May 22, 2023

Wyden, Merkley: Nearly $3 Million to Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation and Burns Paiute Tribe to Build Affordable Housing and Repair Cultural Heritage Center

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation and the Burns Paiute Tribe have earned federal grants to build affordable housing and repair a cultural heritage center.

“Affordable housing and rehabilitated cultural resources are crucial to continued Tribal independence and sovereignty,” Wyden said. “I am gratified to see these dollars go toward resources so that members of the Warm Springs tribe have access to an affordable, safe place to call home and Burns Paiute members can continue to preserve their heritage for generations to come.”

“Affordable, reliable housing and cultural preservation are both crucial for Oregon’s Tribal communities,” Merkley said. “I look forward to seeing the benefits these projects will bring to the Warm Springs and Burns Paiute Tribes, and will continue to fight to bring federal resources to Oregon’s Tribes.” 

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Indian Community Development Block Grant program provides grants to support tribal sovereignty and independence. The Warm Springs Housing Authority will use $2 million to build eight homes to increase availability of affordable housing for lower-income Tribal members. The Burns Paiute Tribe will use more than $910,000 to rehabilitate the Tukwahone Cultural and Heritage Center.

“Warm Springs is currently experiencing a housing crisis. There are not enough homes for the families in the community, which results in many families living in overcrowded and substandard conditions. Being able to provide an additional 8 affordable and energy-efficient housing units will truly be a gift to our community. It will be a joy seeing the smiles on families’ faces when they enter their new home for the first time,” said Danielle Wood, Executive Director of Warm Springs Housing Authority.

“The Burns Paiute Tribe is so incredibly grateful to receive this ICDBG Grant for out Tukwahone’ Heritage Center in downtown Burns. It will be a welcoming space where our culture can be seen and experienced through historical artifacts and multimedia storytelling as well as through the retail sales of traditional handcrafted wares. Additionally, we will host a business incubator for tribal members, tribal corporations and local entrepreneurs. The Tukwahone’ Heritage Center will be a catalyst for our Tribe and the local community to spur innovation and growth for all,” said Tracy Kennedy, Director of Planning and Economic Development for the Burns Paiute Tribe.