We’ve built the largest Native health care system in the U.S. and just opened the largest outpatient facility in Indian country. The investment of $200 million of our own money brings $100 million per year in new federal health funding to the region and enables us to hire an additional 800 health care workers. Besides providing good jobs and life-saving care, our health system takes the pressure off overburdened private and state facilities. Our world-class gaming and entertainment endeavors, coupled with the tribe’s rich history and culture, bring hundreds of thousands of tourists to Oklahoma from across the world. These visitors pump even more new dollars into our state’s economy. During the last fiscal year, our gaming operations sent $18 million in revenue directly to the state, bringing the total of the last eight years to $116 million. And that’s just one tribe. Oklahoma has richly benefited from the gaming revenues of all our tribes. Cherokee Nation is successful because we have the good sense to find and work with great partners. For the past 15 years, we have had a stable and positive partnership with Oklahoma, most notably through a gaming compact that is fair to all.
#CherokeeNation injected nearly $2.2B into the Oklahoma economy last year. Research shows the tribe and its businesses continue to expand their economic footprint through employment, labor income, production of goods and services, and more.— CherokeeNation (@CherokeeNation) December 13, 2019
The details: https://t.co/t3OjV6tvho pic.twitter.com/ISoSNVY7FE
No matter how our impact is measured, it is clear that Cherokee Nation and the other 37 federally recognized Oklahoma tribes remain a consistent force for economic growth. As Chief of the Cherokee Nation, my message to the state of Oklahoma is this: Cherokee Nation is the best friend Oklahoma has ever had. Good friends must show each other respect. Instead of trying to throw out our successful gaming compacts so the state can increase its revenue on the backs of tribes, our state government and the citizens of Oklahoma would be better served by embracing tribes and their successes. Let’s move forward as partners and continue on our path to greater prosperity. Together, our future is bright.
Chuck Hoskin Jr. is the 18th elected Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, the largest Indian tribe in the United States. He is only the second elected Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation from Vinita, the first being Thomas Buffington, who served from 1899-1903. Prior to being elected Principal Chief, Hoskin served as the tribe’s Secretary of State. He also formerly served as a member of the Council of the Cherokee Nation, representing District 11 for six years.