Navajo Council calls Day-Long Work Session on Spending American Rescue Plan funds, 10 am, 3.29.21

Greetings Relatives/Frens/Humans,
Once again Prez Nez & VP Lizer think they have the Best Plan to spend the Navajo Nation’s allocation of the 2021 American Rescue Plan, which is the second federal COVID-19 relief aid dollars. And so Nez-Lizer informed the Navajo Council in a March 25 letter to work with their Chief of Staff Paulsen Chaco…SMH Nez & lizer continue to Believe they are the only ones that can have a Plan for the Am Rescue Plan, which was their same Belief with Trump’s CARES aid. And where did that Egotistical Belief of Nez & lizer take the Navajo people? The 110 chapters didn’t have enough time to spend their CARES dollars. Most of the 110 chapters still don’t have Emergency COVID-19 Plans. Nez & lizer’s Division of Community Development is responsible for and gets funding to assist the 110 chapters with community planning and especially Emergency Planning.

But where was Nez, Lizer, Chaco and their Division Directors when COVID-19 hit the Navajo Nation? From the photos, they took of themselves and their Cabinet, they were on the Front Lines Delivering Food INSTEAD of Managing the Executive Branch, which is where a majority of direct services for the Navajo people located. To this day, March 29, I am still WAITING for the NEZ-LIZER 2020 COMPREHENSIVE EMERGENCY COVID-19 RESPONSE PLAN.

I’m also WAITING for the NEZ-LIZER WRITTEN REPORT ON ALL THE COVID-19 RELIEF DONATIONS received by nez & lizer on behalf of the Navajo people. The DONATIONS were not for nez & lizer; the Donations were for the Navajo people. Nez & Lizer had Navajo Nation Justice Department Attorney General McPaul & her staff answering phones to receive FINANCIAL DONATIONS!

To attend the Navajo Council Work Session via Telecommunications, here is the Call-in Number: (669) 900-6833; Meeting ID: 928 871 7160; Passcode: 86515. Please MUTE your phones. Ahe’hee!

The work session may also be Livestreamed at:
VIMEO: www.vimeo.com/navajonationcouncil
YouTube: www.youtube.com/navajonationcouncil
NNC Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/navajonationcouncil/

May Peace Prevail on Mother Earth!

NAABIK’ÍYÁTI’ COMMITTEE OF THE 24th NAVAJO NATION COUNCIL WORK SESSION (VIA TELECOMMUNICATION)
Window Rock, Navajo Nation
Monday, March 29, 2021 – 10:00 AM (DST)
PROPOSED AGENDA
Call-in Number: (669) 900-6833
Meeting ID: 928 871 7160
Passcode: 86515

PRESIDING CHAIR: Honorable Seth Damon, Speaker, 24th Navajo Nation Council

  1. CALL WORK SESSION TO ORDER; ROLL CALL; INVOCATION
  2. RECOGNIZE GUESTS AND VISITING OFFICIALS (2 Minute Limit per Delegate)
  3. WORK SESSION TOPIC(S):
    A. Introduction and Purpose of Work Session resented by Speaker, Seth Damon, 24th Navajo Nation Council.
  4. Presentation by Navajo Nation – Department of Justice, Doreen McPaul, Attorney General on the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
  5. Presentation by Executive Branch Chief, Jonathan Nez, Navajo Nation President.
  6. Presentation by Judicial Branch Chief, JoAnn Jayne, Navajo Nation Chief Justice.
  7. Presentation by Legislative Branch Chief, Seth Damon, Speaker, 24th Navajo Nation Council
  8. Questions and Discussion
  9. Recommendation(s)
  10. CLOSE OF WORK SESSION; ANNOUNCEMENTS; ADJOURNMENT

PRESS RELEASE – Statement from Speaker Damon on Supplemental appropriations and American Rescue Plan
The following is a statement sent via electronic Transmittal on March 26, 2021 by Speaker Seth Damon addressing supplemental appropriations and the American Rescue Plan in response to a letter from the Office of the President and Vice President dated March 25, 2021:

“To the Honorable Jonathan Nez and the Honorable Vice President Myron Lizer:

“First, I wish to extend my gratitude and deepest appreciation, on behalf of the 24th Navajo Nation Council, to the Office of the President and Vice President for continuing to provide leadership for the Navajo People during this coronavirus pandemic. Your admirable service has brought national attention to the issues and challenges facing the Navajo Nation.

“As the Navajo People begin to return to a pattern of life under fewer restrictions, the Navajo Nation government faces the challenge of returning to full operation. What have we learned and how can policy be improved?

“As policymakers, we hope to begin the first step in this reflective and planning discussion process on Monday, at the Naabik’íyáti’ Committee work session for branch chiefs. This will begin the conversations that will lay the foundation for spending American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) relief funds for the benefit of the Navajo People.

“These work sessions provide the most transparent and the most unadulterated presentation of the act of collaboration within the Navajo Nation government.

“It is this same process that will benefit from your positive guidance, whether the Navajo Nation Council decides to approve immediate allocations or to enact program reforms before funding further ARPA projects. Ultimately, initiatives relating to fiscal policy and investments in the health and wellbeing of the Navajo People are for them to decide through the Council, first.

“During this public health crisis, the Navajo Nation Council has worked endlessly to serve the Navajo People through its actions and its oversight hearings.

“Our votes, as leadership, in these appropriations are for the enhancement of basic human services. These immediate needs include proposed appropriations to:

“1. Navajo Nation Veterans Administration. Under guidance from agency commanders and the families of Navajo veterans, the members of the Navajo Nation Council acknowledge that the appropriation of funding to meet the emergency and housing needs of Navajo veterans is among the most basic dignities we can afford to them. The Council seeks continual improvement in this area.

“2. Navajo Nation Criminal Investigations. Monthly, the record shows a deficiency in this program that will be enhanced with targeted supplemental funding approved by the Council. This appropriation will represent the culmination of more than a year of hearings and reports by Executive Branch personnel to the Council membership. Public safety potentially stands to realize crucial improvements in its services under ARPA funds, beginning with Criminal Investigations.

“3. Burial Assistance Funding. Leadership and the public has perceived a need in this area that has been the focus of an ongoing discussion throughout the pandemic. The need persists and we stand ready to present this appropriation at the time the Council approves it.

“As with the process initiated during the CARES Act appropriations, I extend the invitation to you to be an active and frequent participant in the open and public decision-making that is undertaken by the Navajo Nation Council.

“Further, we look forward to receiving further information on the concerns alluded to in your letter and any proposals the Navajo Nation Council may consider as a matter of public record.

“Current and future legislation addressing the aforementioned appropriations are open for public comment and action. Your active solicitation of the Navajo public’s input on these measures is welcomed through the legislative process.

“The Office of the Speaker remains open to any and all collaborative and constructive proposals for the critical needs of the Navajo People.

“Sincerely, Honorable Seth Damon, Speaker, 24th Navajo Nation Council”

But Nez said he will no longer consider the Council’s supplemental appropriations.”

Nez, in a March 25 letter to the Damon, stated, “As we go forward from this point, it is important to recognize that we must carefully use our existing financial resources and optimize its usage in the most productive way possible due to changing economic times of reduced tribal revenues. In fact, we may face severe financial shortfalls in the coming years in government operations because of diminished revenues. To avoid this situation, I will no longer consider requested appropriations until we address larger concerns.”

He added, “The Nation expects considerably more from the ARP than the 2020 CARES allocation. Clearly, the American Rescue Plan requires the immediate attention and planning of Navajo leaders to help our people without needless delays.

“At this moment, Mr. Paulsen Chaco, OPVP chief of staff, is meeting with division directors to develop a comprehensive project list that we can structure deliverance of needed infrastructure projects to the Nation,” Nez said. “We ask that you work with Mr. Chaco to share your concerns. Any question, please direct your written inquiries to Mr. Chaco.”

Damon’s response, on behalf of the Council, was to invite Nez to Monday’s work session.

“As with the process initiated during the CARES Act appropriations, I extend the invitation to you to be an active and frequent participant in the open and public decision-making that is undertaken by the Navajo Nation Council,” he informed Nez. “Further, we look forward to receiving further information on the concerns alluded to in your letter and any proposals the Navajo Nation Council may consider as a matter of public record.

Damon added, “Current and future legislation addressing the aforementioned appropriations are open for public comment and action. Your active solicitation of the Navajo public’s input on these measures is welcomed through the legislative process. The Office of the Speaker remains open to any and all collaborative and constructive proposals for the critical needs of the Navajo people.

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