Congressman's Plan Could Help Chumash Housing Project

Federal legislation may move Santa Ynez Valley property into reservation

POSTED: 10:10 AM PST Dec 24, 2013    UPDATED: 07:18 PM PDT Oct 25, 2013 
SANTA YNEZ, Calif. -

The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians could get a large parcel of land moved into their reservation under a bill proposed by a northern California Congressman.

The tribe owns 1400 acres of property off Highway 154 not far from current reservation.

If the legislation is passed by congress, the property will be in the reservation and future developments will no longer have to go through normal county review boards. Santa Barbara County will also no longer receive property taxes from the site.

The issue has been the focus of two public meetings in the last month.  Both had standing room only crowds.  It's also stirred up a very strong battle of the words between supporters and opponents.

Rep. Doug LaMalfa, a fourth generation farmer, proposed the bill, HR 3313 on Wednesday.

It is now undergoing a review in the House Committee on Natural Resources.