Tribal Government & News

Tribal Council OKs $6.2 million expenditure to fix Spirit Mountain Casino roof

11.07.2018 Dean Rhodes Tribal Council, Spirit Mountain Casino

Spirit Mountain Casino is getting a new roof.

During its Wednesday, Nov. 7, meeting, Tribal Council gave permission for Spirit Mountain Gaming Inc. to retain funds not to exceed $6.2 million to repair and improve the roof, which covers the area of almost three football fields.

Casino Facilities Manager Ron Reibach said the 165,000-square-foot roof covers the first three phases of construction at the casino and was installed between 1995 and ’97.

Current problems include water leaks and many penetrations for heating, ventilation and air conditioning units that cause weak spots and contribute to the leakage. The project will include replacing many of the HVAC units, he said.

“We originally had a 20-year guarantee on the roof,” Reibach said. “We certainly got our life out of it, but now it’s time to replace it.”

He estimates the project, which will start in spring 2019, will take a couple of months to complete.

Tribal Council also sent proposed amendments to the Enrollment Ordinance out for a first reading. The amendments change all references to “Enrollment Board” to “Enrollment Committee” and provide guidelines for the committee’s duties and allowable meetings.

The proposed amendments limit the committee to no more than four meetings a year and allows one special meeting per month if the committee is assigned a specific task by Tribal Council, professional enrollment training is identified, a protest of a committee decision has been filed or the committee receives notice from the Enrollment staff that a special meeting is necessary.

Tribal Attorney Brooks Wakeland said at the Tuesday, Nov. 6, Legislative Action Committee meeting that the proposed amendments do not affect enrollment requirements.

The proposed amendments will be advertised in Smoke Signals for two editions and Tribal members will have an opportunity to comment on them before they return to Tribal Council for possible adoption.

In other action, Tribal Council also:

  • Approved an addendum to the Portland Harbor Superfund Site Natural Resources Damage Assessment Plan that provides an update on the current status of the plan and more detailed information on the proposed focus for conducting the remaining phases of the cleanup;

  • Approved an agreement to accept an $81,000 grant from the Collins Foundation to help document Portland Harbor and Willamette River contamination-related changes in Tribal traditions and culture;

  • Approved an amendment to the cooperative agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency that would provide up to $291,000 to fund the work of the Tribe’s technical consultant and Tribal employee participation regarding the Portland Harbor cleanup project;

  • And approved the enrollment of three infants and one noninfant into the Tribe because they meet the eligibility requirements outlined in the Tribal Constitution and Enrollment Ordinance.

Also included in the Nov. 7 Tribal Council packet were approved authorizations to proceed that authorize the Natural Resources Department and Ceremonial Hunting Board to implement the Ceremonial Harvest Distribution Policy and approved transferring $12,551 from contingency to Facilities to cover replacement of a commercial dishwasher in the Community Center.

Cultural Advisor Bobby Mercier made the cultural presentation to open the meeting, discussing how Cultural Resources and Natural Resources employees are keeping an eye out for fish to arrive in Reservation waterways. Once a fish arrives and is caught, an impromptu ceremony will be held in the late afternoon to allow school children to participate.

The meeting started at 4 p.m. because of the end of Daylight Saving Time. Tribal Council meetings traditionally are held an hour earlier November through March.

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