CTUIR Outlook Featured at Pendleton Chamber Event - Economic Outlook

February 2013, CUJ

PENDLETON – When Dave Tovey makes his presentation at the Pendleton Chamber of Commerce Economic Outlook breakfast Feb. 20, he won’t be reminiscing about the things that were completed in 2012.

Rather, Tovey, the Executive Director for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, will make his remarks about the future – what to expect in 2013.

He’ll also recommend ways that the region can come together to get things done.

“The Umatilla Tribes have been leaders over time in looking at regional approaches to achieve common outcomes with everything from ATNI, CRITFC, ONABEN, and plenty others. We also maintain a strong presence within out ceded area in resource management and believe we should exert our influence and expertise for economic development in northeast Oregon and southwest Washington.”

(Those acronyms stand for Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, and Oregon Native American Business and Entrepreneurial Network.)

Included among the projects Tovey will talk about

  • Completing two major new construction projects – the transit facility and the field station for the Department of Science and Engineers located adjacent to the Nixyaawii Governance Center;
  • Transit Program (bus service) which already connects riders to Hermiston, Walla Walla and La Grande, is contemplating new stops in Irrigon and Umatilla;
  • Working with strong local, state and federal support toward completion of a final Umatilla River Water Settlement with a Federal Negotiation Team;
  • Integrating the Umatilla Reservation Housing Authority as a department of Tribal government;
  • Completing capital improvement projects started last year with accelerated planning for near-term priorities in housing and health (new clinic and wellness center);
  • Completing final stages of approval for an additional land lease at Coyote Business Park (last year Dairy Queen and Subway subleased property for their stores);
  • Taking preliminary look at construction of a single wind generator near Tamástslikt Cultural Institute to augment other energy efficiency measures at the museum;
  • Assist tribal members building homes on lots purchased from the Tribes;
  • Procurement changes to buy internal, buy Indian, and buy local;
  • Continued growth of the Nixyaawii Chamber of Commerce;
  • Support for youth entrepreneurship projects being slated through the Tribes’ Business Service Center;
  • Continued support of youth leadership efforts, including a proposed Youth Organization;
  • Continued support of Nixyaawii Community School

“Sometimes it’s hard to gauge when in the midst of time, but we showcase in forums like this our most recent projects. Today, we have so many things happening at all levels of the Tribal community that it’s a challenge to pull a simple list of things together. As you look at what everyone has done here, there has to be realization that the Tribes have a positive effect on the region’s economy and quality of life,” Tovey said.

This story originally appeared in the CUJ. The Confederated Umatilla Journal is the monthly newspaper of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Pendleton, Oregon.