Navajo Council’s Naabik’iyati Committee has finished listening to Report on Education and now listening to Report from Navajo Election Office Director Wauneka. It is now 3:09 pm
COMMITTEE CHAIRPERSON PRO TEM LORENZO BATES
This report concerns all “puzzles” coming together and Navajo Nation Supreme Court’s ruling on how process would proceed. And there are two pieces of legislation regarding this and one is funding and other is how special election proceed.
Inauguration on Jan. 13, 2015, will take place but without president-elect. There are a couple of memos that were provided to you.
NAVAJO ELECTION OFFICE DIRECTOR EDISON WAUNEKA
we held Nov. 4 election for council, board of education, election board of supervisors, kayenta township. on that same day, Nov. 4, Navajo Supreme Court issued written decision that ordered NEA to remove Deschene’s name and reprint ballots and hold special election in 60 days from Nov. 4, which we did. If no election complaint, then would have had special election on Dec. 23. Absentee from NOv. 19 to Dec. 19. if we printed ballots, costs $90,000, and if Russell Begaye disqualified then all those ballots wasted. and can’t have election if complaint filed so rescheduled election. now I’m being told I didn’t comply with court order and so we filed motion to extend 60 day deadline and Supreme Court granted and they said conduct no late than Jan. 31, 2015, and without unnecessary delay. But we have no money to hold special election.
all delegate position in place except for Nelson Begay versus Zane James, and the winner will represent five communities. after election concluded and within ten days, anyone can file grievance. if not then they can take oath on Jan. 13, 2015. Benjamin Bennett versus Genevieve Jackson.
in order for us to have special presidential election, election office needs $317,000. there is no way for election office to print ballot until election office has purchase order for printer. and that is what the printer informed the election office.
CHIEF LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL LEVON HENRY
you all should have my MEMO dated today regarding 2014 presidential election. there was question earlier from Delegate Loranzo Curley regarding succession issue. in unique situation, as speaker pro tem Bates mentioned, there are two memos. one from me and the other from Navajo department of justice. in most instances the NDOJ and I would meet for consensus on advice to clients. But this did not happen.
In summarizing the Navajo Department of Justice https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7xhIWpNuJXibzhBamNoYUx4NkxYeG4yeVo1eXBKWjQzb1gw/view?usp=sharing, it relies on provision in election code, section 11NNC6B, and they say that in taking oath from president and vice president, and terms expire on their insallation of office. NDOJ says current term of president and vice president expires when special election held. my office relies on other sections of code and other code, and we determined that on Jan. 13, 2015, at noon, the current president and vice president terms end and so president and vice president at noon. then rely on laws regarding vacancy in office of president and vice president which mandates Council to select from its member an interim president. like i said we are in unique position because of challenges to election. NDOJ relies on specific code and Title 2, which are Title 11 and Title 2, so we interpreting laws as “safety net.”
Waunekea said late January or early february for special electoin and then ten days for certification and then don’t know how long inaugurate president and vice president but estimating late February.