Originally published Tuesday, July 9, 2019 at 10:57a.m.

LECHEE, Ariz. — The Nez-Lizer administration sees economic potential in Navajo Generating Station assets after a visit to the power plant June 29.

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer met with officials from the Navajo Generating Station at the power plant to receive an update on the decommissioning timeline and to discuss retaining certain assets within the property that could create more economic opportunities for Navajo people and entrepreneurs in the future.

The day began with a meeting with the SRP (Salt River Project)/NGS team working with various Navajo Nation divisions on close-out procedures and environmental compliance. Discussions on retaining assests occurred previously, however, additional property that could be of use to the Navajo Nation for future business opportunities was added by the Nez-Lizer administration early last month. 

The team toured the administration building, maintenance warehouse, plant and railway house. Nez and Lizer thanked Navajo employees during the tour and took time to greet and speak briefly with each of them. The Nation’s leaders strongly encourage the NGS employees and Kayenta Mine workers to become entrepreneurs, using the skills and experience they gained working at the plant to create their own businesses in order to submit bids on projects on the Navajo Nation.

“We see opportunity in the assets that the Nation will retain and in the workforce that has been empowered through the work skills and vast experience and knowledge they have gained over the years,” Nez said. “Vice President Lizer and I believe in our people — we believe that they can harness what they’ve learned and become successful business owners.”

Both leaders, who were also joined by Division of Economic Development Director JT Willie, Division of Natural Resources Director Dr. Rudy Shebala, and Division of Community Development Director Dr. Pearl Yellowman, see great potential in the property for many years to come. They also thanked the SRP/NGS officials for taking the time to provide a detailed tour and discussion.  

“Throughout this transition, it’s important that we continue to work together with the NGS officials, the workforce, and others to continue creating a positive and sustainable path for our Nation. We envision our people taking the lead in many areas of economic development and job creation,” Lizer said. 

Later this fall, SRP/NGS will host future receptions that will incorporate career fairs inclusive of colleges and businesses that wish to expand in the Lake Powell region. This will eventually lead up to a farewell event that will highlight the history the plant shared with the region and the impact it made on families, both Navajo and non-Navajo.

Information provided by the Navajo Nation

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