The Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians celebrated the opening of its new Public Safety Building on Wednesday, Jan. 25. The building marks the first time both Tuolumne Rancheria Tribal Security and the Tribal Fire Department will reside together in a singular location to demonstrate a continued commitment to the community. The momentous occasion was commemorated with a tribal blessing, ribbon-cutting ceremony and luncheon.
“The Tribe’s new Public Safety Building and the partnership of our two safety departments is a great source of pride for The Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians,” said Tribal Chairman, Kevin Day. “The first of its kind in the area, the building will foster a special, unique relationship between the two entities while also representing the continued self-reliance of our people and our commitment to the community.”
To celebrate the opening of the new building, members of The Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indian Community came together for a traditional tribal blessing. They were later joined by members of the Tuolumne County Chamber of Commerce, other Central California Tribal communities and local fire and sheriff’s departments for a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially opening the building. The event was followed by a celebratory luncheon at Black Oak Casino Resort.
Located at Black Oak Casino Resort, the Public Safety Building is 8,640 square feet and will be home to the Tribal Security Department staff of 16 and the Fire Department’s 20 employees. While under the same roof, the departments will share knowledge and resources to serve the tribal community, the Black Oak Casino Resort and the greater community at-large. Together they will work to maintain the high standards each department has individually established when responding to calls.
The Tuolumne Economic Development Authority (TEDA Inc.) worked with local contractors to construct the building, which was recently the recipient of the Tuolumne County Chamber of Commerce’s New Building Award. The award was given earlier in the month and designated by the Chamber’s ambassadors.
The Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians is a federally recognized Indian Tribe located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in Tuolumne County. The Tuolumne Rancheria was purchased on Oct. 26, 1910 and established as one of two local reservations for landless Indians. The original acquisition consisted of 289.52 acres. Today there are over 2000 fee and trust acres.
With the opening of Black Oak Casino on May 15, 2001 and the re-opening of the new Black Oak Casino Resort on May 18, 2005, the Tribe was able to pursue its goals and objectives stated in the Mission Statement of the Tribe: “The Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians is a Sovereign Nation that is dedicated to uphold Social and Economic Stability through Self-Reliance and to promote Health, Safety and Welfare of our Indian People.”