Nation receives national award for job creation

The Osage Nation received an award from the U.S. Department of Labor on Oct. 30 in recognition of its outstanding efforts in job training and job creation through its 477 program.

The program is administered by the Osage Nation Education Department with direction from the chief’s office and the ON Human Resources department.

The award was presented at the 102-477 Public Law Conference Banquet held at the Hard Rock Casino in Tulsa Oct. 28-31. Education Department Director Ida Doyle accepted the award on behalf of the Osage Nation, according to a prepared release. She acknowledged those present who had worked on the project by asking them to stand, including: H.R. Director Delary Walters, H.R. Compensation Specialist Jana Scimeca and Chief Red Eagle’s pipeline consultant Rod Hartness.

Doyle and Scimeca organized efforts to train workers for the Flanagan South pipeline project being constructed throughout Osage County. Hartness was credited for bringing four unions together to work on the project with the Nation, which according to Scimeca had never happened before.

Scimeca said in the release that the unions helped by opening up union membership opportunities, providing trainers at their own expense, and providing resources.

Through the training program, 480 workers were trained in over 80 sessions, according to the release.

The economic impact on Pawhuska includes sales tax increasing by 12 percent and unemployment in Osage County has dropped two percent, according to the release.

Public Law 102-477 is the Indian Employment, Training, and Related Services Demonstration Act of 1992, as amended by Public Law 106-568, the Omnibus Indian Advancement Act of 2000.

Public Law 102-477 is unique among Federal legislation, in that it allows Federally-recognized Tribes and Alaska Native entities to combine formula-funded Federal grants funds, which are employment and training-related into a single plan with a single budget and a single reporting system, according to the release.