Paying Our Fair Share

Paying Our Fair Share

You’ve probably heard someone say that Indian tribes pay no taxes. Wrong!

It’s true that reservation lands held in trust by the federal government are exempt from state or local taxes. But that’s not the whole story.

The Coquille Tribe believes in paying its fair share for local government services such as police and fire protection. One way we do that is a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PIlOT) agreement. Basically, the Tribe negotiates a fair price with local authorities, and the subsequent payments take the place of property taxes.

In North Bend, where we operate The Mill Casino-Hotel and RV Park, we’ve made PILOT payments for decades. No other property owner pays as much to North Bend as the Tribe does. In fact, our current payments are nearly five times what North Bend receives from the next largest property owner, Pony Village Mall.

In addition to our North Bend PILOT, we pay the Charleston Fire District to protect our Kilkich Reservation. We also voluntarily contribute hotel room taxes to help support tourism promotion in the Coos Bay area.

And, of course, we pay regular payroll taxes and government fees like any other business.

One more thing: Not all tribal land is exempt from property taxes. Only the reservation lands held in trust by the federal government has the exemption. Other property the Coquille Tribe owns, including some forest, farm and commercial property, are subject to the same state and local taxes as any other real estate.

The Coquille Indian Tribe definitely pays its fair share. We’re proud to help support public services in all the communities where we live and do business.