WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. - President Ben Shelly announced June 10 he approved a $1.5 million purchase of approximately 375 acres of land known as Turquoise Ranch to benefit Navajo relocatees and surrounding communities in Flagstaff.
"Today we bought Navajo land back and now we will move forward to begin exploring housing development options and how we can create more jobs," said President Shelly. "The ranch has a cell tower, electricity, wells and is near the railroad. Our next step is to complete a feasibility study to decide what new project to start first."
On May 23, in a proposed resolution with the Navajo-Hopi Land Commission (NHLC) and the Department of Justice authorized the transfer of $1.5 million and to convert the land to trust status and provide housing for families, improve economic development, education and social conditions for Navajo communities. The land will address the special needs of beneficiaries and affected communities and offer new home sites for those who have been displaced through relocation.
Navajo Nation Council Delegate Lorenzo Curley (Klagetoh, Wide Ruins, Houck, Lupton, Nahata Dziil) and NHLC Executive Director Raymond Maxx joined President Shelly as he approved the purchase.
"I've been on the Navajo-Hopi Land Commission for six years and I'm glad the sale has finally been completed," said Curley.
The NHLC is delegated to make land selections and exchange provisions pursuant to the Navajo-Hopi Indian Relocation Amendment Acts of 1980.
Located eight miles northwest of Winslow, Ariz., Turquoise Ranch is easily accessed from Interstate 40 and Winslow and is located in Coconino and Navajo counties in Arizona. Bob and Karen Falcon formerly owned Turquoise Ranch.