Navajo Nation, San Juan County projects in capital outlay bill sent to governor

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times
Navajo veterans listen to a town hall meeting on Aug. 24, 2017 at the Walter Collins Center in Upper Fruitland. The capital outlay bill passed by New Mexico lawmakers lists $203,000 for improvements of the center.

FARMINGTON — An assortment of infrastructure projects on the Navajo Nation and in San Juan County could receive $16.77 million in capital outlay funding if Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham approves the bill sent to her office by state lawmakers.

Members of the New Mexico Legislature passed Senate Bill 212, which would provide $827.73 million in capital outlay to various projects throughout the state, before adjourning the regular session last week.

The total amount for the council includes $14.81 million to help communities on the Navajo Nation.

Tribal President Jonathan Nez commended state lawmakers for passing the bill. He said the action will help fund "much-needed projects and initiatives."

"Throughout the state's legislative session, we had the opportunity to meet with many legislators and present our nation's priorities related to infrastructure, capital projects and job creation," Nez said.

San Juan County officials requested capital outlay funds to replace the aging helicopters used by the San Juan County Sheriff's Office. The capital outlay bill passed by New Mexico lawmakers has $3.28 million for the county's request.

Navajo Nation Council delegates, chapter government officials and Nez were among those who advocated for passing the bill during the 30-day session, according to the president's office.

The bill calls for providing San Juan County with $3.28 million for a new helicopter for the San Juan County Sheriff's Office.

County officials requested funding for three items, but the helicopter was the only one listed. Other projects seeking funding were submitted by municipalities and other entities in the county.

A new helicopter was requested because the two helicopters the sheriff's office currently operates are nearly 50 years old and underpowered, according to The Daily Times archives.

The state Senate passed the bill on Feb. 15. It was approved by the state House of Representatives on Feb. 17.

The $827.73 million in capital outlay consists of $30 million from the general fund, $116.62 million in other state funds and $681.1 million from severance tax bonds, which are bonds repaid by taxes on oil, gas and other extraction industries.

Capital outlay projects in SB 212

  • $107,000 to plan, design and construct a helipad in Beclabito Chapter
  • $75,000 for a helipad access road in Beclabito Chapter
  • $100,000 for an administration complex in Gadii'ahi-Tokoi Chapter
  • $75,000 to plan, design and construct a housing complex in Gadii'ahi-Tokoi Chapter
  • $90,000 for a pressurized underground irrigation system for Gadii'ahi-Tokoi Chapter
  • $100,000 for the senior citizen center in Gadii'ahi-Tokoi Chapter
  • $170,000 for improvements to Navajo Route 571 in Gadii'ahi-Tokoi Chapter
  • $50,000 for construction of a storage facility in Lake Valley Chapter
  • $100,000 to purchase road equipment for Lake Valley Chapter
  • $150,000 for construction of water lines in Nageezi Chapter
  • $200,000 for scattered power line projects in Naschitti Chapter
  • $100,000 for scattered power line projects in Naschitti Chapter
  • $1,000,000 for demolishing and replacing Building 32 at Navajo Preparatory School
  • $225,000 for infrastructure improvements at Navajo Preparatory School
  • $150,000 for information technology and security upgrades at Navajo Preparatory School
  • $200,000 for roof renovation at Newcomb Chapter house
  • $75,000 for roof renovation at Newcomb Chapter house
  • $75,000 for solar streetlights in Newcomb
  • $100,000 to construct an incident command center in Shiprock
  • $50,000 to plan, design and construct a multipurpose veterans center in Shiprock
  • $200,000 for Shiprock Senior Center parking lot repairs
  • $350,000 to plan, design and repair the Shiprock Senior Center parking lot
  • $100,000 for bathroom additions in Teec Nos Pos Chapter
  • $78,000 for rural road upgrades in Tooh Haltsooí Chapter
  • $100,000 for construction of bathroom additions in Tsé Daa K'aan Chapter
  • $100,000 for septic system improvements in Tsé Daa K'aan Chapter
  • $75,000 to plan, design and construct a veterans memorial park in Toadlena-Two Grey Hills Chapter
  • $75,000 for Navajo Route 367 improvements in Upper Fruitland Chapter
  • $203,000 for improvements of the Walter Collins Center in Upper Fruitland
  • $50,000 for bathroom additions in White Rock Chapter
  • $75,000 for cistern systems in White Rock Chapter
  • $494,686 for renovation, safety and security upgrades at the 11th Judicial District Court in Farmington
  • $300,000 for irrigation ditch improvements under the Bloomfield Irrigation District
  • $100,000 for improvements in the Kirtland Valley water and sanitation district
  • $75,000 to plan, design and construct water system improvements in Kirtland
  • $2,100,000 for water system improvements, including replacement of the west tank, in Bloomfield
  • $100,000 to purchase farming equipment for San Juan River Dineh Water Users
  • $68,000 to replace the Jones Canyon siphon system on the Hillside irrigation ditch
  • $782,000 for a permanent water supply diversion for the Turley Manzanares ditch
  • $159,000 to install security cameras in downtown, at park and trail systems, and river walk areas in Farmington
  • $265,000 for San Juan Regional Medical Center to purchase medical gas systems
  • $255,000 for purchasing equipment for the parks department in Aztec
  • $150,000 for purchasing  vehicles for the Aztec Police Department
  • $160,000 for purchasing police vehicles for Bloomfield
  • $925,000 for purchasing scuba equipment for the Farmington Fire Department
  • $600,000 for building and supplying a therapy pool at Lions Pool in Farmington
  • $400,000 for a soup kitchen and meal center in Farmington
  • $45,000 for purchasing off-road rescue and patient transport utility task vehicle for Farmington Fire Department
  • $520,000 for steam plant improvements at San Juan Regional Medical Center
  • $100,000 for the women's inpatient and childbirth unit at San Juan Regional Medical Center
  • $75,000 for construction at the San Juan College School of Energy's geology museum
  • $1,100,000 for a student health center at San Juan College in Farmington
  • $120,000 for the math and science building at Diné College's south campus in Shiprock

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at nsmith@daily-times.com.

Support local journalism with a digital subscription to The Daily Times.