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8/13/2013 10:41:00 AM
President Shelly: overregulation hurts Navajo housing development
Navajo-Hopi Observer


ST. MICHAELS, Ariz. - Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly said the federal government overregulates the Navajo Nation, which creates problems for housing development on the Navajo Nation.

"The CFR (Code of Federal Regulations), that's what hinders our development in Indian Country," Shelly said during a meeting with the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) Aug. 5.

Shelly added he is advocating for more Navajo autonomy in his meetings with federal officials.

Congress asked the GAO to investigate barriers in Indian Country to housing development. A three-person panel visited the Navajo Nation last week with plans to visit various communities throughout the week.

Shelly said land status was an issue. Land Department Manager Mike Halona said federal laws apply to all federal lands, regardless if there are people living on federal land.

"I think that is where a big change and an easy change would need to be made, when all of these federal environmental lands were enacted, they just put federal lands across the board, not thinking there is actually people living on it. That's the big problem," Halona said.

Shelly said the Navajo government is making changes to help speed up development, like the expedited 164 process that puts deadlines to documents needing signatures from key Navajo government officials.

"We are making progress, but we need new solutions that consider all options," Shelly said.


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Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: Don- Brown

Not only problems with the Housing Projects, but also with lots other Navajo Government Projects are slow and lots of red taps. I been waiting on assistance from Navajo Veterans Benefit for three months and moving slowly. I may not getting because of lots of red taps, and official always out of office, and can't be reach.



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