Community Planning and Natural Resources

The Department of Community Planning and Natural Resources provides coordinated assessment and servicing of the Narragansett Indian Tribal Reservation and Tribal Community. The mission of the department is to promote sustainable community development and ecological functions, and to expand the Tribe’s capacity to exercise its sovereign rights, through planning, analysis, education, and implementation. The goals of the department are to develop a sound economic base that will lead the Tribe to a future of self-sufficiency and enable the Tribe to continue providing services if funding from the federal government should decline or cease. The Planning Department develops ways to facilitate economic development and helps to envision future development of the Reservation lands, while being mindful of the need to protect natural resources and traditional Native American values. The Department also works with all other tribal departments to assist in departmental planning and works with Tribal members to assist them in developing the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the creation of businesses.

Economic and Community Development
Economic and Community Development’s aim is to enhance the Tribal Community’s quality of life by creating a positive business climate that leads to job creation and the creation, retention and enhancement of existing businesses.

Environmental Protection and Natural Resources Management
Environmental Protection and Natural Resources Management is committed to protecting the health and welfare of the Tribal culture, Community, and the natural environment by preserving, conserving, restoring, and enhancing the Reservation environment through the collection and analysis of high quality natural resource data and facilitating environmentally sound resource management, planning, policy development, and community outreach. The program is also committed to the protection of the environment and human health on the Narragansett Indian Reservation through management and regulation of use activities. Programs include: indoor and outdoor air quality, non-point source pollution, management and clean-up of solid and hazardous waste, planning for hazardous incident response, emergency response, Hazard Mitigation and Planning, control of invasive species, Safe Drinking Water, wetland protection and regulation, habitat restoration, habitat management, shoreline study, sensitive areas and other natural resources, environmental ordinance and policy development and environmental review. The programs identified are funded through the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Geographic Information Services (GIS)
Geographic Information Services (GIS) is responsible for providing accurate information and assistance to support all Tribal Departments. GIS maintains and creates information to aid in the development of maps and data analysis to support Tribal activities and issues. The program maintains a large database of layers including:

• Zoning

• Parcels

• Buildings

• Roads

• Realty information

• Wells

• Vegetation

• Natural and cultural resources

• These layers cover the Tribe’s Reservation and Fee areas as well as surrounding areas and are continually expanded and updated.

Permitting is responsible for the review and inspection of activities occurring on the Reservation to assure that the activities are being carried out in accordance with the Tribe’s Ordinances and Regulations. The Department of Community Planning and Natural Resources oversees the Permitting activities along with the Land &Water Resources Commission and Building Officials. Permits include:

• Land-use activities

• Building &mechanical/plumbing

• Demolition

• Environmental protection

• Hunting

• Zoning

• Planned developments