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Sault Tribe’s services, facilities and postponed events during COVID-19 closure

Untitled 1Due to the extensive number of events on Sault Tribe’s schedule, a list has been developed to help tribal members navigate the many postponements. It will be updated at least twice a day as time goes on. Thank you.

New entries will be added to the top of list.

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. —Sault Tribe printed thousands of checks to members yesterday, to be mailed out today, Chief Financial Officer Bob Schulte said. Including the normal payroll checks also printed Thursday, the total is more than $15 million, mostly to communities in the eastern U.P., Schulte said.

“The local economy is going to like us when they see all this money floating around,” he said.

Tribal officials expect a wave of members seeking to cash their payments at Kewadin Casino or at local banks and credit unions.

Schulte said casino staffers are preparing for a high number of requests to cash the checks, and he said Huntington Bank, Central Savings Bank, PNC Bank and Soo Co‐Op Credit Union have been notified that they might see much higher numbers of requests to cash checks.

It took about six hours Wednesday to print the $1,000 disaster relief checks, Schulte said, and payroll employees were assisted by staff from other departments in putting the checks into envelopes. All the relief checks were taken to the post office yesterday afternoon.

He said 12,340 disaster‐relief checks totaling $12.34 million were printed.

The amounts of the hazard pay checks varied, but those, also printed yesterday, totaled $1.1 million. In addition, regular payroll checks, issued this week, totaled roughly $2 million.

That’s a total of $15.44 million, most of it destined for tribal members in the seven county service area, Schulte said.

Executive Director Christine McPherson applauded the financial assistance for tribal members.

“I would like to thank the Tribal Chairman and the Tribal Board of Directors for the support and authorization of these programs for the benefit of our tribal members. I know it will not solve all issues but will assist in a small way to help our members. These types of large projects involve many tribal team members’ efforts, and it is truly appreciated."

Melissa Morehouse, who works in Enrollment, said the number of disaster‐relief checks was about double the usual number of annual elder dividend payments and the operation was under a tight deadline.

Morehouse said 14,000 applications were sent out to tribal members Aug. 7, and Enrollment staffers added three people during the week to help enter the returned applications. (Applications are still being accepted.)

Then the printing and envelope stuffing began. Laurie Mansfield in Payroll said she monitored the printer, reloading paper and making sure there were no jams or other problems. Morehouse was in the Payroll office operating the check‐stuffing machine. On the third floor of the administration building, employees from Payroll, Enrollment, Accounting and Legal, plus one board member, hand‐stuffed thousands of checks.

“It went smoothly for as big a project as it was,” Morehouse said. “We figured we would have to do that over a two‐day period.”

Attached are the updated wellness and recreation opportunities for Sault Tribe members across the service area.

Recreation Opportunities

The Sault Tribe Language & Culture Department and Sault Tribe Facilities would like to announce that the Niigaanagiizhik Ceremonial Building is now open for community use with strict COVID guidelines in place. Due to ongoing construction at the building, community use will be restricted to nights and weekends at this time. However this will not affect the use of the building for funerals, which always supersede any other function at the building. 

We appreciate the patience and understanding that was given, as we did our due diligence to prepare our building for use during this global pandemic. 

To schedule use of building, please contact Jordan Pilcher at 906‑203‑5521 or Colleen Medicine at 906‑632‑1347.
Sault Tribe Language & Culture
Sault Tribe Facilities

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this year’s Health Fair will consist of a drive thru Flu Clinic and a health and wellness goodie bag giveaway. 

Drive thru flu shots are available for:
Sault Tribe members 18 years or older
Other federally recognized tribes
Non-native spouse ($10 co-pay)
Sault Tribe employees 

Even if you don’t wish to receive the Flu shot, please feel free to drive thru at any location and pick up our complimentary health and wellness goodie bag. 

See flyer for dates locations and times. 

Flu clinic Drive-Thru and Health Fair Flyer

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. —The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians tribal board of directors has approved a one-time reimbursement program (up to $1,000 per student) to help K-12 students enrolled in a virtual or hybrid education program. Applicants must provide justification for how the technology-related purchase is needed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The program is open to any Sault Tribe K-12 student residing in the tribe’s seven-county service area who has been enrolled in a virtual or hybrid education program for the 2020-2021 school year. Parents (or guardians) must provide proof that the student was enrolled in a virtual or hybrid education program prior to Sept. 8, 2020. 

Applicants must provide the following information by Oct. 30 to qualify:
 —Completed K-12 technology enhancement application 
 —Copy of student’s tribal card
 —Parent/Legal Guardian IRS W-9 form
 —Proof of current enrollment in a virtual or hybrid education program  
 —Receipt for purchased item (with proof of purchase between March 1 and Oct. 30, 2020) 

Applications can be found at www.saulttribe.com under the Education tab. 

Reimbursement will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis for allowable expenses only. The Sault Tribe will have full discretion to approve or deny reimbursements on an item-by-item basis. No reimbursements will be allowed for personal items such as cell phones, cell phone bills, in home internet bills, televisions, gaming consoles/accessories, etc. Please see the list of allowable expenses below:
 —Computers (laptops/desktops/chrome books) 
 —Computer accessories (chargers, keyboards, mice, webcams, external hard drives, etc.)
 —iPad/tablets or accessories (chargers, cases, headphones, screen protectors etc.)
 —Technology-related software (Microsoft Office, Adobe Pro, etc.)
 —Printers, printer ink, scanners 
 —Online coursework subscriptions, e-textbooks (hard copy text books excluded)
 —Wi-Fi routers, internet modems, wi-fi signal boosters  

All applications and applicable documents must be submitted to the Sault Tribe Education Dept. no later than Oct. 30, 2020 by 5 p.m. Reimbursement checks will be mailed to qualified applicants early December. Please call or email with eligibility questions:   
 Sault Tribe Education Division
 Attn: Cody Jodoin
 2 Ice Circle, Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783 
 Email - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 Phone - 906‑635‑7010

APPLICATION K-12 Technology Enhancement Reimbursement

Mukwa dodemMukwa dodem
Bear clan

The Mukwa dodem are the healers and protectors of the tribe, Bear Clan members are the strong and steady police of the tribe. The People of the Bear Clan concentrate on the wellbeing of our people.

© 2020 - Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. All Rights Reserved.

Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY