Warm Springs Tribe breaks ground on marijuana farming facility - KPTV - FOX 12

Warm Springs Tribe breaks ground on marijuana farming facility

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It could be the first fully tribally owned and operated marijuana grow operation in the United States.

The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs broke ground on their new marijuana farming facility. It's the result of efforts by the tribal community and Governor Kate Brown.

The reality of marijuana being grown and sold on tribal land is just one step closer for Warm Springs tribal members, who voted back in December to approve the cultivation, production and sale of medical and recreational marijuana.

In April, the Tribe announced the permanent closure of the Warm Springs Forest Productions Industries lumber mill, costing dozens of jobs.

Tribal leaders said over 85 jobs are expected from the cultivation facility along with three retail stores. It's expected to generate about $11 million annually for the Tribe, 10 percent of that money will go to public health.

"This is what we've been looking for, we've been looking for a kick start. We've tried other paths but we haven't been successful, this may be a successful path," said Pi-Ta Pitt, cannabis project coordinator for the Confederate Tribes of Warm Springs.

The Tribe is partnering with Sentinel Strainwise, a company out of Denver, Colorado to provide training for the workers.

The CEO of Sentinel Strainwise said the Warm Springs Tribe is really breaking ground in the cannabis industry to show what other tribes in the nation could do in the future.

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