The Navajo Nation is extending the public comment period for legislation that would extend the lease for the Navajo Generating Station in Arizona.
Although the public comment period typically lasts five days, Tribal Council Speaker Johnny Naize said comments will be accepted on the measure until tribal lawmakers take a final vote. The current lease for the 2,250 MW coal-fired power plant is set to expire in 2019.
The proposed agreement is for a 25-year extension that would increase payments to the tribe from $3 million to more than $40 million.
If the Navajo Nation approves the lease extension, it would need to be approved by the Secretary of the Interior, a process that could take up to five years. The plant is also facing a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART) proposal that could require an investment of up to $1.1 billion in emissions controls to reduce regional haze.
The owners of NGS include Salt River Project, Arizona Public Service Co., the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Tucson Electric Power Co. and NV Energy (NYSE: NVE). LADWP will sell its ownership share of the plant by 2015 in order to comply with California law.
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