Economic Resource Council turns to The Union readers for economic development ledes

Never mind that the County agreed to spend more than $600,000 in TOT dollars on a multiyear contract with the Nevada County Economic Resource Council for its economic development expertise, know-how and “Rolodex file.”

Now the organization is reaching out to the community to help it fulfill its mission — in a column in The Union newspaper, no less.

“Email ( or text or call me (530-518-5733) with the name (and ideally provide their contact information) of the individual or business that you believe is a good candidate to relocate to Nevada County. Even better, please make an email introduction!

“Individuals who provide leads for the ERC to follow up with will have their names entered into a raffle with opportunities to win prizes each month, followed by a grand prize drawing at the annual ERC Economic Summit.”


Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

20 thoughts on “Economic Resource Council turns to The Union readers for economic development ledes”

  1. I cannot help but feel that the Nisenan and the NCR represent one path to prosperity.
    What they need is support and investors to help them challenge the Feds and win back their stolen recognition.
    United Auburn Rancheria with its Thunder Valley Indian Casino and many other interests, including Chapa de clinic, here in our county, have contributed millions of dollars to their local community.

    Here the wiki article, scroll down to “Philanthropy”.

    1. Much of Lincoln’s economic development is built around Thunder Valley. We work with them regularly in our publishing business over in Placer County. There are many alternatives in our community with Native American groups that could be explored without the footprint of a casino. But I have never heard of the ERC reaching out to the Nevada City Rancheria. SYRCL has done so, helping to create an informative sign about the history of the Nisenan for visitors to the South Yuba River near the Hwy. 20 bridge — a form of economic development. I wrote about it this weekend. It will be erected soon.

      1. Jeff,
        You are right about different streams of incomes available to tribes. But the question of gaming is one over which the tribe may not have any control because of the Federal rules. Remember, gaming was never meant solely to benefit Indian people. Many non-Indians also have their fingers in the pie.
        Some Casinos are awful, monstrous, charmless, blights but they fill up with gamblers and folks seeking entertainment.
        I don’t love them because I have seen too many generic, ugly ones and they are full of smoke.
        I had thought Graton Rancheria was going smoke-free, but apparently that didn’t happen.
        Maybe some tribe will be brave (no pun) enough to build a classy, smoke free facility.
        Some of the better ones I have seen are in restored properties like old hotels, even an old lumber mill in Coos Bay was restored by the Coquille tribe who are generoius with the people in their lands.

        The main thing is to form a relationship with the tribe early on and begin to come to mutual agreements.
        It is always better that way, all the way around.
        Although I have always been suspicious of this path to economic health for Indian people I have also see the opportunities it provides to communities, and I do believe that if the opportunity were to fall upon Nevada County, we could do it better than anybody, with our own, very creative, local talent pool.

  2. Time for Nevada County to request and publish measurable results from the Economic Resource Council’s efforts. How many businesses have relocated or grown in Nevada County through direct support and effort of the ERC?

  3. You will never read any objective reporting in The Union on the ERC, because the newspaper is a paid subcontractor. It is a huge conflict of interest. And the ERC column is behind a paywall.

  4. Is it that the only way for the survival of Native Americans is to depend on pot or gambling? Certain tribes near the coast get unregulated access to millions of pounds of salmon, but it seems that that isn’t enough, so even they are turning to casino/pot. Saw a sticker on a lunchbox carried on a construction site in Arizona “I’m not a casino Indian”. Seems there are at least a few native Americans out there who think differently-

  5. I agree Chip, but it’s what the Feds threw down for NDNs, however, just some of them, not all.
    The result?
    Thunder Valley NDNs are affluent and the Nisenan are destitute.
    Think of it this way, Uncle Sam has given NDNs their very own 1%.
    Seriously, how much do you think a fat cat casino NDN cares about our tribe?
    The Aussies have an expression , “Bugger you Bill, I’m okay.”

    So the casino concept is a great way to make certain there would be no unity between the tribes, and it’s working on many levels, as you can imagine having wealthy cousins made rich on casino dollars, while you are left out in the cold.
    BTW, revenue sharing by those big tribes to smaller ones is a joke too, just so you know.

    For millennia Native people have used cannabis in one form or another for healing.
    It took the whites to turn it into a drug.
    Indian children did not use it recreationally.
    Nisenan people had clean air, water and food sources.
    But some whites just cannot leave a good thing alone can they?
    They had to dig deep and foul the lands.
    This pollution pit used to be a paradise, but that is gone forever.
    So is the gold.
    This county is poor and struggling with no end in sight, so it seems it was all for nothing.
    At least, on that count, the Nisenan have a clean conscience and bear no blame.
    Naturally, they would like to help themselves and the rest of the community out of poverty.
    Please support your local tribe and remember, the word is Nisenan, accept no substitutes.

    1. Lots of hogwash here Judith. You are purposefully weaving the words Nisenan and natives to confuse your audience. Yes, cannabis was available to a very few “natives” but it was not available to the Nisenan so it was pretty easy to keep it from their children. Tobacco introduced to the non-indigenous by native Americans has caused more death and grief than all the cannabis on earth. It’s a two way street when claiming the moral high ground when it comes to use of mind altering substances.

      1. Not really Chip.
        I’m just telling you how it is.
        I don’t really care one way or the other about what Nevada County does.
        I may reside here but my heart lies north in my own hometown.
        But as far as a casino goes, this community is entitled to have a healthy discussion about it if it should come up when the Nisenan regain their federal recognition.
        The way it was going you folks were probably headed for one run by out-of-county interests, so the money would not have stayed in your county.

      2. Jon,

        You have a lot to learn.
        There was nothing wrong with the organic tobaccos Indian cultures grew and smoked, but the white man had to add chemicals and carcinogens to them in order to addict the population to their heavily marketed product, even targeting their own children, and then lied to the U.S. Senate about it.

        I claim no moral high ground just because I have Indian heritage, I am also white.
        And don’t worry, Nevada County may gain a recognized tribe one day, but if the Nisenan were to try and game here, the more powerful neighboring tribes would probably never allow it.
        So, rest easy, your county is pretty safe from a casino and all that money.

  6. Have I stooped to verbal vulgarity with you Chip?
    Settle down lad and read on.

    What I am doing here is being discreet for the sake of local good old boys who were taken in by the Tsi Akim Corporation.

    These folks, in their haste to partner with the corporation and make big money, didn’t fact check the Tsi Akim Corp. or they would have known they were courting disaster.

    I absolutely cannot find any way to exclude the possibility that Don Ryberg intended to use your local GOB to build a casino to benefit the Mountain Maidu of Plumas County and not Nevada County citizens or, of course, the Nisenan of the Nevada City Rancheria. This looks like a good old-fashioned raiding party to me.

    Certain tribes raiding and plundering weaker ones is historical fact, and with the gaming industry forced onto NDNs it has only gotten worse across the country. I know because my great-great grandmother was a Pit River slave to the Mountain Maidu.

    You remember when Auburn United Rancheria (rich Thunder Valley NDNs) built their Chapa-de clinic in Grass Valley, there was a huge backlash from locals thinking it was going to be a casino.

    But it was just those rich Auburn NDNs diversifying their portfolio. Many powerful gaming tribes enter into ancillary businesses like gas stations, mini marts and clinics out of financial necessity.

    I recall Mayor Stevens questioning me about why Chapa-de wanted “so much land” on that parcel. I had to laugh over that because that little spot is not large enough for a casino site and GV roads are to small to accommodate the busloads of gamblers that would be arriving from the Sacramento airport.

    But there are suitable sites elsewhere in the county.

    I tried taking this matter before our officials the proper way a few years ago, but a former NC Mayor requested that I not reveal the whole casino scheme to the public in order to save GOB faces.

    I agreed to remain discreet, but that’s when I understood that although I have lived and paid taxes here for twenty years, this just ain’t my town. As Dominic Dunne phrased it, “Another country, not my own”.

    Chipper, go on the Tsi Akim website, write down the name of each of their board members and then go demand answers from them.

    BTW, I intend to file for a Grand Jury investigation into this matter
    Then all of our questions may be answered.

  7. Not settled lol- Judy you speak out of both sides of your mouth – first its pisse3d at non recognition, then you go and blame the “white man” for your own failings. Go figure that your so upset, you don’t know who to blame. These gambling halls all are run by Vegas concerns, not the tribes themselves, it’s a circular firing squad and the tribes sign on for it.
    “It took the whites to turn it into a drug.
    Indian children did not use it recreationally.
    Nisenan people had clean air, water and food sources.
    But some whites just cannot leave a good thing alone can they?
    They had to dig deep and foul the lands.
    This pollution pit used to be a paradise, but that is gone forever.
    So is the gold.
    This county is poor and struggling with no end in sight, so it seems it was all for nothing.
    At least, on that count, the Nisenan have a clean conscience and bear no blame.
    Naturally, they would like to help themselves and the rest of the community out of poverty.”

    Bottom line : gambling loses will pay for tribes future- sounds like a win win. Or maybe it’s some form of revenge.

  8. Judith Hogwash Part Two- “There was nothing wrong with the organic tobaccos Indian cultures grew and smoked, but the white man had to add chemicals and carcinogens to them.” Nicotine is one of the most potent carcinogens known to man. It is one of the primary chemicals used to induce cancerous tumors in lab animals. Tobacco (organic or otherwise) contains at least 70 carcinogens. You have so lost any credibility with me and it makes me sick. I am close friends with both Richard Johnson and Shelly Covert. To have the Nisenan message filtered through you does everyone a disservice.
    BTW, what did my comment have to do with a casino?

    1. As I stated Chip, I am white as well, 50% British Isle.
      You sound upset about the truths I speak about the gold rush.
      I am sorry you and Jon don’t get it, but you are not alone, according to Wikipedia the U.S. ranks ninth in IQ scores worldwide.
      That’s well below Japan and China, even Estonia.
      You two are living examples of the galloping dumbing-down taking place in our country.
      Crack a book, whydoncha.

      1. “Have I stooped to verbal vulgarity with you Chip?” well boy howdy I’m just to friggin ignorant to get your high brow shit- excuse me all over myself.
        But now I get it, I’ve asked what you want half a dozen times here in this blog, and you don’t ever answer. Now I see that you want——a gambling hall just like all the other Indian tribes that want to make a buck off the white mans loses. Pretty simple really. Revenge of some kind? Of course it is! But since your 50% UK and 50% Indian I have to ask how that Brexit thing is going for you,? As to your future, and the future of other tribes with Trump as president, it happens he likes Casino’s too. Your made for each other.

  9. No Chip, Nevada County has said “no” to a casino and I am good with that.
    I am an enrolled member of a gaming tribe and I have never set foot in the Pit River casino.
    What revenue sharing I have received from that venture I have always donated to local charities.
    I don’t take money for selling out my culture.

    The thing is, Federal recognition comes with other benefits like grants for housing, education, community building and cultural preservation.
    The unrecognized Nisenan have already garnered a 40K educational grant that went to the Doris Foley library to improve its collections.
    They could do more if they could tap in to the many Federal contracts available to recognized tribes.

    You have nailed one serious problem though.
    The Feds won’t allow recognized tribes to take gaming off the table, even if they want to.
    That makes it hard for tribes to gain the confidence of their communities who fear gaming.
    Trust me, Nevada County will never have a casino, but folks are still scared of the idea.
    As I explained before the more powerful neighboring tribes who have been accruing gaming revenue for a decade or two, would have their attorneys block every effort by this county to compete with them.

    The thing that puzzles me is the massive amount of support that went to the Tsi Akim Corp. of Plumas County, who managed to convince some foolish locals to support their scheme and give them land, money, power and hand over the entrance to our city.

    Where were you then, Chip?

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