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Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer on Thursday signed a resolution that reallocates CARES Act funds for Hardship Assistance for enrolled citizens 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.

The resolution was passed on Wednesday night by the Navajo Nation Council during a special session held on Wednesday. Nearly $16 million in CARES Act funds will provide approximately $300 dollars per eligible person 60 years and older.

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Elders will not need to re-apply for the hardship funds. The Office of the Controller is beginning the payment process and elders can anticipate receiving the check payment in this week or next.

“We love and cherish our elders very much. This pandemic has created many challenges for everyone, especially our elder parents and grandparents. Throughout this pandemic, we’ve been to all 110 chapters and we’ve listened to the stories and experiences shared by our people and we understand that there are many needs within homes and among families. We strongly encourage our people to use the funds for essential items, supplies, bills, and other expenses that provide financial relief and help your loved ones overcome this modern-day monster known as COVID-19,” said President Nez.

In accordance with federal requirements, CARES Act funds were required to be used no later than Dec. 31, 2021.

In a separate action, the Council also approved on Wednesday, a resolution for Hardship Assistance using American Rescue Plan Act funds, which would provide $2,000 per adult and $600 per minor for enrolled citizens.

The Office of the President and Vice President is awaiting the delivery of the resolution from the Legislative Branch, as of Thursday.

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