KWSO News for Fri., Jul. 10, 2020

Yesterday afternoon’s Community Covid-19 update from the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs reported 9 additional positive cases of Covid-19.  There have been a total of 103 cases of coronavirus since testing began.  76 people have recovered.  1290 tests have been done with 44 tests pending.  7 people have been hospitalized with 4 individuals discharged.

The Warm Springs Health and Wellness Center has 271 State test kits in their inventory and 267 ABBOTT (Rapid) test kits.  In addition to those with symptoms or direct close contact with individuals who have tested positive, surveillance testing continues for high risk community members and broader surveillance of Tribal employees.

COVID-19 has claimed six more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 230.  The Oregon Health Authority reported early yesterday morning that there were 389 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 11,188.

Warm Springs Fire Management said a wildfire was reported Thursday afternoon (7/9/20) on the east side of Sidwalter Flats along Highway 26.  All available local fire crews were dispatched along with a helicopter.  Strong winds were reported to drive the fire eastward and presented a challenge for the air attack.  The fire closed Highway 26 for a time. Crews monitored the fire overnight and will continue work today.

The Tribal Finance Department offered an update on the CARES Act Relief program for Warm Springs Tribal Members.  Applications will be processed in the order that they receive them.  The first group of payments will go out today (Friday 7/10/20).  All checks will be mailed so it’s important to make sure you have your correct, current mailing address on the application.  There is limited staff working on the application and payment process so please do not call or email about your application status for a couple weeks after turning it in.

Warm Springs Tribal Courthouse is closed today. There will be no staff working as a deep cleaning is done in the building. All cases that were scheduled for yesterday and today will be rescheduled.           Tribal Court will reopen on Monday, July 13, 2020.

The Warm Springs Student Summer Work Program has been cancelled until further notice. The decision was made due to the coronavirus pandemic and out of concern for youth safety and health. Students can contact the WEDD/WIOA office with any questions – 541-553-3324 or email

The Oregon Employment Department launched a new informational website today aimed at improving customer service for the record number of Oregonians applying for and receiving unemployment benefits. The new site,, is designed to help Oregonians more easily find information on: the new programs created by the CARES Act, whether they might qualify for unemployment benefits, how to apply, and what’s different during the pandemic.

The Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council (COIC) and regional partners have created an emergency grant fund for small businesses and non-profits impacted by the economic downturn caused by the spread of the coronavirus. COIC combined contributions from Deschutes County ($100,000), Crook County ($10,000), the City of Madras ($25,000), Jefferson County ($18,250) and the Warm Springs Community Action Team ($15,000) to leverage additional money from the State of Oregon. There is now over $680,000 available to sole proprietors, small businesses, and non-profits across the Central Oregon region that includes Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson counties and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. Eligible businesses and non-profits can receive from $2,500-$25,000 in grant funds, depending on number of employees and other factors. A complete list of program guidelines and a link to the grant application can be found at The grant program opens today and will close July 20.

The modified Jefferson County Fair will begin accepting virtual open class exhibits and talent show entries today through July 17 at 5pm. Open Class entries will be accepted in the following categories: Art, Baked or Canned Goods, Canned and Dried Fruits, Vegetables, Pickles and Wine, Folk arts and Crafts, Fruits and Vegetables, Flowers and Plants, Kids Corner, Land Products, Latino Arts and Crafts, Native American arts and crafts, Photography, Prepared foods, Textiles and Clothing. There will not be cash awards and participants will need to send a photograph of their work. All entries will be displayed the week of July 22. The fair is also accepting talent show entries virtually. There will be three categories: Child (age 1 to 10), Youth (age 11 to 17) and Adult (18+).  Check the Jefferson County Fairgrounds website for details.