Reservation Fireworks staff add finishing touches to their trailer.
By ROSELYNN YAZZIE
FORT HALL — Local firework business are anticipating sales to increase this year, since most annual firework shows have been cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
There are several businesses located around the reservation, with many of them set up north of the Trading Post.
The businesses had to abide by a social distance safety plan in order to operate.
Interim Fire Chief & EMS Director Eric King said hand washing and masks are encouraged, along with keeping distance between patrons.
King said it’s important to use common sense when it comes to firework safety at home. He said to be aware of what you buy; be mindful of where you light fireworks, preferably in a place where the fire potential is low to none; keep a bucket of water or fire extinguisher close by; fireworks have been allowed to be let off at the Festival Grounds; use the fireworks as they are intended.
King wants people to be careful and said they anticipate a higher call volume.
Powwow Fireworks owner Karri Deschine has seen the volume of customers increase since opening on June 2, because of the rain. Since there is no big show she said people are creating their own shows in their back yard.
Powwow Fireworks offers a hand wash station, hand sanitizer, masks, gloves, and stays on top of sanitizing their shopping baskets for customers. She also encourages all her employees to wear masks. She normally has 7 to 8 employees, but this year increased the staff to16.
Powwow Fireworks staff wearing masks.
Powwow Fireworks hours of operation are 7:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. this week and the week of Fourth of July they will be open from 7 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Her business has been going strong for 25 years. She started to sell fireworks to offer a competitive price for customers. She also loves the joy it brings to people. They offer a large variety of merchandise with something for every budget.
Over the years she’s contributed to many causes in the community, most recently it was for the Festival royalty, but she’s also interested in doing something to help with education. Community is important to her and she’s done her best to hire locally, many of her employees are family of previous employees.
Reservation Fireworks, owned by the Lamere family has been in operation for 18 years. They’re opening a little earlier this year to meet the demand.
Owner Debbie Lamere said besides wearing masks and gloves to be safe they will also be trying to install plexiglass at their stand to protect themselves and the customers. They will also be marking off the area to ensure social distance is abided by.
Lamere said selling fireworks is a way for their family to work together.
Reservation Fireworks will open on Friday, June 19 with hours from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and the Fourth of July week they will be open from 8 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Dr. Brent Cody
Submitted by YVETTE TUELL
Office of Public Affairs
FORT HALL — The Fort Hall Business Council recently hired Dr. Brent Cody, a professional consultant with Momentum Civil and Environmental Engineering, to develop a sustainable financial allocation model and plan for the Coronavirus Relief funding received by the Tribes.
He will conduct a planning process to identify the vision/mission, measurable goals and objectives, and actionable strategies; identify Tribal needs by working with tribal programs, tribal entities, and community; identify allowable projects per federal CFR allowable costs and expenditures; develop project proposals as project needs are identified, review those proposals, and assist with oversight and implementation of funds; develop a schedule indicating deadlines for outreach, research, plan development, final approval of plan, and help with the implementation of the plan. The effort is on the fast track and Dr. Cody has until December 30, 2020 to complete his work.
The Fort Hall Business Council has identified their priorities, but it is vital for the community to offer input in this effort. In the next few weeks, tribal members will be asked to identify suggestions in surveys and comments. To start this community effort, a survey will be available at the polling locations on Friday to tribal members.
Fort Hall Business Council members said it is an opportunity to do needed things to help our people fight against the virus and we can do a lot with this funding.
The Business Council recognized the need to bring on additional assistance to focus only on the coordinating of tribal programs, community input and with leadership to use this funding efficiently and effectively.
Tribal ordinances and procurement policies were followed. A Request for Proposals was released to eligible firms who may be interested in submitting a bid, including several tribal member firms. No tribal member firms offered a bid, and some indicated they were not interested in the proposal. Momentum Engineering bid and no other Tribal bids were received. Due to the short timeframe with this CRF funding availability and based on Momentum Engineering’s prior work experience with multiple Shoshone-Bannock Tribal departments and other Tribal work, the Business Council accepted the bid.