NAVAJO COUNCIL DEBATE OVER APPROPRIATING $550,000 TO CHAPTERS FOR BURIAL COSTS BUT MONEY WOULD GO INTO “GENERAL ACTIVITY ACCOUNT” WHICH IS BASICALLY A DISCRETIONARY FUND OR SLUSH FUND.
DELEGATE JONATHAN HALE IS THE DELEGATE THAT MADE THE AMENDMENT FOR 110 CHAPTERS TO EACH RECEIVE $5,0000 FOR A TOTAL APPROPRIATION OF $550,000.
DELEGATE ALTONG SHEPHERD
Does the Council have to use the 50-50 formula for this $550,000 to each 110 chapters?
THE 50-50 FORMULA IS FOR HOW TRIBAL FUNDS ARE APPROPRIATED TO CHAPTERS AS SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDS. LAW MANDATES THAT 50 PERCENT OF THE FUNDS ARE DIVIDED BY 110 AND 50 PERCENT IS DIVIDED BY THE CHAPTERS’ REGISTERED VOTERS.
ACTING CHIEF LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL MARIANA KAHN
money must be distributyed by 50-50 formula. Case law regarding Appropriations Act mandates that any waiver of Appropriations Act must be taken to people.
If waiver language placed in appropriation then won’t take effect until people vote.
NAVAJO DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE GOMEZ
Chapters should be notified before Council acts on $550,000 supplemental appropriation for Chapters or use 50-50 forumula.
Bigger chapters hoard money with 50-50 formula. This is just $5,000. We also appropriated funds for specific chapters and for specific uses.
DELEGATE LEONARD TSOSIE
Waiver of Appropriations Act is from Navajo Nation Supreme Court and AA is in Budget Instructions Manuel and Council never approved law that mandates Council to BIM.
Waiver is just illogical way for Navajo Supreme Court to explain decision. And current Navajo law does not state that.
We use to be straying away from amendment. any recommendations from attorneys?
NDOJ ATTORNEY GOMEZ
reading 50-50 formula mandates prior notice.
DELEGATE ALTON SHEPHERD
place in Speaker’s account so don’t need 50-50 restraint.
Speaker’s account should reflect that funds are for burial costs and by equal distribution.
DELEGATE WALTER PHELPS
if process easier and funds can be accounted for, then support.
my chapters provide but individual must be voting chapter member and limit is $125.
DELEGATE LORENZO BATES
based on modified amendment and 50-50 formual: Is speaker required to honor 50-50? And is this leaning towards Discretionary Fund for Speaker?
NDOJ ATTORNEY GOMEZ
if allocation is broken down by chapter then require compliance with 50-50 but if entity that has guidelines in place.
even if go into Speaker’s account, it’s still subject to 50-50 formula?! The social services dept has policies but how long will it take for assistance to clear red tape. My chapters have burial assistance policy.
2013-2013 Miss Navajo Nation Natasha Hardy came into Council chamber and introduced herself. She was crowned during Navajo Nation Fair last week in Window Rock, Arz.
VOTE ON DELEGATE JONATHAN HALE’S AMENDMENT FOR 110 CHAPTERS TO EACH RECEIVE $5,000. TOTAL APPROPRIATION IS $550,0000.
12 in favor, 5 opposed
DELEGATE JONATHAN NEZ WAS AMONG 5 THAT OPPOSED APPROPRIATION
* didn’t want to waive laws. Council already waived laws regarding Council approval of prior year audit and use of pesonnel lapse fund.