PASCO, WASHINGTON—The Chairman of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation and Matt Watkins, Mayor of Pasco, Washington, today signed a historic “Agreement in Principle” between their two governments at a ceremony held in Pasco.
“The Colville Tribes and the City of Pasco will be working closely together under the framework of this landmark agreement,” Colville Tribes’ Chairman Rodney Cawston said today. “This marks the beginning of what we know will be a long and successful partnership between us for the benefit of all our citizens.”
“This agreement formalizes a commitment between the City of Pasco and the Colville Tribes to further explore those things we have long had in common and what we might share in the future,” said Pasco Mayor Matt Watkins.
Cawston noted that the Tribes recently purchased property in Pasco as part of its efforts to recognize the area as the homeland of the Palus, one of the twelve Tribes in the Colville Confederation, and to increase awareness of their history and culture in this region. “Signing this agreement is an important first step in a series of collaborative efforts, and future agreements between our respective governments,” Cawston said. “The Colville Tribes will work closely with the City of Pasco and other officials in this area to realize important cultural, educational and economic development goals for our Palus people and the Colville Confederation as a whole.”
“The Pacific Northwest has a rich and interesting history that Pasco joined relatively recently at the end of the 19th century--while the Colville’s is much longer and deeper,” said Watkins. “As we enter this agreement we join formally not only in exploring our respective histories and cultures together, but also our mutual future in an increasingly interconnected world.”
Cawston and Watkins agreed that announcements of specific Tribal-City joint efforts will be made in the near future.
About the Colville Tribes: Today, more than 9,526 descendants of 12 aboriginal tribes of Indians are enrolled in the Confederated Tribes of the Colville. The tribes, commonly known by English and French names, are: the Colville, the Nespelem, the San Poil, the Arrow Lakes, the Palus, the Wenatchi (Wenatchee), the Chelan, the Entiat, the Methow, the southern Okanogan, the Moses Columbia and the Nez Perce of Chief Joseph’s Bands.
About the City of Pasco: One of the Tri-Cities of south-central Washington State, Pasco has a current population of 75,290. Boasting good schools, health care facilities, faith communities, numerous retail/professional opportunities, recreational areas, and predominantly good weather, Pasco is a place where people put down roots and raise families in a safe, forward-thinking, active environment.