here.

I'd like to share a few facts about our Southwest region. There are 179 federally recognized tribes located within SWONAP's jurisdiction; scattered throughout west Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California. The sizes of the tribes range from the very small, consisting of only a few enrolled tribal members, to the largest tribe in the United States, the Navajo Nation.

SWONAP administers several programs for the tribes in this region. The Indian Housing Block Grant Program (IHBG) Formula allocation is based on the current HUD-assisted housing units owned or maintained by a tribe or Tribally Designated Housing Entity (TDHE), coupled with the overall need of the tribe. Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG) funds may be used for a wide range of affordable housing and related activities. The Indian home loan guarantee program, Section 184 Loan Guarantee Program, is also available to Native American families that meet qualification requirements enabling eligible borrowers to construct, purchase, rehabilitate and refinance single-family dwellings on and off reservation. In addition, our office administers other HUD programs such as the Indian Community Development Block Grant Program (ICDBG), Rural Innovation Fund Program - HUD, and Resident Opportunities and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS) - Public ... programs that are available throughout Indian Country. It is estimated the annual federal funding from HUD in the Southwest region is approximately $225 million.

Since the passage of NAHASDA, the "Native American Housing and Self Determination Act of 1996" and with its implementation in October, 1997, we have made every effort to interface with the Tribes and TDHEs in a manner that respects and honors the true meaning of a Government-to-Government relationship. Further, through your support and partnerships, together we have made great strides to help create opportunities for a better future for Tribes and Native American communities.

I have had the honor and pleasure of being the Administrator at SWONAP for nearly three years. During this time, I have come to know and respect our regional staff, who are knowledgeable, committed professionals with many years of experience and each of us are here to serve you (Contact SWONAP Staff). We will continually strive to provide the very best service to our Tribes, and other stakeholders who work with the tribes, to help them become as successful as possible with their housing, community development, economic development, and other related activities. We ultimately measure our success by the people and communities we serve and how we assist all of you in achieving your goals.

I trust you will find the information on the SWONAP web pages helpful and interesting. If you have comments or suggestions please let me know.

Invitations and Meeting Requests for the Administrator

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