Navajo president OKs lease for coal power plant

Posted at: 04/30/2013 9:34 PM
By: The Associated Press

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) - Navajo President Ben Shelly has signed off on a lease extension for a coal-fired power plant on the reservation.
    
Shelly's signature on Tuesday came after lawmakers heavily debated the lease for the Navajo Generating Station, adding a slew of amendments.
    
The power plant's owners now must decide whether they can agree to the changes.
    
The legislation extends the lease to 2044 and boosts yearly payments to the tribe from $3 million to $43 million. It also provides scholarship money and gives the Navajo Nation a shot at partial ownership of the power plant near Page.
    
Lawmakers tacked on amendments to control fly ash, protect claims to water and name the federal government as a lessee.
    
A spokesman for the plant operator says the owners will be reviewing the changes.

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