Pechanga TANF Program
Mark Macarro serves as tribal chairman for the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians in Temecula, California. Currently in his 14th year as chairman, Mark Macarro is a respected leader in the local community.
The Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians can trace its roots in California’s Temecula Valley back more than 10,000 years, and the band is one of seven that calls the area home. They have persisted through considerable adversity, from massacres to evictions to discriminatory legislation. Today, the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians provides a wealth of valuable cultural and community services in the greater Temecula area.
These valuable services include the Pechanga TANF Program, a service that supports families from low-income backgrounds. This program is dedicated to promoting traditional two-parent families and helping those families become self-sufficient. To this end, it offers assistance with childcare and employment as well as providing some cash aid.
Qualifying families must live within the Pechanga Indian Reservation, have children, and meet financial guidelines. To learn more about these and other services available, visit: www.pechanga-nsn.gov.
Native American Rights Fund
Since 2002, Mark Macarro has guided the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians as its tribal chairman. Mark Macarro is currently involved with several human rights and tribal advocacy groups, and is a board member of the Native American Rights Fund.
The Native American Rights Fund (NARF) provides financial backing and legal assistance to individuals, organizations, and tribes within the Native American community. Since 1971, the fund has successfully defended tribal and individual rights in hundreds of critical cases.
The leaders behind NARF maintain a strong focus on the human rights issues specific to their people. The organization has a vested interest in protecting the cultural and religious traditions that are important to members of the Native American community, such as eagle feathers, peyote, and access to sacred places. NARF utilizes legal avenues to protect these cultural traditions as much as possible, while concurrently working toward repatriation and restoration of cultural items and lands.
Mark Macarro, Tribal Chairman of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians, lauded the passing of bill AB 52, which was signed into California legislation on September 25, 2014, after nearly two years of discussion and negotiation. Mark Macarro, featured on Capitol Weekly’s Top 100 list at No. 39, is known for his commitment and determination toward improving the well-being of the Indian people in California.
Bill AB 52 aims to do just that, by giving tribes the authority to protest against development projects that negatively impact sacred tribal areas of cultural and historical importance. AB 52 achieves this through improvement of consultative ties with tribes under the California Environmental Quality Act. The legislature was supported by Assembly member Mike Gatto, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the California State Assembly.
Mr. Macarro thanked Assembly member Gatto for his support and leadership. He went on to point out the importance of aligning California’s environmental laws with the conservation and preservation of tribal heritage and sites of historical significance, not only for Indians, but also for future generations of all Californians.