WINDOW ROCK, AZ – The 24th Navajo Nation Council approved Legislation No. 0258-22 appropriating $11,400,000 of Síhasin Funds to the Navajo Nation Hospitality Enterprise (NNHE) for the construction of a hotel and restaurant in Shiprock, NM.
The bill also amends Resolution CAP-19-16 to transfer responsibility and allocate $8.3 million in permanent trust funds from the Navajo Gaming Enterprise to the NNHE for the project. Sponsored by Law and Order Committee Chair Eugenia Charles-Newton, Legislation No. 0258-22 passed by a vote of 21 in favor, zero opposed. A directive was also approved instructing the NNHE to explore options for obtaining adequate flood insurance.
“A hotel and Navajo-inspired restaurant for the community of Shiprock is one step closer to being a reality,” said Speaker Seth Damon. “The Navajo Nation welcomes thousands of tourists annually who visit the Four Corners region and will make this new hotel a business hub. We commend Madam Chair Eugenia Charles-Newton for her steadfast leadership and all the stakeholders involved in getting this project moving forward. The Navajo Nation Council urges President Nez to sign this economic development venture into law.”
According to NNHE Chief Executive Officer Mr. Stanley Saap, the planned hotel will be an AAA Three Diamond Property, have 80 rooms, a full-service restaurant, an indoor pool, and meeting rooms. From the groundbreaking to the grand opening day, the property will take two years to construct and cost the Navajo Nation around $22.5 million.
“The Shiprock hotel and restaurant changes the economic landscape for the northern agency,” said Madam Chair Eugenia Charles-Newton. “This hotel project will boost our local economy and bring much-needed revenue to the Navajo people. The hotel will also create hundreds of new jobs and will offer a place to stay for the thousands of tourists visiting parks and monuments in the Four Corners region each year. We thank the Navajo Gaming Enterprise for what they tried to do but were limited in completing the project during this pandemic. We are grateful that the Navajo Nation Hospitality Enterprise is now our project partner.”
Due to increasing construction and supply costs since 2016, the funding shortfall was fulfilled when Legislation No. 0258-22 appropriated the $11.4 million. According to the NNHE, $970,000 will be used for architecture and design, $700,000 for site improvements, $800,000 for required NTUA utility upgrades, $17.9 million for building construction, and $2,050,000 for hotel and restaurant furniture and equipment.
President Nez has 10 days to approve or veto the bill once it’s certified by Speaker Damon. Should the President take no action, the resolution automatically becomes law.