Navajo Nation Council Summer Session begins with annual horseback and bicycle rides on July 18
July 18, 2016 Professional Journal

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. – Among the 16 proposed bills on the Navajo Nation Council summer session proposed agenda is a referendum for the people to approve or disapprove the Council’s use of $566.5 million from the Permanent Trust Fund principal to support the Transportation Stimulus Plan from the Nation’s Department of Transportation.

Council Delegate Dwight Witherspoon and Raymond Smith are sponsoring Legislation 0157-16, which is the referendum for the $566.5 million from the Permanent Trust Fund principal for the Transportation Stimulus Plan.

The Council convenes its five-day session on Monday at 10 a.m.

Also on the Council’s proposed agenda is two dueling bills involving amendments to the Navajo Nation Land Policy on Acquisition of Land that would streamline the Nation’s purchase of land and also open the door for the Nation to make offers to buy land, sell land and to dispose of land.

The primary difference between the two measures regarding land acquisition is that one creates a commission of Council delegates and executive office political appointees to buy, sell and dispose of land and the other give final approval to buy, sell and dispose of land to the Division of Natural Resources executive director but not before the land department reviews and processes the purchase, selling and disposal of land. The Council’s Resources and Development Committee would also be involved.

Council Delegate Alton Joe Shepherd is sponsoring Legislation 0101-16, which involves the Division of Natural Resources executive director, land department and Resources and Development Committee in land deals.

Council Delegate Leonard Tsosie is sponsoring Legislation 0190-16, which creates a land acquisition commission.

On behalf of the Council, welcomes the public to the Council summer session at the Council chambers.

“On behalf of the 23rd Navajo Nation Council, I invite our Diné Citizens to join us for the summer session as we welcome the horse and bike ride groups, state and federal leadership, and as we honor and recognize several groups for their accomplishments,” Speaker LoRenzo Bates, who represents the chapers of Nenahnezad, Newcomb, San Juan, Tiis Tsoh Sikaad, Tse’Daa’Kaan, and Upper Fruitland, said in a news release.

Bates said prior to the official start of the session, horseback and bicycle riders will gather outside the Council Chamber to recognize and bring awareness to several issues including domestic violence, healthy living, and others.

He explained that the horseback and bicycle rides are held each year prior to the summer session with youth, elders, and many others who travel over the course of several days from each of the Nation’s five agencies to bring awareness to various issues and to honor past leaders.

Bates said this year, Council delegates participating in the horseback and bicycle rides include Walter Phelps, Lee Jack, Sr., Alton Shepherd, and Edmund Yazzie.

He added on opening day, the Birdsprings Veterans Organization will post the colors, the invocation will be provided by Miss Indian New Mexico Megan Badonie, and Roxyanne Harvey and daughters will sing the National Anthem.

Bates said during the week, the Council is scheduled to receive informal reports from Arizona Sen. Carlyle Begay (Dist. 7 – R) on Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. and from U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (N.M. – D) on Wednesday at 9:30 a.m. in the Council Chamber.

Council will also set aside time during the week to recognize several individuals and groups including the Navajo Nation’s Hotshot Fire Crew for their assistance in fighting the recent Cedar Creek wildfire, two recent graduates of the police academy, the Navajo Nation Foster Grandparent Program, and others, he said.

The Office of the Speaker will once again partner with the Office of Broadcast Services to live-stream the Summer Session via the Council’s designated Ustream channel. Please visit and search for “Navajo Nation Council” in the search box to view live proceedings beginning Monday morning.

To view all legislations on the proposed agenda for the 2016 Summer Council Session, please click the following link:

To view the reports we have received as of today, for the first day of the Summer Session, please click the following link:

The proposed agenda is available by clicking this link:


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