Quapaw OK, (September 18th 2021) - Quapaw Nation had a productive meeting on Saturday, beginning with the installation of officers, and highlighted through progressive action by way of resolution.
Vice-Chairwoman Callie Bowden and Business Committee Members Michelle Newton, Zack Turley, and Jeremy Olsen each won their reelection bids. A previous challenge had held that installation date up. Most of those reappointments were finalized today, September 18th, 2021. Zack Turley was unable to attend because of an emergency, but will be sworn in at a later date.
(Zack Turley not pictured below)
In August, the Business Committee approved a resolution of Equal Distribution of the Bear funds spurred by Quapaw Nation leadership's push for transparency and a petition asking for the equal distribution as well. Today, that petition made its way on the agenda and was subsequently approved by a majority vote. The only resolution change asked for regarded the resolution date and number by BC member Lloyd Buffalo.
Recent threats, both made publicly and privately, prompted Resolution 091821-B, which allows all elected officials to conceal carry a firearm anywhere within the jurisdictional boundaries of Quapaw Nation. The motion to approve, made by Vice-Chairwoman Bowden, went without question by other officials and those in attendance.
Quapaw Nation leadership voted for increased Social services to all members today. Elders, 65 and over, will see an increase of 25 percent to be used towards utility assistance, while all other members will see an increase of 20 percent.
"It's been too long since these benefits have been increased." Stated Secretary-Treasurer Guy Barker. "We're happy to increase services when we can. Personally, I'd like to see us increase services in some form every year. With the retirement of our debt, I believe we can make that happen."
Another increase in services came in the form of education reimbursement as well as graduation incentives. Tuition reimbursement increased to $200 per credit hour, up previously from $150 per credit hour; those who achieve graduation will also see a nice incentive in reaching their goals moving forward in the form of a sliding scale. Members graduating from High School will receive an incremental financial incentive – that benefit increases as the level of degree does.
"Quapaw Nation is doing well. The goal of this administration will always be to deliver those positive impacts back to the members." Said Chairman Byrd in an statement made this week. "It's time for Quapaw Nation to begin reinvesting in our youth, and education is a top priority. I will keep pushing this agenda until we can provide free college tuition for our young adults. Today is a step towards achieving that goal, and there are more exciting things to come."
In the open forum, Constitution Committee Chairman Roman Kihega gave an update on the Constitution and stated that he looks forward to the meeting with the Business Committee slated to take place on September 23rd. Chairman Byrd said he hopes to see something put to paper as we near one year of the Constitution Committee being established. Continued updates from the Constitution Committee will be moved to the committee report section in the future.
Please continue to follow the Quapaw Post for all of your Quapaw Nation news.