Jamie Azure

Tribal Chairman   |   Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa

Open Public Meeting Report

Working Together Gets the Best Results

Chairman's Report

Open Public Meeting
April 29th, 2021

Zoom Conference w/ Federal Native Affairs Commission Chairman
  • Federal Native Affairs Commission Chairman US Senator Shatzof Hawaii who has replaced Senator Hoeven as Chairman of the Federal Native Affairs Commission.  
  • Zoom Introduction and a quick rundown of some of the federal issues that the Turtle Mountains has faced, ongoing plans, and where the Tribe is moving towards in the future. Reminded the esteemed senator of the recent great strides this tribe has made including the push on our road systems, our renovation of the housing systems, and our ongoing battle with illegal drugs and the ramifications of addiction for example. 
Monthly United Tribes & UT Gaming Association Mtgs
  • On Friday April 2nd, Councilman Nathan Davis and I attended our monthly United Tribes, United Tribes Technical College, and United Tribes Gaming Association meeting. While these are three separate boards, we meet for all three on the same day. I’ve had the honor to serve as Chairman of all three for the last 2 years but was equally as honored to pass the Chairmanship of the Gaming Association to Standing Rock councilman Charles Walker per our bylaws as I termed out timewise in that role. I’m excited to continue to move forward as Chairman of the United Tribes and the United Tribes college as voted by our 5 sovereign Nation peers. 
TMCARES Updates
  • We continue to meet on the TM Cares projects every Monday. While we are fortunate to have received an extension until December 2021, we face more unprecedented issues. The relief programs that have been set in place like the quarantine homes and Cares Packages have continued without interruption. Programs set in placeduring 2020 are being budgeted and reset like the community gravel programs. Tribal Transportation and Road Dept. director Ron Trottier jr. is giving real time updates during the Open Public meeting concerning not only the monumental 3-year Jack Rabbit Road project but also the focus on 225 sections of repairs across our reservation that will be in full swing by the next open public meeting.  
Swearing in TISA Board
  • On April 16th. I and CouncilmanTrottier had the opportunity to travel to Trenton to congratulate the newly elected Trenton Indian Service Area (TISA) board. As a duty under my official capacity as Chairman of TMBI, I was grateful to swear in Chairman of the board Duane Rabbe and board members. The conversation revolved around commitment to communication for the betterment of our Tribal members. Tribal Government and the TISA board look forward to working together for the foreseeable future.  
Other Duties as Assigned...
  • The reason why I will be absent from the usual TM Open Public meeting on April 29th
  • An invitation to speak on a national zoom podcast at this year’s spring NOFOA Conference has been accepted. Rosebud Sioux Tribe President Rodney Bordeaux and myself will speak during the session “Standing for Tomorrow: Reflecting on Pandemic Lessons.” 
  • We will cover two distinct points of view from the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa and Rosebud Sioux Tribes respectively. Two sovereign Nations in the same region but absolute different dynamics and demographics. 
  • Subjects such as Tribal Community Snapshots, Crisis communication in not only our community but with other governments (State/Federal/Tribal), Sovereignty as Public Health, Federal Aid management and the lessons we’ve learned, and a message to the Future leaders of not only our Nations but Native Nation as a whole.
  • Statements and breakdowns of the session will be released from the Tribe in the next few weeks. 
Always Moving Forward...
  • We’re also hoping that by the next Open Public Meeting we will have detailed updates on the ‘Hero’s Act Funding’ federal aid from the United States Treasury. At this time, the Tribe is awaiting the procedures that the Federal Government is applying to this funding. Once that is received, we will start the process of internal controls and our own Tribal procedures. Early indication from the many consultation meetings we’ve had tell us that there will be less restrictions in many areas but a bit stricter in others. Tribal government looks forward to not only addressing immediate need but planning for the next generations of this Tribe by making sure those generations have a solid base to build upon with opportunities we’ve never had before. At the beginning and end of every day, that continues to be the priority bases of every decision made. 

“if at first you don’t succeed, get a bigger nail.”

Stephen King

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