A long road for NGS lease payment
The Navajo Nation Council has up to Dec. 31 to decide whether they want the remaining lease for the embattled Navajo Generating Station to be paid to the Nation over the next 35 years, all at once, or in some other way.
Two years ago the Council approved extending the lease between the Nation and the plant owners — Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District, Tucson Electric Power Company, Nevada Power Company, and the Department of Water and Power City of Los Angeles.
With that agreement came five options on lease payments. Although the NGS owners will no longer operate plant after December 2019, and the Nation continues to look for another buyer, the 35-year lease is still in effect.
Both the Budget and Finance and Naabik’iyati committees decided they like the option of being paid $110 million over the next 35 years with a one-time payment of $18.1 million in 2018.
“If you would take your memory back two years to the extension legislation we dealt with, we talked about the amount of dollars associated with the fact that NGS was closing early,” said Speaker LoRenzo Bates. “This is what we can do in terms of dollars. You, as Council, will have to decide how you want these dollars.”