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Navajo Committee OKs Site Lease

Navajo Committee OKs Site Lease
June 11
12:41 2018

Helping Hands gets a leg up.

The Navajo Nation’s Resources and Development Committee gave its nod of approval to the Helping Hands for Christ Baptist Ministry. The committee approved a 1.5-acre mission site lease last week for the civic organization.

Helping Hands is located in Beclabito, N.M., about 22 miles west of Shiprock.

Council Delegate Amber Kanazbah Crotty, who represents Beclabito, urged the committee to support the ministry that provides services for community members and their families. She also sponsored the legislation.

“The Helping Hands for Christ Baptist Ministry is one of the most proactive faith-based ministries within Northern Navajo Agency,” Crotty said. “For the past 29 years the ministry has provided spiritual and community services, such as a bicycle repair shop, youth volunteer groups and food donations.”

Even more importantly, they volunteer at the Shiprock Northern Agency Fair and assist during community emergencies, Crotty added.

According to Crotty’s legislation, Helping Hands would pay a $22.50 rental fee annually for its 1.5 acres. The price represents the minimum annual fee of $15 per acre.

But the ministry’s rental rate did not go unchallenged.

Helping Hands hasn’t paid a rental fee in 29 years, Delegate Benjamin L. Bennett pointed out. He thought the ministry should pay 29 years of back-rent before getting a new lease.

“The church never had a proper mission site lease approved by the committee,” Bennett said. “It is only fair if they pay the rental fee for the 29 years they have been operating on the Nation.”

The Resources and Development Committee approved Bennett’s amendment requiring the ministry to pay $652.50 in back-rent – representing $22.50 a year for the past 29 years.

Crotty’s legislation passed by a 3-0 vote. The committee serves as final voice on the issue.

The Helping Hands for Christ Baptist Ministry, founded in 1989, provides faith-based services, social functions and charity and volunteer services for the youth, adults, elders and families of Beclabito and surrounding communities.

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