OOC begins printing first batches of CARES Act Hardship Assistance checks for Navajo elders
WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. – The Navajo Nation Office of the Controller (OOC) continues to work through the challenges of processing over 16,000 changes of address requests, limited personnel due to the spread of COVID-19, and other setbacks and has begun printing and mailing the first batches of Hardship Assistance checks for Navajo elders.
OOC processed the first batch of 2,500 checks on Monday, and continues to print 5,000 checks daily until the 48,000 plus checks are completed and mailed. OOC expects to complete printing and mailing of all 48,000 checks by Feb. 4, 2022. The delivery of the checks to recipients will vary depending on postal services. Each elderly recipient will receive approximately $342.
The Office of the President and Vice President is also temporarily re-assigning staff members from the Executive Branch to assist with data entry, mailing, and other tasks to expedite the Hardship Assistance process. Staff will be rotated to complete tasks daily and to increase production during evenings and weekends.
“We are doing our best to work through the challenges and facilitate this process as efficiently as possible. We ask the Navajo people to please be patient and understand that COVID-19 is impacting our staff. Checks for elders are being printed and we will get them out as quickly as possible. We are also in contact with financial entities to determine how we can speed up the checking printing process,” said Navajo Nation Controller Elizabeth Begay.
Once all 48,000 CARES Act Hardship Assistance checks for elders are processed and mailed, the Office of the Controller will focus on issuing the ARPA Hardship Assistance checks in mid-February, which will provide $2,000 for each enrolled adult and $600 per minor.
Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer approved the reallocation of $16 million in CARES Act funds for Hardship Assistance for enrolled members of the Navajo Nation who are 60 years old and over, and who previously demonstrated need for assistance to mitigate the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
For more information regarding hardship Assistance, a Frequently Asked Questions document is available at: https://www.opvp.navajo-nsn.gov/News-Media/Latest-News. Additional information and forms are also available online at https://www.nnooc.org and on the ARPA website at www.navajonationarpa.org.
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