Published On: Mon, Jan 8th, 2018

News from the Nations (Jan. 1-8, 2018)

 

Marijuana sales could start in February for S’Klallum Tribe

The Port Gamble S’Klallum Tribe of Washington, headquartered in Kitsap County, Washington, is in the final stages of approvals to be able to open a marijuana store on their lands reports K5News.  The tribe’s compact with the State of Washington has been approved by the Liquor and Cannabis Board and just needs the signature of Gov. Jay Inslee.

The Port Gamble S’Klallum becomes the fifth tribe in the state to enter into a marijuana compact.  K5News reports that their marijuana business will be called High Point LLC and will be overseen by their Noo-Kayet Development Corporation.  Chris Palentia, Noo-Kayet chief executive officer, told K5News that construction on the business could start by the end of the year and noted, “It’s definitely on the horizon.  Our ultimate goal is to be involved in every aspect of the industry.”

 

Pokagon Band of Potawatomi to open casino in Indiana

The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi, based in Dowagiac, Mich., has reported that their new Four Winds South Bend casino will open in Indiana on Tuesday, Jan. 16.  The tribe states in a press release that the casino is located on 166 acres of tribal trust land in northern Indian and is the first casino in the state to be owned by a federally-recognized tribe.

The 175,000 square foot facility will include 1,800 games, a players lounge, a coffee shop, three bars, a retail outlet, and four restaurants.

“Once operating, it will generate revenue to fund services and programs that will create additional economic opportunities for Pokagon citizens, the city of South Bend, and also fund community projects, local organizations and schools,” John P. Warren, Pokagon chairman, said in a statement.  “Our commitment to our tribal citizens, children, and families of this region is our greatest priority.”

The Associated Press reported, “A study for the Casino Association of Indiana estimates the tribal casino will cut Indiana’s tax revenue by more than $350 million in its first five years because it will reduce business at the state’s other casinos and won’t pay state gambling taxes.”

 

Osage Nation planning new health center for 2019

The Osage News reported that the Osage Nation of Oklahoma is in the planning stages for a new health center that could be built in 2019.  Osage Nation Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear was quoted by the Osage News as saying, “It’s going to take a lot of money…it’s going to take a lot of planning, it’s going to take a lot of work with (Osage) Congress, banks, my office, and this board.  But, to move from a 12,500 square-foot facility to a 30,000 to 40,000 square-foot facility will be significant.”

Referencing a 2010 study conducted by Dr. Joe Conner, Osage tribal member, and his wife Dr. Carol Conner, entitled “Health of a Nation: Reservation at Risk”, Chief Standing Bear told the Osage News, “If you live off reservation and you’re Osage, your life expectancy is 10-15 years longer than an Osage that lives here, and it’s backed by hard evidence.”

 

Tri-lingual children’s book includes Ho-Chunk language

Two thousand copies of “The Ho-Chunk Courting Flute” will be printed, per a tribal grant, which is the first tri-lingual children’s book about the tribe reports the Wisconsin State Journal.  The books, translated into Ho-Chunk, English, and Spanish will be donated to all public schools and libraries in Madison, Wisc. and throughout the tribe itself.

“This whole project has been all about how we, as public school teachers, can incorporate First Nation history as more than just a social studies topic,” Emily Schroeder, a teacher at Lincoln Elementary School in Madison, told the State Journal.

The story was told to the students by Bill Quackenbush, Ho-Chunk tribal historic preservation officer.  The students at Lincoln translated the story in Spanish and Ho-Chunk students at Niikuusra Community School translated it into their language.