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American Indian and Alaska Native Programs

The U.S. Census Bureau has two main programs designed to collect and maintain geographic information on tribal areas:  the Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) and the Tribal Statistical Areas Program (TSAP).  Please see the links below for more information on these programs and American Indian and Alaska Native geography:

Tribal Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS)

The Census Bureau conducts the Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS) yearly to update and maintain information about legal boundaries, names and official status of federally recognized American Indian reservations and/or off-reservation trust lands, as well as counties, incorporated places and minor civil divisions.  The information collected is used to tabulate and report statistical data from various Census Bureau surveys, such as the American Community Survey and 2010 Census.

In February 2014, the Census Bureau and National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) signed a Memorandum of Agreement [PDF] in support of the Tribal BAS.

In support of the government-to-government relationship with federally recognized American Indian tribes, the Census Bureau works directly with tribal officials to maintain a current and comprehensive inventory of legally defined tribal lands.  Detailed information about current Tribal BAS participation, materials and workshops can be accessed at the BAS website.

Tribal Statistical Areas Program (TSAP) and State Reservation Program

In preparation for Census 2010, the Census Bureau offered officials from federally and state recognized tribes, Alaska Native Villages and Alaska Native Regional Corporations the opportunity to review and update the following geographic areas:

  • Alaska Native Village Statistical Areas (ANVSAs)
  • Alaska Native Regional Corporations (ANRCs)
  • Oklahoma Tribal Statistical Areas (OTSAs)
  • OTSA Tribal Subdivisions
  • Tribal Designated Statistical Areas (TDSAs)
  • Tribal Census Tracts and Tribal Block Groups (on federally recognized reservations only)
  • Census Designated Places (CDPs)
  • State American Indian Reservations (SAIRs)
  • State Designated Tribal Statistical Areas (SDTSAs)

Definitions of the American Indian and Alaska Native Geographic Areas

Federal Register Notices for American Indian and Alaska Native Areas

Other Useful American Indian and Alaska Native Area Links

Contact Information

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Geography | (301) 763-1128 |  Last Revised: January 15, 2015