ADMINISTRATIVE/ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT REPORT
The 2017-2018 fiscal year has been very involved for all of our elected Peoria Tribal officials. The Committee held several meetings and met with a number of architects, to review estimates and preliminary drawings for a proposed expansion to Buffalo Run Casino. The Business Committee voted to approve the Management Contract with Direct Enterprise Development, L.L.C., and have resubmitted it to the National Indian Gaming Commission for their approval.
The 2nd Annual Buffalo Casino Pow-Wow was held the first Saturday, April 1st last year. The event was once again well received and attracted Native American dancers from across the nation. Make plans now to attend this exciting one day dance event again this year. In June 2017, we celebrated our 20th Annual Peoria Tribal Pow-wow. The Pow-wow Committee worked hard to coordinate a memorable event, from commemorative t-shirts to honoring our Head Man and Woman Dancer from our very first Pow-wow. We had good attendance, but hope to see even more of you at this year’s event scheduled for June 22-24, 2018.
The Peoria Tribe, along with all of the tribes in Ottawa County, have joined with the City of Miami to work on several issues that could potentially affect our local citizens, community and tribal properties. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), has proposed raising the flood elevation by five feet in Ottawa County. If this change occurs, it would require many homeowners and businesses in our area to carry flood insurance. We will continue to stay involved and monitor this situation, providing input to federal and local authorities as needed. Preliminary work has begun on the fee-to-trust application process for the tribal property formerly known as the Miami Golf & Country Club. Logan Pappenfort, Special Projects Manager, will be taking the lead on this project moving forward.
The Business Committee gave the approval for the Peoria Tribal Housing Authority to apply for the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Indian Community Development Block Grant (ICDBG) again this year. This funding will allow the Housing Authority to rehabilitate some of the older units and apartments that are in need of maintenance or upgrades. Last year, this particular grant helped us provide storm shelters for each unit in the low-rent apartments, along with new playground equipment, and heat and air upgrades.
Other Tribal grant programs continue to run very smooth, thanks to a well-seasoned staff. Each member of the Peoria Tribal staff strives to assist all tribal members with their needs. Our staff members understand that a program operating successfully will ensure potential opportunities for grant funding, which in turn benefits our tribal members, and all Native Americans in our service area.
The Peoria Tribal Administration continues to look into new areas that will assist tribal members and expand tribal programs. Please remember, you are always welcome to call or visit with your elected Peoria Tribal officials, or stop by the tribal office any time you have a question or concern.
John P. Froman