Tribal Government & News

Tribal Government Day set for Feb. 9 in Salem

01.31.2017 Dean Rhodes Tribal Council, State Government

SALEM -- The nine federally recognized Tribes in Oregon will have a chance to explain to state legislators and their staff members, state employees and the general public who they are when Tribal Government Day returns to the State Capitol in Salem from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 9.

Karen Quigley, executive director of the Legislative Commission on Indian Services, said the theme of this year’s Tribal Government Day echoes the Capitol Gateways exhibit “We Are Oregonians” that recently opened in an adjoining hallway.

“Each Tribal government is invited at their table to describe how and why they are Grand Ronde, Umatilla, Burns Paiute, etc.,” Quigley said.

The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde will supply bottled water and snacks for the event and the Portland-based Native American Rehabilitation Association will serve fry bread. The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians also has donated funds for the reception.

The Grand Ronde Tribe will be represented by Public Affairs Administrative Assistant Chelsea Clark at the informational table and Tribal Council members and Tribal lobbyist Justin Martin usually attend to meet with veteran and newly elected legislators.

“Tribal Government Day offers a unique opportunity for Tribal leaders, Tribal staff and Tribal citizens to meet with legislators, public agency officials and staff in an environment to communicate directly about their respective governments,” said Martin, who is based in Salem.

“This reciprocal education event provides a glimpse into how similar their respective roles can be, while also highlighting the uniqueness of the state-Tribal process that makes Oregon so effective at positive government-to-government relationships. These positive relationships lead to an enhanced awareness and work ethic that guides a better policy framework that ultimately benefits everyone inside Indian Country and throughout Oregon.”

Although Oregon’s Legislature now meets annually, the 2017 session will be the larger of the two and the event gives Oregon Tribes a chance to educate new legislators who were elected during the November 2016 general election about their sovereign status and issues of importance to Oregon’s Tribal Nations.