Tribal Government & News

Tribal Council approves conservation property acquisition

11.29.2023 Danielle Harrison Tribal Council


By Danielle Harrison

Smoke Signals editor

Tribal Council approved a resolution to acquire a 57.8-acre property donation during its Wednesday, Nov. 29, meeting.

Tribal Lands Manager Jan Reibach said during the Tuesday, Nov. 28, Legislative Action Committee meeting that due to the declining health of the property owner and his “strong desire” to donate the land to the Tribe, the property known as Deer Path East near Falls City needed to be transferred as soon as possible.  

“If things go well, we will own it by the end of the year,” Reibach said.

The property will be pulled out of the total 110 acres that the Tribe will eventually acquire as part of the Willamette Wildlife Mitigation Program. In 2022, the Tribe’s Natural Resources Department submitted an application to the program to begin the acquisition process.

“It is the largest donation in Willamette Wildlife Mitigation Program history,” Reibach said.

The Tribe will pay the approximate $45,000 closing costs out of the Lands Department’s existing 2023 budget and be reimbursed later by Bonneville Power Administration. A conservation easement will be granted to BPA.

Deer Path East will become the Tribe’s 12th conservation property and increase the conservation property acreage to more than 2,051 acres.

In other action, Tribal Council:

  • Approved the fourth amendment to the Bureau of Indian Affairs Self-Governance funding agreement. The Tribe will receive a total of $3,652,713 in 2024, which is an increase of $692,107 from 2023;
  • Approved appointing Tribal Council member Matthew Haller to the Spirit Mountain Gaming Inc. Board of Directors with a term ending on Sept. 30, 2026, or until he is no longer on Tribal Council;
  • Set the agenda for the Sunday, Dec. 3, General Council meeting. The Natural Resources Department will give a program report. Additionally, there will be Elders Committee nominations taken both virtually and in-person;
  • And approved an amended contract between the Tribe and GLAS Architects of Eugene for professional services relating to a future Tribal charter school.

To watch the entire meeting, visit the Tribal government’s website at and click on the Videos tab.