By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
The EBCI Tribal Operations (TOP) office is going green. They are now offering the monthly Tribal Council packets (agendas) for Budget Council and the regular Tribal Council meeting in electronic format that can be downloaded to a computer. In the past, it has not been uncommon for these packets to number several hundred pieces of paper each.
“In the past, we’ve gone through enormous amounts of paper for Council packets,” said Rosie McCoy, TOP manager. “At TOP, we shred and recycle. Our office staff tries to be ‘green’ conscious. This was the next logical step in waste reduction.”
She related that all Tribal Council representatives have access to laptop computers that they can use to download their Council packets.
“It may take a few tries, but I am confident that we will soon be paperless regarding Council packet distribution. Chairman Jim Owle has encouraged this initiative and fully supports this endeavor. Not only will this assist with budget cost containment, but it will be beneficial to our environment – even if it’s on a small level.”
Principal Chief Michell Hicks issued an Environmental Proclamation on Earth Day (April 24) in 2006 stating in part that the EBCI “shall be devoted to promoting a healthy, sustainable natural environment within the Qualla Boundary and throughout the region.”
On TOP’s endeavor, he related, “Many of our tribal programs have taken steps to implement aspects identified in the Environmental Proclamation, and now the Tribal Operations Program has joined the effort by offering access to electronic Tribal Council packets. Having the Council packets emailed to Tribal Council members will significantly reduce paper waste, saving monetary resources and most importantly our valuable natural resources. I would like to thank the TOP staff and Tribal Council for their commitment to being a role model for all tribal programs.”
Painttown Rep. Terri Henry is pleased with the move. “I think it’s fantastic that the Tribe is looking at digital alternatives for documents. What we have to do, as Council, is find ways to be able to interface with the technology so that we can be green and more efficient.”
Following are some paper recycling facts from recycling-revolution.com:
- Recycling a single run of the Sunday New York Times would save 75,000 trees.
- Americans use 85,000,000 tons of paper a year; about 680 pounds per person.
- If every American recycled just one-tenth of their newspapers, we would save about 25,000,000 trees a year.
Principial Chief Michell Hicks’ Environmental Proclamation: