News from Warm Springs – Kah-Nee-Ta to close, Tribes get VSO, wolf pups born

Kah-Nee-Ta to close

It’s official. The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs are closing the Kah-Nee-Ta Resort and Spa following after considering  options, including eco-tourism and film development at the tribal council meeting Tuesday. None of them got the support needed to act on them.

A press release quoted council member Carina Miller as saying, “It is irresponsible to continue pouring money into an enterprise that has demonstrated over many years that it cannot generate enough revenue to cover expenses.” 

The facility will close September 5, but Tribal leaders say they are open to considering additional options for the property.

The resort was purchased by the tribe in 1961. It features a hotel, spa, pool, cottages, water park and recreational vehicle park. The closure will mean the layoff of 146 employees

The Indian Head Casino was once part of the hotel at the spa, but the Tribes moved the casino operation on the much heavier-traveled Highway 26, following a failed attempt to put a new, large casino in Cascade Locks.

Warm Springs will get dedicated veteran service officer

The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs and Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs signed a memorandum of understanding this week that will enable the tribal government to establish the state’s first-ever tribal veteran service office. Once established, the tribal veteran service office will operate similar to a county veteran service office, providing direct services to tribal veterans under ODVA’s power of attorney. Like all county veteran service officers, the tribal veteran service officers will be trained and certified through ODVA. This is the first state-tribal partnership of this kind in Oregon’s history. ODVA will work closely with the Tribal Council of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs to develop and implement this new office. An anticipated opening date has not yet been set.

Wolf pups spotted on Reservation

MOUNT HOOD, Ore. (AP) — Two wolf pups have been seen near Mount Hood, marking the first known reproduction by wolves in the northern part of the Cascade Mountains in Oregon since wolves began returning to the state in the past decade. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said Wednesday that a remote camera on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation captured images of two pups on Aug. 10. Wolves in western Oregon are protected by the federal Endangered Species Act. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs are monitoring the wolves. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports that as of 2017 Oregon was home to at least 124 wolves, mostly concentrated in the northeast corner of the state.