Southern Ute Tribal Seal

News and Announcements

For complete Southern Ute Tribe news and event coverage, visit the Southern Ute Drum website.

Just Move It! July 21st

Just Move It

Community & Home Health Services Closed – July 4th

community health closure flyer

Southern Ute Health Center Closure – July 4, 2018

Ms. Pearl Casias exits retirement to return to Southern Ute Tribal Council


Christine Sage, Chairman – 970.563.0100

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 18, 2018 – 09:15 A.M.

Ms. Pearl Casias exits retirement to return to Southern Ute Tribal Council

Pearl Casias - photo McKayla Lee | Southern Ute Drum

Pearl Casias – photo McKayla Lee | Southern Ute Drum

Southern Ute Reservation – Ms. Pearl Casias was confirmed by the Southern Ute Election Board as the candidate with the highest amount of votes and the newest member of the Southern Ute Indian Tribal Council. Retired Council Member and first female Chairman of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, Casias was sworn into office this morning for her fourth term on Tribal Council.

“I am excited to continue to serve the tribal membership as well as looking forward to sharing my leadership experience and knowledge with the current Tribal Council,” affirmed Ms. Casias.

Council Member Casias has previously served on Council for 10 years. While on Council, she helped develop and implemented the Tribe’s Financial Plan, oversaw the creation of the Southern Ute Growth Fund and the in-house tribal attorney department. She also served as the Chief Tribal Judge for 12 years.

“I am looking forward to working with Ms. Casias. Her previous leadership will be invaluable,” stated Chairman Christine Sage.


Uto-Aztecan Shoshonean-Numic Reunion July 23-25


July 4, 2018 Southern Ute Health Center Closure

Find out the status of your new Medicare card

You may have heard that we started mailing new Medicare cards to everyone with Medicare. Hang tight — mailing takes some time across the country, and you might get your card at a different time than friends or neighbors in your state. In the meantime, keep using your current Medicare card until your new one arrives.

We’ve got 3 ways for you to find out when you should expect your new Medicare card in the mail:

  • Check out the map on Keep coming back to check the status of card mailings in your state. Once card mailings begin in your state, it’ll take at least a month to finish.
  • Keep an eye on your email. We’ll send you an email update when new Medicare cards start mailing in your state.
  • Log in to your account to see if your new card has mailed. Don’t have an account yet? Sign up now at —  it’s a free, secure, and easy way to access all your Medicare information in one place.

Want to learn more about your new Medicare card? Here are 10 things you should know. Read up so you’re ready before your new card arrives!


The Medicare Team

Montezuma Creek Incident Update

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 06, 2018 at 9:20 a.m.
For more information, please contact:
Steve Orr at 720.339.4213,
Jim Mackensen at 503.701.1437,
Christine Sage, Chairman, at 970.563.2313,

Montezuma Creek Incident Update

A lightning storm on June 3, 2018 started a series of fires on the Southern Ute Indian Reservation. On the afternoon of June 4, firefighters from multiple agencies responded to reports of smoke and found multiple fires in the southeast corner of the reservation. At 18:00 the Durango Interagency Incident Management Team assumed management of the fires, which they are calling the Montezuma Creek Incident.

As of 0800 on June 6, 2018 the largest of the fires, the Montezuma Creek Fire, was 20% contained at 8 acres. The fire is located on a very steep slope and a Type 1 hotshot crew has been ordered to assist the other crews working on the fire. The only other sizeable fire is called the Kerns Canyon Fire and is currently 2 acres and 75% contained. It is expected to be fully contained today.

A total of 10 other small fires were located and are all 100% contained at less than 1/10 acre each. There were no accidents or injuries reported yesterday. A total of 140 people will be assigned to the incident today, including 1 hotshot crew, 3 hand crews, 8 engines, 2 water tenders, and 1 bulldozer. Today crews will focus on constructing line and cooling any hot spots on the two remaining fires.

Continued warm and dry conditions are forecasted across the region. Stage 2 fire restrictions remain in place for most of southwest Colorado. Local residents are encouraged to prepare their homes and properties for wildfire and be registered with their county’s emergency notification system.

Montezuma Creek Fire Incident breaks out on the Southern Ute Reservation


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 05, 2018 at 10:05 a.m.
For more information please contact:
Steve Orr at 720.339.4213,
Jim Mackensen at 530.701.1437,
Christine Sage, Chairman, at 970.563.2313,

Montezuma Creek Fire Incident breaks out on the Southern Ute Reservation

Firefighters responded to several reports of smoke in the southeast corner of the Southern Ute Reservation on the afternoon of June 4, 2018. Four fires were located and resources attacking the fires included hand crews, engines, a heavy air tanker, a single engine air tanker (SEAT) and a Type 3 helicopter. The aircraft focused on the largest fire, called the Montezuma Creek Fire, due to the steep and rugged terrain. Hand crews and engines worked on the three smaller fires and were able to make good progress. The Durango Interagency Type 3 Incident Management Team mobilized at 18:00 to manage the fires, setting up an incident command post and base camp near the fires. According to Incident Commander Rich Gustafson, “Our focus is on containing the existing fires and responding rapidly to new fires.

As of 0600 on June 5, 102 personnel were assigned to the fires, including two engines, three hand crews, one dozer and one Type 3 helicopter. The three smaller fires are less than one acre and are named the Kerns, Madrid, and Round Meadow Fires. The Montezuma Creek fire is estimated at 5-10 acres.

Firefighters will focus on constructing containment lines and suppressing any hot spots. On June 3rd, a lightning storm moved through the area with an estimated 200 lightning strikes hitting the east side of the reservation. With forecasted warm and dry weather combined with critically dry fuel moistures, a reserve force of firefighters will be available for any new fire starts located.


Southern Ute Reservation enters Stage II Fire Restrictions – Effective June 1, 2018

NEWS RELEASE: Southern Ute Reservation enters Stage II Fire Restrictions – Effective June 1, 2018

Due to the current dry fuel conditions and the occurrence of recent wildland fires, Stage II fire restrictions have been implemented for all trust lands throughout the Southern Ute Indian Reservation. Everyone on reservation land is asked to be very cautious and use common sense with fire this time of year.

Stage II Fire Restrictions prohibits acts for the general public, commercial operators and industrial oil and gas operators performing work on the Southern Ute Reservation.

The following acts are prohibited for the general public on reservation lands:

OPEN BURNING. Burning of trash and/or yard waste is prohibited.

AGRICULTURAL BURNING: Burning of crop land, fields, rangeland, debris burning, slash piles, prescribed burning and weed burning are prohibited.

CAMP FIRES: Building, maintaining or using a warming fire or campfire outside of officially designated or developed camp sites is prohibited. Charcoal broilers and wood and coal stoves used outside of dwellings are classified as campfires and prohibited. Fires for ceremonial sweats are allowed upon notification of the local fire authority and/or BIA Fire office and approval from them.

FIREWORKS: Possession, discharging or use of any type or fireworks is prohibited.

SMOKING: Smoking is restricted to designated areas, within structures or within vehicles equipped with ashtrays.

OPERATING EQUIPMENT: Operating or using any internal combustion engine (chainsaws, generators, etc) without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order.

Commercial and Industrial restrictions are attached or can be obtained from the BIA Fire Office at 575 County Road 517 or by calling (970) 563-4571.

Anyone violating the provisions of this fire ban may be subject to prosecution outlined in the Southern Ute Indian Criminal Code.

The Restrictions will become effective at 6:00 AM, June 1, 2018 and will remain until conditions improve.

Rich Gustafson, Fire Management Officer
Southern Ute Agency, BIA

2018 Southern Ute Agency Fire Restrictions

Blood Drive June 26-27

Fire Restrictions – 9 Pages

Tribal Housing Now Accepting Applications

Please read the flyer below for more information on the new Tribal Housing Townhomes for rent.

New Cedar Point Townhomes For Rent

Town Homes Available for Rental this Summer – Cedar Point

Attention Agricultural Land Managers

Attention Agricultural Land Managers:

The Water Quality Program for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe is now accepting applications for use of gated pipe acquired by the Tribe’s Cost-Share Program.  The Cost-Share Program is aimed at land managers within the exterior boundaries of the Southern Ute Indian Reservation on the Animas, Florida and Pine watersheds who are interested in implementing Best Management Practices (BMPs) for more efficient irrigation and/or riparian protection/improvements.  Specifically, the Cost-Share Program has acquired approximately 560 linear feet of 8-inch diameter gated pipe.  The pipe was purchased in 2010, but has not been used.  The Cost-Share Program makes no warranty of the quality or condition of the pipe.  The selected Cost-Share participant would be expected to pick up, haul, and install the pipe without assistance from the Cost-Share Program prior to the onset of the 2018 irrigation season.  The Cost-Share Program would retain ownership of the pipe, and the selected applicant would be expected to use the equipment for a period of five years.  After five years the participant would become the owner of the equipment.  These details would be outlined in a legal contract the participant would be expected to sign. Preference will be given to applicants that will use the pipe to replace less efficient flood irrigation and/or replace existing gate pipe that was installed for that purpose.  Please contact project coordinator Tim Funk at 970-563-2272 or if you would like an application.  Applications are due by 5:00 PM on March 23, 2018.