A summary on Senator Kyl’s website states that the bill “ Requires all water rights of the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe to be held in trust for the Nation, the Tribe, and their allottees. Directs the Bureau of Reclamation, subject to the availability of appropriations, to plan, design, and construct.”
Navajo spokesperson Ed Becenti, who has lived on the Navajo Reservation his entire life, sees S.2091 differently. Writing in Native Condition, Becenti says the bill “is on a fast track to give Arizona corporations and water interests a ‘present’ that will close the door forever on Navajo and Hopi food and water sovereignty security and self-reliance.”
Becenti argues that the bill is stacked against them. It asks the Navajo and Hopi peoples to waive their priority water rights to the surface waters of the Little Colorado River “from time immemorial and thereafter, forever” in return for the promise of unspecified federal appropriations to supply drinking water to a handful of reservation communities.
Read more: http://j.mp/IJi0D5