President Buu Nygren signs legislation worth $560,000 for Delegate Vince James' chapter regions

President Buu Nygren signs legislation worth $560,000 for Delegate Vince James' chapter regions

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — President Buu Nygren and his administration wasted no effort. They invited council delegates to the Navajo Nation Office of the President and participated in signing ceremonies.

One of those legislations President Nygren signed was for Navajo Nation Council Delegate Vince R. James, who represents Jeddito, Cornfields, Ganado, Kinlichee, and Steamboat.

The President approved the Navajo Nation Fiscal Recovery Fund Delegate Regional Project Plan for $560,000.

Through resolution No. CJN-29-22, the Naabik’íyáti’ Committee and Navajo Nation Council allocated more than $1 billion of the Navajo Nation Fiscal Recovery Funds, or NNFRF, for chapter and other projects on the Navajo Nation.

The NNFRF will fund public safety emergency communications, E-911, rural addressing, water, broadband, electricity, housing, bathroom additions, and other projects.

The NNFRF was signed into law in July 2022. The Navajo Nation approved total funding for the NNFRF Chapter and Chapter Projects Expenditure Plan from the Navajo Nation Fiscal Recovery Fund for $211,256,148.

“My Administration supports the plans of these Chapters who have worked very hard to put together their Regional Plans and is working very closely with the Fiscal Recovery Fund Office to ensure that these funds are put to use,” said President Nygren.

The President added that if chapters ran into complications while expanding their fiscal recovery funds, or FRF, they were encouraged to contact his office.

Delegate James said Jeddito Chapter was not certified, which could complicate allocating funding for them.

“Of the five chapters I have, four are certified,” Delegate James told the President. “ We’ll need your assistance to push those sub-recipient agreements forward.”

James asked President Nygren if Steamboat Chapter, a certified chapter, could receive the funding for Jeddito, which they’ll then assist them in moving forward with their projects.

The Navajo Division of Community Development identified 45 chapters were certified, and 65 were not certified.

Certified chapters can provide business site leases, and home site leases, streamline expenditure processes, as well as go into contract, into sub-contract agreements with the Navajo Nation.

The Local Governance Act of 1998 would allow Jeddito Chapter to exercise local governance by utilizing the Five Management System Policies and Procedures.

The purpose of the LGA is to recognize governance at the local level. Through its adoption, the Council delegates to Chapters governmental authority concerning local matters consistent with Navajo law, including custom and tradition.

Enactment of the LGA allows chapters to make decisions over local matters. This authority, in the long run, will improve community decision-making, allow communities to excel and flourish, and enable Navajo leaders to improve the strength and sovereignty of the Navajo Nation.

President Nygren told Delegate James he’d follow up on his inquiry; adding the non-certified chapters could also experience complications.

“We're going to have that issue for the other sixty-five chapters,” the President said. “I'm going to get on top of this. As I mentioned earlier, June 30 will come around very soon. And the non-certified chapters, we must ensure we help them.”

Kinlichee Chapter, according to the resolution, is requesting $420,000 to construct a septic and sewage infrastructure and $100,000 for a fabricated warehouse, which will have two bays that will house heavy equipment and storage for PPE and COVID-19-related materials.

Cornfields Chapter was requesting $40,000 and using the funds to pay hazard pay for chapter employees responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.