PRIVATE SECTOR GROUP MOVES FORWARD IN TAR CREEK PURCHASE PROCESS

CHEROKEE INVESTMENT PARTNERS WILL SOON BEGIN ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS

Tulsa, OK - Today U.S. Senator James M. Inhofe (R-Okla) announced that Cherokee Investment Partners of Raleigh, North Carolina will soon begin accepting applications for the sale of residences in the Tar Creek area. Since their visit earlier this year and after further investigation, representatives of Cherokee Investment Partners have announced their high level of interest in Tar Creek and will now take the next step of moving forward with an application process. This application process will help assess interest levels within the community regarding individual homeowners who may desire to sell their property. "This is a private sector alternative to a taxpayer funded buyout of the area," said Inhofe. "Cherokee Investment Partners is an extremely strong and well funded company with vast experience in purchasing Superfund and brownfield properties, so if someone wants to sell their home there is a market. "This will all be done through the private sector without the taxpayer footing the bill. The Governor has been an excellent partner and together we will cleanup the Tar Creek area as we continue to work in a cooperative effort with, ODEQ, The University of Oklahoma, The Quapaw Indian Tribe, and other federal, state and local entities." "I accompanied Senator Inhofe in December when the Cherokee Partnership visited the Tar Creek area," said Senator Rick Littlefield (D-Grove). "This is a creative and entirely private sector alternative to a taxpayer government funded buyout. Not only does this private sector solution protect the towns tax base and it's school funding, but it does not use any of our tax dollars in the process." At the request of Senator Inhofe representatives from Cherokee Investment Partners toured the Tar Creek area and attended a town hall meeting in Miami, Oklahoma on December 20, 2003. Cherokee Investment Partners has been in the business of acquiring environmentally impaired assets for over 14 years and has approximately $1 billion in assets. Currently Cherokee Properties has working projects in over 300 locations worldwide. ###