KWSO News for Fri., Aug. 7, 2020

There were no new cases of COVID-19 in Warm Springs in Thursday’s (8/6/20) COVID-19 update for the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, however there was another death, bringing the total deaths from coronavirus to 4. There remain 203 total positive cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began. 150 individuals have recovered. 2145 tests have been done at the Health & Wellness Center with 37 test results pending as of Thursday.

A new area is set up outside the Warm Springs Health & Wellness Center to do education with patients about why and how anyone exposed to or diagnosed with Covid-19 should isolate and Quarantine to prevent the spread of illness. There is a lot of concern about unknowing behaviors causing the spread of coronavirus.   Please get educated about this important action that can keep others safe and healthy.

In a letter to families, students and staff on Thursday, 509-J School Superintendent Ken Parshall provided an update on the district’s plans to reopen schools on Tuesday, September  8th within the Comprehensive Distance Learning guidelines provided by the state. 509-J schools will be starting the first six weeks of school in a Distance Learning Model. This option, Parshall states, is likely the best choice for families who plan to have their students return to in-person learning once metrics allows a reopening of schools. The district has also expanded the Online Learning program to accommodate families who choose to opt in to that model for full-time online learning. Students are expected to engage and log in on a daily basis for attendance and to make weekly progress based upon pacing guides for completion of courses. Chromebooks will be available for student checkout, as well as portable hotspots for those without access to a home internet connection. Resources, an orientation schedule and technical assistance are being developed to provide help to students and families. Parents will be asked to decide on a model and technical needs. Weekly updates will be forthcoming.

Today is the deadline for Warm Springs Tribal Members to submit applications for the July CARES Assistance. As of Thursday, August 6, 2020, the Tribe had processed 3,260 emergency assistance applications and issued payments in the amount of $4,812,750 to eligible tribal members and on behalf of eligible tribal member dependents. Some checks have been returned due to incomplete or incorrect addresses, and they are reaching out to those individuals to get corrected mailing addresses. For any eligible individual that has not applied that wishes to apply, you can email your completed applications to, fax your application to 541-553-2236, or drop your application off in person at the Warm Springs Tribal Administration building. Any questions can be emailed to or asked by calling 541-553-3476.

As the Public Utilities Division begins work to make repairs to the Shitike Creek Crossing, they are asking that all residents of the Agency area conserve as much water as possible through the weekend to facilitate a system shutdown that will occur on Saturday.  Branch of Public Utilities General Manager Travis Wells says they intend to conserve enough water within reservoirs to maintain pressures and flow for more critical demands like fire suppression through the scheduled shut down.  It is anticipated that the water system will be back up and running by the end of the day on Saturday barring any significant unforeseen events. Affected residents should also take measures to protect their hot water tanks by shutting off the power to the tank until the water system is back up and running.

The Dakota Access Pipeline can keep transporting oil for now, but the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will need to decide whether it can continue operating without a key permit, following a federal appeals court ruling this week. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit threw out the shutdown order issued last month by U.S. District Judge James Boasberg, saying that he “did not make the findings necessary” to justify his ruling. Boasberg on July 6 ordered that the pipeline be emptied of oil within 30 days, prompting a swift appeal by pipeline developer Energy Transfer and the Corps, which permitted the line. The higher court, however, kept in place Boasberg’s March decision revoking the Corps permit for the pipeline’s Missouri River crossing in North Dakota just upstream from the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.