- In this week's broadcast:
- We feature Northeastern State University’s Early Settlement East Mediation Program that offers a way for people to seek free or low-cost mediation services.
- Also, we revisit a story on artist Buffalo Gouge who designed the Cherokee Phoenix limited edition Cherokee National Holiday shirts.
- ...plus much more.
The letter states that after approving the Cherokee Nation’s Gaming Act amendments in 2014, NIGC Chairman Jonodev Osceola Chaudhuri noted his “misgivings over some aspects of the gaming act.”
“In particular, the provision of the gaming act that requires tribal regulations and controls not to exceed federal control undermines the spirit of the NIGC regulations, especially the MICS (Minimum Internal Control Standards) – which are designed to be the ground floor of regulations upon which a tribe could build up from to address its specific requirements,” the letters states.
Chaudhuri states the act’s provisions “limit the ability” of the Cherokee Nation Gaming Commission “to create controls it finds uniquely and perhaps better suited to its needs.” He states the MICS are in place to allow tribes to develop “tribal-specific regulations,” which are unique to their gaming operations.
The letter also states that by the tribe amending its Gaming Act it has chosen not to heighten its use of MICS and has chosen to work by the standards set in place by federal regulations and state compact terms. The letter states that if the CN continues to work under the amended Gaming Act it could be difficult for “tribal regulators” to determine what would “exceed” the “NIGC MICS.”
Two women play gaming machines at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa in Catoosa, Oklahoma. National Indian Gaming Commission officials sent a letter on Aug. 16 to Cherokee Nation officials stating that NIGC officials would conduct an oversight internal control assessment at Hard Rock in September. WILL CHAVEZ/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Gary Dale Douglas, 71, of Coweta; James Clarence Huggins, 95, of Fort Gibson; and James David Murphy, 65, of Stilwell, each received a medal acknowledging their service to the country from Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden.
Spc. Douglas was born Feb. 27, 1945, in Houston, Missouri. He was drafted into the Army in 1967, attended basic training at Fort Bliss, Texas, and advanced individual training at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri.
He was sent to Vietnam in October 1967 and was assigned to the 585th Dump Truck Company. Douglas drove a jeep for the first platoon sergeant and then the company commander. After the company commander was killed in an ambush, he drove a jeep for the second platoon sergeant.
Douglas was ambushed twice, first by the Viet Cong and then by the North Vietnamese regular army. As a result, he earned two Silver Star medals for valor in combat. Douglas took over the night crew of the motor pool for the remainder of his service after the second ambush. The motor pool was responsible for the upkeep and repair of the vehicles. Douglas received an honorable discharge in 1968.
Standing, from left, Tribal Councilor Don Garvin, Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden honor U.S. Army veteran James Clarence Huggins with a Cherokee Nation Medal of Patriotism during the Aug. 15 Tribal Council meeting in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. COURTESY
During her reign, she will be a goodwill ambassador for the tribe and will promote the government, language, history and traditions of the Cherokee people.
McCoy said winning this title means she gets “to carry on the traditions of the past winners.”
“I also hope to spread awareness about who we are and what we do as a tribe, as well as my platform,” she said.
McCoy competed against five other girls in three categories: cultural presentation, impromptu question and a speech on their platform. For each respective category, McCoy demonstrated how to make traditional shell shackles for stomp dancing, answered why she thought the Cherokee society has always held women in high esteem and gave a speech on the importance of building self-confidence in Native youth.
Stacey Stephens, Cherokee Nation citizen and program director, said mediation costs could be free or as low as $5 and that mediators are “neutral” when dealing with opposing parties.
“We will sit down with both sides of the case that are in conflict, and we’re a neutral mediator…We will listen to both sides and let each side have a fair chance of speaking and expressing why they’re there, what they would like to see happen, and we help them work together and come to a resolution and hopefully where everyone leaves in a win-win situation,” Stephens said. “It is in a confidential, informal setting. We’re not in a courtroom. It’s not court. They’re not on trial, and usually we’re in a private room off somewhere.”
She said the grant-funded service is offered in Adair, Cherokee, Delaware, Mayes, Muskogee, Sequoyah and Wagoner counties.
She said while in mediation it’s the mediator’s job to help everyone feel “comfortable.”
Taylor’s late July visit to Cambridge, Massachusetts, was his second visit there in two years. In June 2015, the 17-year-old Cherokee Nation citizen traveled to MIT with fellow Broken Arrow students to present their idea for producing less costly food for tilapia fish farms that help sustain communities in developing countries.
Taylor said during his weeklong visit in July for the outreach program, students were invited to take courses such as electronics, aerospace engineering, computer science development or underwater robotics. He chose aerospace engineering.
He said he studied calculus and physics and made small rockets using water bottles to calculate how high they would travel. He said he also learned about financial aid opportunities, applying for college and what to look for in a college.
Taylor said his only cost was paying for the flight to Cambridge.
The comprehensive budget is a result of the operating budget, used for tribal expenses and expected costs, approved at $656.4 million plus the capital budget, which includes land purchases and construction of facilities and roads, approved at $277.7 million.
The committee-approved FY 2017 comprehensive budget surpasses what the committee approved during the FY 2016 budget hearings by about $167.1 million.
“To be more specific, this is the (Cherokee) Nation’s largest ever beginning-of-the-year budget,” Treasurer Lacey Horn said.
In 2015, the committee approved the FY 2016 comprehensive budget for $767.1 million. Approximately, $647.7 million was for the operating budget and $119.4 million was for the capital budget.
Turtle, 49, is from Stilwell but lived in Kansas, Oklahoma, until five years ago. That’s when she got extremely sick and doctors told her the disease had progressed enough to necessitate dialysis. So she and her husband Mike Turtle moved to Tahlequah to be closer to a dialysis center.
PKD causes cysts to take the place of normal tissue. They enlarge the kidneys and make them work poorly, leading to kidney failure. The disease also runs in families.
As a child, Pam watched her mother suffer from PKD, so Pam carried a lot of responsibility, including helping keep the house and family together.
“My mom was sick the whole time I grew up. In fact, I had to miss some school to take my mom to dialysis and to drive her back. When I was 24 years old I was going to donate a kidney to my mother. I had just had my second child – my last child – and they told me I couldn’t. They told me I had the same disease that my mom had,” Pam said. “They had found cysts bilaterally on my kidneys, and they told me that I would have to start seeing a doctor.”
Following her kidney transplant surgery, Cherokee Nation citizen Pam Turtle, who suffers from polycystic kidney disease, had to take 26 pills a day to prevent illness following the transplant. Now she only takes about eight pills a day and will for the rest of her life. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Founder and Executive Director Celia Xavier will host the festival. This year she’s partnered with Brent Learned of Native Pop, who will feature top Native Pop artists for a live art exhibit at 6 p.m. at the NSU Jazz Lab on Sept. 2 for the red carpet reception on opening night.
The festival takes place Sept. 2-4 at the Dream Theater.
Xavier said the festival saw great success in 2015 and expects to have more than 1,000 attendees during the three-day weekend. She added that this year’s festival will bring a “wide range of films and shorts,” and each one is indigenous with some being in their own language. Proceeds from the silent auction to be held during the red carpet event will be used to benefit the Student Filmmaking Bootcamp.
Films and short films will begin screening at 2 p.m. on Sept. 3 and children’s movies will be on Sept. 4 beginning at 2 p.m.