Hoeven: Senate Confirms Katharine MacGregor as Interior Deputy Secretary

Senator Invited MacGregor to Visit North Dakota, Urged Her to Advance Energy Development, Tribal Law Enforcement Needs & National Park Maintenance

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources (ENR) Committee, today joined the Senate in confirming Katharine MacGregor as the Deputy Secretary of the Interior. The senator helped advance MacGregor’s nomination through the ENR Committee and, during her confirmation process, urged her to support a variety of priorities for North Dakota and tribes in the state, including energy development, tribal law enforcement and national park maintenance. Hoeven also invited MacGregor to visit the state to meet with local leaders and learn more about these issues firsthand.

“Considering the vast amount of federal and tribal land in North Dakota, having the right people in place at the Interior Department, like Deputy Secretary MacGregor, is key for advancing our state’s priorities,” said Hoeven. “I appreciate her commitment to visit the state and work with us on these matters, including tribal law enforcement, energy permitting on federal lands and addressing national park maintenance, like the scenic loop at Theodore Roosevelt National Park.”

Specifically, Hoeven worked to secure MacGregor’s support for the following priorities:

Filling Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) law enforcement vacancies.

  • As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Hoeven secured $2.5 million in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 funding legislation to address tribal law enforcement needs in the Great Plains region.

Expediting the federal permitting process for energy development.

  • Hoeven secured report language in FY2020 directing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to work with the Fort Berthold reservation on streamlining oil and gas permitting for the tribe.
  • The senator, who serves as the chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, previously sponsored and passed into law a bill to give tribes greater autonomy over energy development.
  • Hoeven is also advancing his BLM Mineral Spacing Act, which would waive the permit requirement when the federal government controls less than 50 percent of subsurface minerals and there is no federal surface land. 

Addressing the National Park Service (NPS) deferred maintenance backlog.

  • Hoeven secured funding to advance the reconstruction of the scenic loop at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park and recently announced that geotechnical work would begin on the project this month.
  • The senator helped introduce and secure committee approval of the Restore Our Parks Act. The bill would use 50 percent of the excess revenues from energy development on federal lands to resolve the NPS maintenance backlog, which includes more than $50 million of maintenance in North Dakota.