The Squaxin Island Planning Department provides three primary services forthe tribal government – strategic planning, grant writing, and land management.
Strategic planning services are normally performed at the direction of the Tribe’s Executive Director. Such services range from developing detailed, long-range strategic plans to conducting internal process reviews that evaluate the effectiveness of individual tribal programs. Grant writing helps tribal government departments obtain needed third party funds for the enhancement or continuation of critical programs and services. Planners work with departments to develop new programs and then begin the search for appropriate funding sources. Planners also work closely with South Puget Intertribal Planning Agency, a five-tribe planning consortium.
The process of grant writing requires establishing close working relationships with federal, state, local and private funding agencies. Over the past several years, the Planning Department has developed outstanding partnerships with the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services Indian Health Service and the Washington State Department of Transportation.
Land management functions primarily involve processing applications to convert fee land purchased by the Tribe into Trust status held for the Tribe by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Once land is in Trust status, it falls under the legal jurisdiction of the Tribe. The Planning Department also performs several land functions similar to a county Auditor’s Office and is responsible for recording documents that relate to Tribal lands such a leases, mortgages, and easements.