Weekly Board of Trustees meeting, June 6

MISSION – The Board of Trustees (Board) for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) held their weekly Monday morning meeting June 6.

Present at the meeting was Board Chair Kat Brigham, Vice Chari Aaron Ashley, Secretary Sally Kosey, General Council Chair Lindsey Watchman, Board members Lisa Ganuelas, Toby Patrick, Boots Pond and Corinne Sams. Treasurer Sandra Sampson was on travel.

The Board passed an amended poll for resolution 22-046, approving a grant application for Cay-Uma-Wa Head Start. The date on the polled sheet was changed to May 26 from June 26. A motion to ratify the polled motion, with changes, was made by Sams and seconded by Pond, the motion passed 7-0-0.

Under new business, resolution 22-047, a revision of the Nixyaawii Neighborhood Development Plan Cost was the first item on the agenda. A revision to the plan cost was shown in exhibit 1. The exhibit was confidential. Pond motioned to pass the resolution and the motion was seconded by Patrick before being passed 7-0-0

Resolution 22-048, which included a Timine Way North project contract cost price amendment, was next on the agenda. The price contract budget was in confidential exhibits 1c and 2.

The resolution gave the Housing Department authority, in consultation with the Finance Department, to set adjusted rent amounts for the Timine North apartments. According to the sixth resolved, the Housing Department is responsible for administering the rental units. The resolved states rent adjustments will only be allowable to cover project debt service, operational maintenance and will be capped at five percent in a single year. The resolved also mandates residents be given 90-days-notice before each rent increase.

Pond said during discussion that after the Board’s June 3 work session he asked that the tenant notice period be changed to 90 days from 30 days-notice, as suggested by staff initially. He said he had concerns about the notice period from his own experience living in apartments and the industry standard being closer to three months rather than one.

Chair Brigham said she talked to a “few board members” prior to it being changed in the resolution and those Board members agreed to the change.

She said, “Everyone seemed to be okay with it and I talked to Jonetta (Herrera) about making the change.”

Pond motioned to approve the resolution, which was seconded by Sams before it passed 7-0-0.

Under Executive Director (ED) Information, ED Donald Sampson brought forth four suggested motions to the Board.

The first suggest motion was to approve travel for interested Board members to attend the EcoTrust’s Honoring of Himeeqis Kaa’awn (Antone Minthorn) and celebration of his lifelong leadership to Tribal nations. A story on Minthorn’s honoring and celebration appeared on page A3 in the June CUJ. The event will be held in Portland on June 23.

Brigham, Watchman, Ganuelas and Patrick expressed interest before a motion was made by Pond and seconded by Kosey to approve their travel to the event. The motion passed 7-0-0.

The Board also passed three other motions suggested by the OED. The second motion was to approve Sampson to coordinate and schedule a meeting and tour of the Niimiipuu Energy Collective.

Brigham said she had also spoken to Yakama Nation Chair Delano Saluskin about touring their Tribal utility facilities and asked to include it in the motion regarding the Niimiipuu motion.

Sams made the suggested motion, with changes to include the Yakama tour, and it was seconded by Kosey. The motion passed 7-0-0.

The third motion was to approve Chair Brigham and Audie Huber to attend the final Willamette Falls Locks Commission meeting via Zoom June 6 and the fourth was approve Patrick to participate in Willamette Falls Lock Commission & Willamette Falls Locks Authority Gathering June 15. Both motions passed 7-0-0.

The ED Information also included an update on the Tribes’ search for an investment advisor, Sampson reported that after seven applications were submitted, the OED had narrowed it down to three candidates.

The Board asked that a tour of Wanaket Wildlife Area be added to their Board Outreach schedule during the June “black-out week.”

Interim Deputy Executive Director Teara Farrow Ferman said the Board’s outreach and touring schedule, started last year when Paul Rabb was Interim ED. Rabb made the recommendation to have weeks without any scheduled work sessions so the Board could focus on community engagement activities, take leave and conduct other activities.

“When we had Board Orientation in December we had a discussion on what they wanted to do.  OED gave recommendations that these black-out weeks could be for community engagement activities, field tours of CTUIR projects, Board sponsored events or activities, conduct training, schedule meetings with outside entities, take leave, etc.  They decided to have one each quarter.  For 2022 they scheduled the following dates; March 21-25, June 6-10, September 12-16 and December 19-23.

In March the Board toured the proposed Shoreline Re-conveyance lands, attended an Incident Command System 402 training and some Board members attended a Rangeland tour with DNR.

Watchman expressed concerns regarding the Enrollment Commission’s guidance for their policy work based on comments made by Enrollment Director Toni Minthorn during the Monthly Program Activity Reports (MPAS). MPAS is given by department directors to the Board on the first Monday of each month directly before the Board meeting.

Sampson indicated that Watchman’s questions would be followed up on. He also said there would be an update on the enrollment study requested by the Board.

Brigham brought up concerns regarding the Tribes’ involvement in the American Indian/Alaskan Native Advisory Committee. She said, “We’ve had Urban Indians say ‘we have a right too’ and it’s been very heated. The Urban Indians have been very outspoken about this and they say ‘we outnumber you Tribes and we have more in the city than you do on your reservations.’ Our response has been to ask, ‘do you have a treaty.’?”

Brigham said it’s been very heated and frustrating and recommended a letter be drafted and recommended that the other Nine Tribes sign.

Sams asked what the letter would address and what they would be signing.

“What would be signing on to? Even in urban areas they still have 506, what portion aren’t they being served on?” she said.

Kosey said when she served on the charter a letter was drafted saying Urban Indigenous groups would be included as advisory but the Nine Tribes would be head of charter.

Brigham asked the letter be found and brought back for Board review.

The next weekly Board meeting will be held June 13 at 9 a.m.