President Barack Obama on Monday signed an act that will provide native communities, including Native Hawaiians, with more resources to cultivate cultural tourism programs.
Introduced by U.S. Sens. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, and John Thune, R-S.D., the Native American Tourism and Improvising Visitor Experience – NATIVE – act -- will require federal agencies with tourism assets to include Native Hawaiian, Alaska Native and American Indian communities in their strategic planning. It will also provide those native communities with the proper resources and technical help to develop cultural tourism programs.
“I’m incredibly proud to have worked with our native communities on this legislation, and I’m pleased the president has signed it into law,” Sen. Schatz said in a statement. “This new law gives our native communities a real opportunity to grow their local economy and share their history and culture with the rest of the world.”
The act will also spur job creation and economic development, he said.