NTUA connects 335 families to electric grid with CARES Act funds, work crews continue to connect more homes
WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. – Navajo Tribal Utility Authority has now connected 335 homes to the electric grid using CARES Act funds that the Navajo Nation received to help during the COVID-19, according to a report provided by NTUA to Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer on Monday.
NTUA utility crews continue to work 10-hour days, weekends, and holidays to complete powerline, water, and telecommunications projects. NTUA’s overall goal is to extend electricity to 510 families, which includes over 350 families that were identified during the 2020 LIGHT UP NAVAJO II application process.
“NTUA management and work crews have done a great job in expediting projects and working together to provide electricity, water resources, and telecommunications to more families on the Navajo Nation. These are long-term benefits that will help thousands of Navajo Nation residents for years to come. It’s wonderful to see NTUA work crews working in many communities. We owe them our gratitude for working long hours to move these projects forward. This is a great example of what can be accomplished when we have a united vision and when we work together,” said President Nez.
In August, the 24th Navajo Nation Council and the Nez-Lizer Administration approved $13.8 million for power line projects, $24.7 million to increase overall electric grid capacity, $20.9 million for cisterns systems, $18.6 million for wastewater systems, and $32.8 million for wireless and broadband expansion for NTUA from the Navajo Nation’s CARES Act funds.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created so many challenges for all of us, but this is certainly great news and great work being done by NTUA. As I always say, there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel and NTUA’s work during this pandemic is a part of that bright light. They are not only helping families, but they are helping to build communities and a nation. We commend NTUA and all of our partners who are working hard to improve lives and the quality of life for our Navajo people,” stated Vice President Lizer.
NTUA is also making more progress with water projects and telecommunications infrastructure development to provide more cell phone and internet access for residents.
“District staff members sacrificed their weekend so that these families could have power,” said NTUA General Manager Walter Haase. “They helped with final inspection, installing the meters and meeting with families for orientation. They wanted to make sure the families didn’t have to wait any longer to receive the electricity. This was a strong example of community service.”