News from the Pacific Northwest

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Hoh acquires 160 acres from state Natural Resources Department

HOH, Wash. - The Hoh Indian Nation has acquired 160 acres of former school trust land for $740,000, boosting its land area from 443 to 603 acres, just short of a square mile.

The state Department of Natural Resources manages about 1.8 million acres of trust land to generate revenue to help support public schools. However, not all of these lands are best suited for income production; some have higher values for ecological, recreational or other uses. DNR sells or transfers trust land and uses the proceeds to purchase other property that has the potential to generate revenue to support public schools.

As specified by legislation, use of transferred land is restricted to fish and wildlife habitat, open space, or housing and essential government services.

''With the continued drop in the West Coast housing market and the credit crunch, the deeper slide in timber purchasing has finally affected state trust sales and revenue,'' Commissioner of Public Lands Doug Sutherland said.

''Fortunately, these management funds help us invest time and resources in new programs such as leasing trust lands for clean wind energy and high-end vineyard and winery complexes. Like our other efforts to find new markets, gradually these revenue sources will help offset timber-based revenue fluctuations and keep a steady flow of funds to our schools.''

Hoh has an enrollment of about 212, according to the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board. The Hoh Reservation was established in 1963, is surrounded by the Olympic National Forest and features about a mile of beachfront running east from the mouth of the Hoh River and south to Ruby Beach. The tidelands are abundant with butter clams, razor clams, crab and perch fishing.

Native films available for classrooms, groups

SEATTLE - Documentaries, dramas and profiles produced by First Nations Films are available to individuals, classrooms and organizations.

Topics include land claims, politics, spirituality and traditional music. All programs are 20 - 90 minutes in length.

First Nations Films has produced 12 films and is working on four more. It has won awards at the American Indian Film Festival and Dream Speakers Film Festival, and from the Canadian Cable Television, Dream Speakers and the Native American Journalists Association.

Titles include ''The Medicine Wheel,'' a story of First Nations spirituality told in the first person by a Cree woman from Manitoba; ''Vanishing Link,'' a personal and emotionally moving program about one woman's ''return'' to her spiritual roots and Native identity; and ''Living in Two Worlds,'' a documentary about young Native people and how they see themselves - their past, present and their future.

''Beat of the Drum'' profiles four well-known Canadian First Nations musical performers and songwriters. ''First Nations Role Models'' profiles prominent First Nations leaders in Canada. ''Native Women: Politics'' gives voice to Canadian Native women leaders.

Other topics include land issues, residential schools and women's health.

Visit www.firstnationsfilms.com to view film clips.

34th American Indian Housing Council Trade Show May 12 - 14

SEATTLE - The 34th National American Indian Housing Council Convention & Trade Show is May 12 - 14 at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel.

The convention opens May 12 at 8:15 a.m. with a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Chief Seattle Exhibit Hall, sponsored by Suquamish Tribe. Elders of the Northwest will share legendary stories of the Northwest mountains. Billy Frank Jr., Nisqually and chairman of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, is the scheduled keynote speaker. Miss Washington Elyse Umemoto, Yakama, is the scheduled guest speaker.

In the afternoon, there will be training sessions, introduction of green housing initiatives, and regional caucus meetings.

The convention continues May 13 with training sessions and an evening banquet. It concludes May 14 with a membership meeting.

For more information, visit www.naihc.net.

Northwest Coast Artists' Gathering June 3 - 4

JUNEAU, Alaska - The annual Northwest Coast Artists' Gathering is June 3 - 4 in the Old Armory.

The gathering is sponsored by Artstream Cultural Resources, Juneau Douglas City Museum and the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. It coincides with Sealaska Heritage Institute's Celebration 2008.

Day one offers a panel discussion, ''Finding Common Ground in First Nations Art: Bringing Together Cultural Traditions and Creativity.'' Panelists are Nick Galanin, Nathan Jackson and Marianne Nicholson; moderator: Aldona Jonaitis. Group art projects follow lunch.

The second day includes a PowerPoint presentation of attending artists' work, agency presentations on grants and other opportunities for artists, and a networking session.

Artists can bring their own pieces to show and work on, share materials, connect with artists and agencies, and build an artists' network.

Participation is free but limited to the first 150 people who register. Walk-ins will be permitted only if space is available. To register, visit www.artstream.net.

Energy projects sought in Indian country

SEATTLE - The U.S. Energy Department invites proposals for renewable energy systems or energy efficiency measures in Indian country.

Eligibility for the award is limited to American Indian nations or American Indian energy resource development organizations whose lands on which the project or projects will be located are within the contiguous 48 states.

The system or measures must result in substantial energy savings within 12 to 24 months of award, subject to the availability of renewable energy hardware.

''Applications demonstrating maximum unit installation at lowest cost over the shortest timeframe will be given preference,'' the department reported in its announcement.

''Successful applications under energy efficiency must demonstrate the potential for a 30 percent reduction in energy usage. Applications proposing the use of renewable energy systems for building heating and cooling must meet at least a minimum of 30 percent of the building load. Renewable energy applications proposing less than 1 megawatt of generation will not be considered.''

The application deadline is May 8.

Richard Walker is a correspondent reporting from San Juan Island, Wash. Contact him at rmwalker@rockisland.com.

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