Tribal Government & News

Tribal Council amends out-of-date ordinances

04.04.2018 Dean Rhodes Tribal Council

Tribal Council adopted amendments to two more than 25-year-old ordinances that were originally created in the early 1990s and have not been changed since during its Wednesday, April 4, meeting.

During the Tuesday, April 3, Legislative Action Committee meeting, Tribal Council Vice Chair Chris Mercier said the reassessment of the two ordinances is part of a Tribal Council effort to examine and update old Tribal ordinances.

The Name Change and Birth Certification Ordinance was adopted in 1992 and has not been amended. No comments from the membership were received regarding the new amendments, which renamed it the Name Change Ordinance because all provisions related to birth certification have been removed and name change provisions have been updated and clarified.

The Small Claims Ordinance, which was adopted in 1993 and also has not been amended, also received no comments from the membership when the amendments were sent out for a first reading. The new amendments update and clarify provisions to the Small Claims process in Tribal Court and increases the value of cases that can be heard from $2,000 to $10,000.

Tribal Council also sent a Member Benefit Ordinance amendment out for a first reading to seek Tribal member input. The amendment would provide that distributions refused or not claimed by a designated beneficiary within 18 months of a Tribal member’s death be returned to the Member Benefit Fund to become part of the following year’s appropriation and distribution.

In other action, Tribal Council:

  • Approved applying for an Administration for Native Americans’ Elder In-Home Care & Nutrition grant that would bring the Tribe $585,684 over two years to develop a new In-Home Care and Nutrition Program for Elders and the disabled;

  • Approved applying for an Administration for Native Americans’ Esther Martinez Language Immersion grant that would bring the Tribe $868,076 over three years to expand the half-day Chinuk language immersion classrooms from K-3 to K-5 and help pay for after-school and summer Chinuk language support and assistance for parents and their infants to learn the Tribal language;

  • Approved nominating Tribal Council Chairwoman Cheryle A. Kennedy to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Institute of American Indian and Alaska Native Culture and Arts Development. The board consist of 13 members appointed by the president and the institute provides scholarly study of and instruction in Native American art and culture;

  • And approved the enrollment of three infants and nine non-infants into the Tribe because they meet the requirements outlined in the Enrollment Ordinance and Tribal Constitution.

Also included in the April 4 Tribal Council packet were approved authorizations to proceed and staff directives that directed Finance Officer Chris Leno to conduct a supplemental budget process to establish a $75,000 appropriation for the Elders Phase III housing development project, increased Medicare Part B payments to Tribal members from $121.80 to $135 monthly and from $365.40 to $405 quarterly, and directed General Manager David Fullerton or his designee to help with the potential food sovereignty assessment to be conducted in conjunction with Marion-Polk Food Share and the Grand Ronde Food Bank.

The entire meeting can be viewed on the Tribal website at by clicking on the News tab and then Video.