About the Office

The FCC's Office of Native Affairs and Policy (ONAP) serves as Commission's catalyst to help improve the level of broadband, telecommunications, and broadcast deployment throughout Indian country. 

Established by FCC Order in 2010 as a recommendation of the National Broadband Plan, ONAP's mission is to "bring the benefits of a modern communications infrastructure to all Native communities by, among other things, ensuring robust government-to-government Consultation with Federally-recognized Tribal governments and other native organizations; working with Commissioners, Bureaus, and Offices, as well as with other government agencies and private organizations, to develop and implement policies for assisting native communities; and ensuring that Native concerns and voices are considered in all relevant Commission proceedings and initiatives."

The ONAP team accomplishes its mission through these primary work streams:

  • Represent the FCC in government-to-government consultation with sovereign Tribal nations.
  • Leverage our understanding of Indian Country to work with other Bureaus and Offices around the FCC to craft policies that improve deployment and bring investment to Tribal lands.
  • Conduct regional and national Tribal consultation and training workshops to help build understanding and knowledge of FCC policies which can help spur deployment on Tribal lands, partner with other Federal agencies to bring resources to support deployment, and enhance technical knowledge and skills in Indian Country.

About Telecommunications Deployment on Tribal Lands

Approximately 63 percent of Tribal land residents lack access to fixed broadband speeds of 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload, as compared to only 17 percent of the U.S. population as a whole. The disparity is even higher for residents of Tribal lands in rural areas, with approximately 85 percent lacking access according to the 2015 Broadband Progress Report


Upcoming Event
June 8, 2017

Tribal Consultation with Chairman Pai on Wireless Infrastructure
Sinte Gleska University - Rosebud Sioux Reservation 

See "Spotlight" on this page for more information. E-mail questions to Tribalinfrastructure@fcc.gov

Recent Events
May 25, 2017

Tribal Conference Call on the Wireless Infrastructure NPRM and NOI
The Office of Native Affairs and Policy and the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau held a conference call for elected and appointed Tribal leaders and their duly appointed representatives. Speakers used the following slide decks during their presentations:


Tribal Consultation

The Office of Native Affairs and Policy and the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau will host its first in-person Tribal consultation focusing on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) and Notice of Inquiry (NOI) entitled Accelerating Wireless Broadband Deployment by Removing Barriers to Infrastructure Investment, WT Docket No. 17-79.  The NPRM/NOI seeks comment on, among other issues, the historic preservation and Tribal review processes currently required to deploy wireless facilities. The session will be held on June 8, 2017 at the Sinte Gleska University's Multi Purpose Building, on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation. The Multi Purpose Building is located on the University's Antelope Lake Campus, just south of Route 18, east of downtown Mission.  A map of the region is available at https://goo.gl/maps/LADbgX7LvVE2. The consultation will feature FCC Chairman Pai along with senior Commission staff from the Chairman's office, ONAP, and WTB.  On-site registration will begin at 12:00 PM and the consultation will go from 12:30-4:00 PM. A copy of the NPRM/NOI can be found at: https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-takes-steps-to-promote-wireless-broadband-deployment.

We invite your participation in these meetings, and look forward to engaging in a meaningful dialogue on these important topics.  Please direct any immediate questions to tribalinfrastructure@fcc.gov.


Contact Us

Non-Tribal entities should use this link to contact the ONAP team on any matter pertaining to the FCC's work with Native nations.

Send an email

Request Tribal Consultation

The ONAP team welcomes opportunities to engage in Consultation with Federally recognized Tribes, intertribal organizations and other Tribally owned and/or operated entities.  We invite opportunities to be forwarded at the link, below.

Request Tribal Consultation


Proceedings of Tribal Interest


Thursday, June 1, 2017