By News-Register staff • 

Two newcomers join Grand Ronde Tribal Council

GRAND RONDE  Newcomers Michael Langley and Lisa Leno, in addition to incumbent Chris Mercier, were elected to the Grand Ronde Tribal Council Saturday.

Langley led the way with 708 votes or 18.8 percent, followed by Mercier, 695 or 18.4 percent; Leno, 648 or 17.2 percent; Tonya Gleason-Shepek, 613 or 16.2 percent; David Lewis, 533 or 14.1 percent; Mark Mercier, 525 or 13.9 percent, and Angela Schlappie, 52 or 1.4 percent. Gleason-Shepek was also seeking re-election.

Schlappie pulled out of the race in late July, but remained on the ballot.

Langley is the first candidate to ever receive more than 700 votes, according to the tribal newspaper, Smoke Signals.

There were a series of advisory votes on the ballot for tribal members living on the reservation, residing elsewhere in the U.S. or making their homes abroad to consider.

They were asked whether the tribe should begin manufacturing and marketing marijuana now that it is legal in Oregon.

Members voted 818-445 in favor of medical marijuana, 632-601 against recreational pot and 761-467 in favor of industrial hemp.

They voted, 792-408, in favor of recommending the tribe consider investing in elder market-rate units in tribal housing.

Another advisory vote asked if constitutional enrollment requirements should be amended related to three possibilities:

* Remove the requirement that the applicant be born to a parent who was a tribal member at the time of the applicant’s birth: 683 no, 541 yes.

* Remove the requirement that the applicant be born to a parent who was a Tribal member at the time the application is filed, if still living: 705 no, 493 yes.

* Replace the requirement that an applicant have 1/16th Grand Ronde blood as defined as all Indian blood derived from an ancestor on the restoration roll with the pre-1999 amendment requirement that an applicant have 1/16th Indian blood and descend from a member of the Tribe: 654 no, 574 yes. 



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