Warm Springs Tribal Council met on Monday October 4th. There was a request that was approved by the Branch of Public Public Utilies for $133,868 in additional funding from the CARES fund to go toward needs at Fire & Safety, for the Community Center HVAC system and for Tribal Freezers at the Simnasho and Agency Longhouses. Updates were given by Brenda Bremner for Warm Springs BIA. Kevin Moore gave an update on the Bureau of Trust Funds Administraion. There was an Indian Health Service Update and a report from the local COVID-19 response team. Federal and State Legislative updates were given by Matthew Hill and Michael Mason. A motion passed for the S-503 Salvage Sale – authorizing the BIA, Forestry, Branch of Natural Resources and Warm Springs Timber Company to proceed with an expedited salvage for the S-503 wildfire. Tribal Council authorized a reforestation deduction of $10.55 per thousand board feet be deducted from log value in order to do tree replanting on the reservation in the fire area.
Last Friday – Warm Springs Tribal Council passed a motion to approve a draft of the 2022 Tribal Budget. The budget will be posted in public locations as is required by the Tribal Budget Ordinance. More information about public notification and Tribal Member input is forthcoming. Due to COVID-19 there will be no in-person budget meetings. The draft budget shows a loss of revenue including Timber Revenue down about 1.5 Million dollars and Enterprises down 1.2 Million. American Rescue Plan Act funds will fill that gap to the tune of 4 million 7 hundred thousand dollars. And Tribal Programs ,overall, will operate with similar budgets to what they have this year. You can find information about the an article about the 2022 Tribal Budget in this week’s Spilyay Tymoo: WS SPILYAY_Draft 2022 CTWS Tribal Budget
Every October, open enrollment begins for Medicare Advantage and Part D prescription drug plans. Medicare plans and coverage for prescription drugs change each year, so it is important for Oregonians who are enrolled in Medicare to evaluate their plan options and make changes during open enrollment. Open enrollment for the 2022 Medicare plan year is from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7, 2021. The Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA) program with the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS) is available to help Oregonians understand their Medicare options and benefits, provide enrollment guidance, and answer any questions related to Medicare benefits. Counselors are available to help and can be found by visiting SHIBA.Oregon.gov or calling (800) 722-4134 (toll-free).
More than 120,000 people who identify as Native American live in Maryland, but without public-facing numbers of COVID-19 cases and deaths, it is a mystery how many the disease has affected — and how many resources should be allocated to help them. In an article posted by Indian Country Today – it appears that Natives are again lumped into the “Other” racial and ethnic category making American Indians and Alaska Natives effectively invisible on Maryland’s state website for COVID-19. Not all Maryland jurisdictions follow the state’s example. Baltimore City, for instance, includes “American Indian or Alaska Native” and “Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander” as options in its COVID-19 dashboard, though the Maryland Department of Health does not. You can read the University of Maryland’s Capital News Service article online at https://indiancountrytoday.com/news/another-other-category-for-native-covid-19-data