AP NEWS

Montana extends deadline for missing persons database

December 23, 2019 GMT

GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — Montana’s Missing Indigenous Persons Task Force has extended the deadline for tribal colleges to apply for a grant to start and administer a database of missing American Indians.

Officials say none of the state’s seven tribal colleges applied for the $25,000 grant by the Dec. 13 deadline. The task force voted last Thursday to extend the deadline to Jan. 25 with the goal of awarding the grant by mid-February.

Tina Chamberlain, the Looping in Native Communities (LINC) coordinator with the Department of Justice, told the Great Falls Tribune that one of the tribal colleges was interested, but needed more time.

The grant requires the database be administered by a data specialist who meets certain qualifications. Applicants must also include a plan for meeting data verification and security standards.

The money to create the database was appropriated by the legislature as part of an effort to get state, local, federal and tribal agencies to work better together in reporting and searching for missing American Indians.