Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Navajo Nation (Arizona, New Mexico, Utah)
Posted: January 20, 2022
Window Rock Arizona Navajo Nation

The capital of the Navajo Nation is located in Window Rock, Arizona, named for its famed natural feature. Photo: Ben FrantzDale

The Navajo Nation 

Office of the President and Vice President

January 19, 2022

Nez-Lizer approve resolution reauthorizing chapters to continue conducting public teleconference meetings due to COVID-19

WINDOW ROCK, Arizona – Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer signed Resolution CJA-01-22 on Tuesday, reauthorizing Navajo Nation’s 110 chapters to temporarily continue conducting public meetings through teleconference at a reduced quorum requirement to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

The temporary provisions were first implemented soon after the Navajo Nation Commission on Emergency Management, with concurrence of President Nez, declared a public health state of emergency on March 11, 2020 – prior to the first confirmed case of COVID-19 was confirmed on the Navajo Nation. The 24th Navajo Nation Council approved the legislation on Jan. 7 by a vote of 22 supporting and one opposing. 

“We are in the midst of a surge in COVID-19 infections here on the Navajo Nation. The extension of these meeting provisions for chapters are intended to help reduce the spread of the virus. We truly appreciate the leadership and service of all chapter officials, especially during this pandemic. When it comes to planning and scheduling public meetings at the chapter level, we strongly urge everyone to plan ahead and go above and beyond to provide advanced notice to your chapter members of all public meetings and ensure that they have access to the meetings. Transparency must be a top priority,” said President Nez.

The provisions allow chapter meetings to be conducted under a reduced quorum requirement of three registered chapter members, as opposed to the 25-chapter members requirement to limit person-to-person contact due to COVID-19 risks. 

“This pandemic forced everyone to conduct meetings in a new way to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. It’s been a challenging process especially when it comes to ensuring public notification, access, and participation, but the provisions should not reduce transparency in any way. We appreciate the 24th Navajo Nation Council, Navajo Department of Health, and all our frontline workers for their support in helping to mitigate COVID-19,” said Vice President Lizer. 

Navajo Nation Division of Community Development Executive Director Dr. Pearl Yellowman stated, “The Division of Community Development appreciates the support of President Nez and Vice President Lizer and we remain committed to providing technical assistance to all chapter officials, and we understand the importance of local leadership and the amount of work needed to mitigate the pandemic and address local needs.”

The resolution states that the temporary provisions for chapter meetings will remain in effect until the Navajo Nation’s state of emergency declaration is lifted.

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