Navajo Nation Receives New Mexico Capital Outlay Funding Updates

Damon NM Indian Affairs meeting
L-R: Council Delegate Lomardo Aseret; Lee C. Jim, Bááháálí Chapter President; Milton Davidson, Manuelito Chapter Vice President; Lashawna Tso, New Mexico Indian Affairs Deputy Secretary; Percy Anderson, Manuelito Chapter Secretary; and Council Delegate Seth Damon at Manuelito, NM.

TSAYATOH, NM – Navajo Nation Council Delegate Seth Damon and the District Six Joint Council recently met with Lashawna Tso, Deputy Cabinet Secretary for New Mexico Indian Affairs at Manuelito Chapter to receive updates regarding New Mexico Capital Outlay funding for chapters in the State of New Mexico.

The report focused on capital outlay funding requests for District Six including $3 million for a new Chichiltah Headstart Building, $2 million for the renovation of the Bááháálí senior center, and an additional $2 million for a new veterans building in Manuelito. Throughout the recent New Mexico State Legislative Session, members of the 25th Navajo Nation Council met with state legislators and the Governor to advocate for funding from the state for chapter initiatives.

Deputy Cabinet Secretary Tso said the Office of the Governor and Indian Affairs remain committed to investing in tribal communities and creating economic opportunities through comprehensive investments that benefit the Navajo Nation.

“I want to thank Ms. Lashawna Tso for coming out to Tsayatoh today, also to all the chapters, by submitting their priorities to the Indian Affairs and New Mexico legislators and advocating on behalf of the Navajo Nation,” said Delegate Damon. “It’s a blessing that the New Mexico Legislature authorized over $24 million this year to come to the Navajo Nation for capital projects.”

“This has been a historic investment in capital outlay this legislative session,” said Deputy Cabinet Secretary Tso. “Over $100 million in capital investments throughout the state is on the Governor’s desk for consideration. We identified various projects by the chapters, and it’s our job to get support from the state level.”

If signed into law by the New Mexico Governor, the projects will go a long way for community development. Council Delegate Seth Damon said he is confident that the Navajo Nation will continue to have strong advocacy to gain support for more capital outlay funding to fulfill the needs of its citizens.

The Chichiltah Headstart Building project will create a new, safe, and energy-efficient facility for the program to support early childhood learning. The Baahaali Senior Center renovations will improve accessibility and safety for seniors who frequent the center while providing much-needed updates to existing infrastructure and the veterans building in Manuelito will provide a place for veterans to gather and to eventually access health care, housing assistance, and employment counseling.

“The potential that these projects have to bring not only much-needed infrastructure improvements, but also job creation and economic development opportunities is possible through the partnerships that we have with the state and others,” said Damon. “I thank my Council colleagues for their support for all capital outlay projects for the Navajo Nation.”