Navajo council waiting for special session on plant lease

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) – The Navajo Nation Council has tabled legislation seeking to extend the lease on a coal-fired power plant in northern Arizona.

Council members say they’ll wait for a special session on the issue Monday in Window Rock.

The current lease for the Navajo Generating Station in Page is scheduled to expire in December 2019.

If the tribe doesn’t approve a lease extension by July 1, the plant will have to close at the end of this year to be torn down by 2020.

The plant’s owners announced in February they plan to close it when their lease expires, citing the availability of less expensive power generated by burning natural gas.

The power plant and a coal mine that supplies it employ about 750 people.