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Updated Apr 17, 2013 - 12:24 pm

Navajo leader urges approval of Arizona coal plant lease

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Navajo President Ben Shelly is urging tribal lawmakers
to approve a lease extension for a coal-fired power plant on the reservation.

The current lease for the Navajo Generating Station in Page provides the tribe
with about $3 million a year. That amount would increase to $43 million a year,
starting in 2019, if the Tribal Council approves an extension to 2044.

Lawmakers gathered in Window Rock are expected to take up the agreement this
week.

Shelly says there’s little, if any, room to renegotiate it. He says further
negotiations would be detrimental to the tribe and those who work for the power
plant and the coal mine that feeds it.

The Salt River Project operates the power plant, which allows for water
delivery to Arizona’s major metropolitan areas.

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