STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Gov. Doug Ducey recently signed a bill, HB 2312, sponsored by Rep. Albert Hale, D-St. Michaels (District 7), that will increase Native American representation on the Arizona Advisory Council on Indian Health Care. The bill requires the governor to appoint a member from each of Arizona’s 22 Indian Nations to the council.
Sen. Carlyle Begay, R-Ganado (District 7), also worked on this legislation in the Arizona Senate. Hale expressed his gratitude to Begay and others who contributed to improving the Arizona Advisory Council on Indian Health Care’s representation of Native American communities.
“I want to thank Sen. Begay, the Advisory Council, and the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona for their hard work on this essential expansion of Native American representation on this advisory council,” Hale said. “I also appreciate all the support my colleagues have shown for this issue.”
The bill also clarifies the Council’s purpose, which is to provide Native American governments and health care organizations a role in shaping the health care laws and policies that affect the communities they serve. The council’s website, with information about upcoming meetings, can be found here.
Gov. Ducey signed the bill days after it won final passage in the legislature.
“I thank the governor for signing this legislation,” Hale said. “The Arizona Advisory Council on Indian Health Care can now be better connected to the communities it serves.”
Hale will retire from the Legislature this year, and during the final vote on this measure, he told his colleagues that he has enjoyed the time he has spent serving in both the House and the Senate.
“I’ve been able to serve at the Legislature for 16 years, and I am grateful for that time,” Hale said. “I am also happy to return to my community and looking forward to the next chapter of my life.”