Chris Aadland covers the Wind River Reservation and tribal affairs for the Star-Tribune as a Report for America corps member. A Minnesota native, he spent the last two years reporting for the Wisconsin State Journal before moving to Wyoming in June 2019.
The competition comes as other initiatives have also been trying to spur economic growth and foster an entrepreneurial mindset on the reservation.
Two inmates at the jail, operated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, have tested positive for COVID-19, marking the first known outbreak of the virus among multiple inmates at a Wyoming Correctional facility.
The employee works at Riverton's Wind River Rehabilitation and Wellness.
Legislation signed by Gov. Mark Gordon earlier this year required the Wyoming Gaming Commission — formerly the Pari-Mutuel Commission — to include a tribal citizen as it expands responsibilities to regulate skill-based games in the state.
The announcement came days after state officials said they identified a coronavirus outbreak at a Washakie County nursing home that has infected nine people.
The Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes have received about $19 million in coronavirus relief money to help the tribes soften the economic fallout from the pandemic.
There have now been 11 coronavirus-related deaths in Wyoming, four of which were announced in the past four days.
Eastern Shoshone and Norther Arapaho leaders voted earlier this month to continue to enforce a stay-at-home order until further notice. They also instituted a 9 p.m. curfew to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
The Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes would be able to apply for state grants in addition to money received from an $8 billion pool the federal government set aside for the country's 574 federally recognized tribes.
The county’s plan comes as some leaders in the county — which has been a hot spot for COVID-19 in the state since it emerged here about two months ago — have clamored for officials to further ease restrictions.