EBCI (Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians) Enterprises, LLC will receive $64 million for its medical cannabis business for operational costs, including staffing, increased infrastructure at its grow site, and to finish a retail facility. The money, approved by Tribal Council during its regular meeting on Thursday, April 6, will come from the Tribe’s Investment Accounts and General Fund.
Council approved a substitute for Res. No. 496 (2023), which states, “a critical part of the EBCI’s medical cannabis structure are staffing and infrastructure.” The legislation goes on to state, “…the EBCI will see a return on their investment within the first year of retail operations.” This measure is pending ratification from Principal Chief Richard G. Sneed.
Big Cove Rep. Teresa McCoy made the motion to the pass the resolution which did so by a margin of 63-31 (6 absent). The four dissenting votes were from Wolftown Rep. Michael Parker, Painttown Rep. Dike Sneed, Painttown Rep. Michael Stamper, and Yellowhill Rep. David Wolfe. Cherokee Co. – Snowbird Rep. Adam Wachacha was absent.
The original version of Res. No. 496 first came to the Council floor in January when it was tabled due to a lengthy discussion at the time surrounding a memo from the National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC) which prohibits the use of gaming funds for the project. Council approved funding in the amount of $10 million for the operation in December 2022.
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