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Tribe declares financial disaster due to shutdown

By Associated Press
Published On: Oct 16 2013 07:27:59 AM MDT
Updated On: Oct 16 2013 07:28:06 AM MDT
HELENA, Mont. -

The Chippewa Cree Tribe has declared a financial disaster due to the federal government shutdown.
    
Spokesman Wade Colliflower said Tuesday if the budget stalemate in Congress isn't resolved by Thursday, the tribal government will completely shut down.
    
The exception will be the Rocky Boy's reservation's police department and health clinic, which will be fully staffed.
    
Colliflower says senior citizens will receive meal deliveries, propane and firewood as the weather turns colder.
    
But nearly all other tribal offices and services will close after Thursday, with essential workers on call in case of emergencies.
    
Colliflower says the tribe already has cut back hours and furloughed staff with federal money for tribal programs cut off during the shutdown.
    
He says tribal members are holding their breaths in hopes a deal will be reached.