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Tribal council will lead PIA in lieu of administrator


Petersburg Indian Association started their week off without a tribal administrator on staff. Bobbi Scherrer was hired into the position this January and left at her own hand after creating an operational budget and seeing the funds weren’t there for fiscal year 2015 for the organization to employ an administrator.

“I’m very sad to be leaving. It’s not what I thought would happen and certainly not this soon,” Scherrer said. “I knew we weren’t out of the woods yet, but I was hoping when I put together the operational budget to find a little bit different picture than what we did.”

Scherrer and Tribal Council Board President Barry Morrison said in assessing PIA’s needs and priorities for 2015 along with their revenues, the money just wasn’t there. Scherrer said PIA manages properties and those fixed costs left little flexibility for the organization.

“You can only cut certain things when you’re managing properties and that ends up being what we had to cut was people. And mine being the first that had to go.”

Scherrer and Morrison said the budget drafted by Scherrer will provide some guidance

to staff along with the plans already in place for several grants managed by the organization.

Morrison said the seven person board will be filling in the leadership gap for now, though the specifics of that are still being worked out.

“To some extent that’s still being fleshed out because we do have a board that is all volunteer,” Morrison said. “Most of it will be, it’s all done by committee…We all take a part and we all have to take an interest or as much of an interest as our time allows to make sure that it works right.”

Scherrer said her hope is to have a tribal administrator back on staff in 2016.

“PIA is not in danger of closing its doors. We wanted to make sure we live within our means,” she said.

In addition to Morrison, those elected to the board include Barbara King, Brandi Heppea and Rita Byrer. Brenda Louise was elected to the final one-year term in a special election held Feb. 27, though results remain unofficial.


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