Navajo Citizens’ CALL FOR REMOVAL of water lawyer Stanley Pollack, by Declaration, Petition, & Exclusion
[To be filed with the Water Settlement Court, BIA, Bar Association, and Navajo Supreme Court.]
Because he has most offended and most disregarded the Navajo People and our Treaties, this action is taken by the People pursuant to the Navajo-U.S. Treaties of 1849 & 1868.
I. Declaring lawyer Stanley Pollack to have committed “outrages” upon the Navajos, under Article VI of our 1849 Treaty, and to have “maltreated” us with regard to our water rights, treaty rights, human rights, and related injuries.
II. Declaring lawyer Stanley Pollack to be a “bad man among the whites” under Article 1 of our 1868 Treaty.
III. Petitioning the United States―by delivering this Declaration and Petition to its Navajo Region Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs―to proceed, at once, against Mr. Pollack under Article VI of our Treaty of 1849 and Article 1 of our Treaty of 1868.
IV. Calling upon any Navajo tribunal, or Treaty-authorized body of Navajos, of appropriate authority, for the exclusion from our Reservation of Mr. Pollack for past and ongoing injuries against us, our families, our rights, and our future as a separate and sovereign indigenous people.
V. Supporting our Navajo Supreme Court in their opinions to save our government, and to disbar lawyers for the ongoing coup against our government by certain lawyers, and calling on our Supreme Court and the Navajo Nation Bar Association to disbar lawyer Stanley Pollack for misconduct under the Rules of Professional Conduct, specifically (but not exclusively) Rule 8.4.
A. Under our Treaties, it is we, the Navajo People (i.e., the “Indians” referenced in the Treaties) and not the modern Navajo central government, that ultimately hold the rights and responsibilities under the Treaties; and
B. Under Article VI of our 1849 Treaty it states that “Should any citizen of the United States . . . maltreat any Navajo Indian or Indians, he . . . will be arrested and tried, and, upon conviction, shall be subjected to all the penalties provided by law . . . .”; and
C. Under ARTICLE 1 of our 1868 Treaty it states that “if bad men among the whites . . . shall commit any wrong upon . . . the property of the [Navajo] Indians, the United States will, upon proof being made to the agent [i.e., the Navajo Region Director] and forwarded to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs at Washington City, proceed at once to cause the offender to be arrested and punished according to the laws of the United States, and also to reimburse the injured persons [the Navajo people] for the loss sustained”; and
D. It is we, the Navajo people, and our property that are ultimately protected by the Treaties, and we are among the persons who have sustained and continue to sustain outrages against us and injuries to our property rights, and in particular our water rights, our economic rights, our rights to just compensation for waived and/or lost rights, and our futures at the hands of Mr. Pollack (see Exhibit A, “Twelve Points of Injury,” at the end of the signature pages of this document); and
E. As far back as 1832, in Worcester v. Georgia, the U.S. Supreme Court acknowledged inherent Indian rights to exclude persons from their lands, and Cohen’s Handbook of Federal Indian Law (2005) further declares that a tribe needs no grant of authority from the federal government to exercise the inherent power of exclusion of persons from tribal territory, and that this power is a fundamental sovereign power of a tribe to protect its territory and the welfare of its members.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT DECLARED, PETITIONED, AND/OR DEMANDED THAT:
1. Lawyer Stanley Pollack is blameworthy and accountable for our maltreatment through his past, present, and continuing conduct of dishonesty, fraud, deceit, and misrepresentation of numerous matters regarding our water rights in general, the independent rights of those of us who are Navajo allottees of lands, including allottees under Section 4 of the Allotment Act of 1887, or the several other allotment acts or our 1868 Treaty, and his gross and intentional failure: (a) to acknowledge, respect, and properly employ our treaties and our ancestors sacrifices that secured those treaties, (b) to honestly and fully reveal the relevant law to the people, the Navajo Water Rights Commission, and the Navajo Nation Council, (c) to honestly and fully represent our rights, (d) to honestly and fully disclose our options for maximizing our potential water rights claims, (e) to honestly and fully reveal our People’s options for compensation for any forbearance, loss, or waiver of relevant rights, and (f) to refrain from isolating us from the truth through his misleading, misinforming, deceiving, and manipulating of our leaders to the point that the majority exclude our People’s opinions, desires, and best interests in favor of his and in favor of the outside interests he so obviously serves at the cost of our People, and should therefore be disbarred from practicing law on the Navajo Nation.
2. Pursuant to Clause No. 1, Exhibit A, and many years’ worth of otherwise identifiable misconduct regarding our water rights, lawyer Stanley Pollack is hereby declared to have committed outrages upon us, and we hereby request the Navajo Regional Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs to proceed accordingly under our collective rights as maltreated “Navajo Indians” pursuant to Article VI of our Treaty of 1849.
3. Pursuant to Clause No. 1, Exhibit A, and many years’ worth of otherwise identifiable misconduct regarding our water rights, lawyer Stanley Pollack is hereby declared to be a “bad man among the whites” under Article 1 of our Treaty of 1868, and we hereby request the Navajo Regional Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs to proceed accordingly under our collective rights pursuant to the Treaty, reminding the Director that we are the “injured persons” comprehended by the Treaty and that no action is required by the Navajo central government to bring this request to the Director.
4. Pursuant to Clause No. 1, Exhibit A, and many years’ worth of otherwise identifiable misconduct regarding our water rights, we, the undersigned, hereby declare lawyer Stanley Pollack to be a threat to our territory and government and hereby issue a Navajo citizens’ demand that he should be efficiently, effectively, physically, and forever removed and excluded from our Reservation in the best interests of our sovereignty, rights, property, and welfare, and the welfare of our families, the Navajo People of today, and future generations.
[All signatures count, but only one signature per citizen. Any enrolled Navajo may sign. There is no Treaty age limit for protection rights against outrages, injuries, or threats by enemies like Mr. Pollack.]
SIGNATURE PRINT NAME ADDRESS ENROLLMENT #
Twelve “SHOCKERS” & TRUTHS about the:
Northeastern Arizona Indian Water Rights Settlement
[© 2010, The Diné Water Rights Groups]
1. TREATIES ARE NOW MISSING (but were used by original lawyers in the ‘70s & early ‘80s)
2. THREAT OF ADDITIONAL LITIGATION & PUNISHMENT IS FALSE & THE PEOPLE’S RIGHTS TO PARTICIPATE ARE DENIED
3. MINIMIZING WATER RIGHTS (WINTERS RIGHTS WAIVED) & VIOLATING HUMAN RIGHTS
4. WAIVER OF PRESENT CLAIMS OF OVER $2 BILLION (future LCR irrigation effectively precluded)
5. AZ WATER BANK MOSTLY SERVES SELF, OTHER STATES, & SUBDIVISION DEVELOPERS WITH WATER FOR HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF HOMES
6. AGRICULTURAL PURPOSE EXCLUDED
7. POLLACK’S ESSAYIST: “NAVAJO HAS NO AGRICULTURAL LAND”
8. SETTLEMENT LANGUAGE WILL BE CHANGED BY OTHERS AND POLLACK (perhaps with another waiver of the “canons of construction”)
9. REFERENCES: WATER RIGHTS CLAIMS IN MILLIONS OF ACRE FEET
10. LAWYER CONFLICT OF INTEREST
11. FEDERAL SELF-DETERMINATION POLICY VIOLATED: WESTERN NAVAJO PIPELINE IS NOT NAVAJO (project loss and jobs loss)
12. LAKE MEAD’S HISTORIC LOW MEANS WE MAY NOT GET WATER
DETAILS ON THE 12 SHOCKERS & TRUTHS
1. TREATIES MISSING. No Arizona tribe, except Navajo, has a treaty with the United States, and we have two of them—1849 and 1868. Neither is used or even mentioned in the settlement. The same thing happened with the San Juan settlement. After complaints, the Treaties were given only lip service in the final San Juan settlement. How is it we Navajos can allow our supposedly loyal lawyers to continue to deny our Treaty rights? (Important: The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals reports in its 1981 ruling in Navajo Nation v. U.S. that “the Navajo Nation brought this action . . . seeking a declaration of the Tribe’s rights to the Little Colorado River under its treaties with the United States and various federal statutes and orders” (emphasis added). What happened to our Treaty Rights after lawyer Pollack arrived in the mid-1980s? On the strength of our Treaties rests our largest water rights claims. While other tribes employ their Treaties, we allow one man to control our leaders’ minds and get them to discard our own Treaties, in addition to discarding our history and our traditions, and the sacrifices of Narbona (who gave his life for our 1849 Treaty) and Hwéedi Dine’é, who suffered as prisoners of war. And, on the day he got the Council to vote for his Arizona settlement, he mocked our fundamental laws and our Supreme Court, and got many of our Council to shamefully laugh along with him.)
2. (A) LAWYERS AND WATER RIGHTS COMMISSION DENY AND DISCOURAGE THE NAVAJO PEOPLE’S RIGHTS TO PARTICIPATE IN THEIR OWN LITIGATION SETTLEMENTS and (B) THE PEOPLE’S CHOOSING TO STUDY AND IMPROVE THE SETTLEMENT THROUGH AN APPROPRIATE DELAY WILL NOT START NEW LITIGATION OR BRING DOWN THE WRATH OF A COURT. We are already in water rights litigation. The two principal cases are the Gila River basin adjudication and the LCR basin adjudication. That’s what the settlement is for—to “settle” the old litigation. We have been in each case for over 30 years, and they will not automatically stop if the Navajo People want to know what it is they are settling for. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court, in the Indian water rights case of Arizona v. California (1983) said that “Indians are entitled to take their place as independent qualified members of the modern body politic . . . [and] the Indians’ participation in litigation critical to their welfare should not be discouraged.” The threats by DOJ of no more negotiations and then court punishment are false. Other tribes willing and needing to continue negotiations get to do so, e.g., Hopi.
3. MINIMIZING OF NAVAJO WATER RIGHTS (abandoned are Winters Rights that would reserve past, present, and future needs) and VIOLATING OF NAVAJO HUMAN RIGHTS. In 2002, N.N. attorneys tricked the Council into endorsing a 2001 Arizona Supreme Court case they said was “a huge win for the Navajo Nation.” But, a Native lawyer who graduated from Mr. Pollack’s own Michigan law school did a law review article on the case in 2003, in the Michigan Journal on Race and Law.
Native Lawyer Galen Lemei has this conclusion about the Arizona Supreme Court’s 2001 decision. “Tribes were robbed of most of their land long ago. Now, the Arizona Supreme Court reasons that they should also lose the right to the water necessary to reap the full benefit from the little land they have left. . . . It is unfair that tribes should lose their water rights because of [government failure]. The Arizona Supreme Court [has now] established a standard that gives tribes a shadow of what they had before. In the fight for western water, the tribes [in Arizona] are the losers.”
The Arizona case Pollack praises calls for minimizing Indian water rights, and is contrary to federal precedent. (The case was decided in November of 2001, and tries to set a precedent through the Gila River adjudication.)
In this anti-Indian case, the Arizona Court says that a “minimalist” approach must be taken to Indian water rights. The court mistakenly relies on two U.S. Supreme Court cases as authority. They are Cappaert v. U.S. (1976) and U.S. v. New Mexico (1978). The first one dealt with federal reserved water rights for a rare and curious desert pupfish inside Devil’s Hole in Death Valley, California. The second case dealt with federal reserved rights for the trees and animals of the Gila National Forest in New Mexico. In both cases the Supreme Court said that “minimal need” was the standard for the amount of water that could be reserved for each location. See also Greely v. Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, 712 P.2d 754 (1985); Peg Rogers, In Re Rights to Use Water in the Big Horn River, 30 Nat. Res. J. 439 (1990). (The dictionary says “minimal” means “least possible.” Note: the fish and the forest are not humans.)
Never has the U.S. Supreme Court applied a “minimal need” standard to human beings, including American Indians. In fact, in footnote 4 of the Gila National Forest case, the U.S. Supreme Court employed the term “reasonable quantity of water” in reference to the case of Winters v. U.S., the famous Indian reserved water rights case of 1908.
Now, the Arizona Court, and the Nation’s lawyers, have abandoned Winters Reserved Rights and are applying the “minimal need” and “minimalist” concept for the first time to human beings. This is a Human Rights violation. That is a reason Native lawyer Lemei published his review in the Journal of Race and Law.
4. WAIVER OF PRESENTLY IDENTIFIABLE INJURY AND COMPENSATION CLAIMS OF OVER $2 BILLION DOLLARS. (This does not consider the likely future $1 Billion worth of free use of Navajo water for NGS allowed through the settlement waivers. It is important to note that a waiver in the San Juan Settlement, of our downstream ownership of NAPI/NIIP water, costs us up to $100,000,000 per year from lost lease revenues for water that flows downstream. This right was waived in the San Juan settlement.)
a. $160,000,000 ownership value (@$4,000/af). Waiver of priority rights to 40,780 afy for historic irrigation uses in upper LCR area on the Reservation. See pp. 22-23 of the proposed settlement. Our unused water from the LCR is claimed and used by Arizona for banking of water and other purposes—for free.
b. $1 Billion past use by Navajo Generating Station. At the already regionally applied industrial lease rate of $1,000 per acre foot, NGS has used more than $1 Billion worth of Navajo water (34,000 afy for some 35 years) during its operational life. It has done so for free.
c. $420,000,000 in ownership values (@$4,000/af). This is for the 105,000 afy identified in the BIA Navajo Water Rights Study of 1982 for a 20,000 acre farm NE of Leupp to serve the Leupp, Bird Springs, and Tolani Lake region with forage and other crops, as well as local jobs. A 77,000 acre foot irrigation lake would have served the farm, which was determined to be economically feasible.
d. $1.6 Billion for the 160,000 afy of water that flows through the Nation past the Cameron gaging station. When this water reaches the Colorado, it’s ownership value is no less than $10,000 an acre foot. Navajo is prohibited from owning this water in the settlement, and can only use what it can capture/divert, and will have a junior priority date to that captured. Future irrigation development on the LCR is also effectively precluded to Navajo in the settlement. There is reference made that any future reservoirs be “primarily” for municipal use. Additionally, Navajo is restricted to diverting water from the LCR “that reaches” the Reservation (p. 22). In a cruel irony, this is what started the Winters Doctrine case for the Fort Belknap Reservation in Montana. The upstream farmers had told the tribe they could use whatever water “reaches” the reservation. But there wasn’t enough and there was no reliable priority. That situation for Indian tribes is what the Winters doctrine case got rid of. Now the Settlement is throwing Navajo back to pre-Winters doctrine times. (But, Navajo could demand to own this LCR water, let it run to the river, and then trade for and take clear water from Lake Powell and/or lease the water downstream for revenue to fund on-Reservation economic development. The water’s value, Navajo Winters rights to it, and our People’s future demand this be done.)
5. ARIZONA GETS TO BANK, FOR FREE, OUR UNUSED WATER THAT FLOWS PAST US. Arizona has two water banking programs. Through these programs, Arizona takes unused water and puts it underground (a) for other states, (b) in preparation for shortages, and (c) to establish a housing subdivisions program to help Arizona developers justify building hundreds of thousands of homes.
6. AGRICULTURAL PURPOSE OF THE RESERVATION EXCLUDED FROM HOMELAND PURPOSE THE BY LAWYERS. “Cohen’s Handbook of federal indian Law” (2005) declares under its Indian water rights section, at page 1185, that “One purpose of virtually all reservations is agriculture.” Our Treaties jointly establish this purpose. We can see that the agricultural purpose is excluded from the Settlement (as it was in the San Juan settlement) because a joint homeland/agricultural purpose would justify water rights claims several thousand percent higher than is presently the case in the Arizona settlement. Today, at least 80% of Arizona’s water is used for irrigation. (See the Colville Confederated Tribes case (647 F.2d 42 (1981)) and the Adair case (723 F.2d 1394 (1983)) for the concepts that the general purpose of a reservation, to provide a home for Indians, is to be liberally construed and neither the Cappaert case nor the New Mexico case requires the court to choose between a single purpose.)
Allottees also have agricultural rights, and are nominally addressed in the settlement; but they are not represented. For Mr. Pollack to say the allottees’ issues are with the United States is disingenuous. They are not represented in the Settlement, have not received notice (as attested to by a Council Delegate allottee during the Council’s November 4, 2010 session), and have therefore not been afforded an opportunity to be heard. This is a violation of due process under the U.S. Constitution. Allottees deserve, and the circumstances demand, independent and competent representation of their rights. They are Navajos too and should not be shunted aside by Mr. Pollack et al.. That was done by Tohono O’Odham in their 1982 settlement, which could not be fully implemented for 22 years, partly because of an allottees’ law suit and the need for a second settlement agreement in 2004 to remedy the original oversight. The U.S. Supreme Court has emphasized the importance and interests of “every claimant” in a water rights adjudication. Nevada v. U.S, 463 U.S. 110, 139 (1982).
7. POLLACK’S ESSAYIST: NAVAJO HAS “VIRTUALLY NO AGRICULTURAL LAND.” Stanley Pollack went to the U. of Michigan law school. In 2009, the University journal, Michigan Today, interviewed Pollack and reported, among other troubling information, two absolutely incorrect declarations (I) prior appropriation, or use-it-or-lose-it, applies to Navajo water rights and (II) “virtually none of the reservations 26,000 square miles is suitable for agriculture.” (Available on the Internet.)
In 1961, R. Young and the BIA Navajo Area Office prepared and published a soils report in “The Navajo Yearbook 1951-1961.” They noted that the Nation has 13 million acres of irrigable land, including 1.6 million acres of excellent soil, 3.5 million acres of good soil, 4.4 million acres of fair soil, and 3.4 million acres of poor soil. Thus to say that “virtually none of the reservation . . . is suitable for agriculture” is an outrageous and anti-Navajo declaration to make—even applying the concept of practicably irrigable acreage to the soil numbers. NAPI is 110,000 acres of instant proof of the outrageous statement.
8. SETTLEMENT LANGUAGE WILL BE CHANGED BY OTHERS OR POLLACK (perhaps like the canons of construction were secretly waived in the New Mexico Settlement, and without compensation for this very valuable right). The Water Rights Commission, in its “Whereas” provision 14 of its April 29 approval resolution to the Council for the Settlement, says “The form of the Settlement Agreement may change to reflect editorial, but not substantive, revisions.” This is flatly contradicted by several very significant facts. First, at section 15.4 of the Settlement Agreement itself (p. 101), there are two provisions that call for making later amendments to the Agreement and to the Exhibits. Furthermore, on page 2 of his July 13, 2010, memorandum of transmittal to Resources Committee Chairman George Arthur, Mr. Pollack plainly states:
“The Settlement Agreement includes numerous exhibits, many of which are not final at this time, and some of which will not be prepared until the Settlement Agreement is executed. It is also possible the Settlement Agreement may be modified slightly as the exhibits are finalized. For example, one of the exhibits is proposed legislation for the Arizona Legislature to adopt that would restrict water uses by non-Navajo entities in the LCR basin. The draft legislation has not been finalized and it may be necessary to modify the Settlement Agreement to conform to the final draft legislation. In addition, we anticipate changes will need to be made to the Settlement Agreement to conform to federal legislation approving the Settlement.” [Emphasis added. Plus, he does not note that the Settlement Court’s judgment and decree could change as well.]
Then the Council’s own Settlement approval language says “The Navajo Nation Council hereby approves the proposed [Settlement] in the form of or substantially similar to the form of Exhibit ‘A’.” [Emphasis added. “Substantially” means to a large degree or similar to the main part of something.)
In no more than the length of a sentence added to the San Juan Settlement language before it was finalized―and in devious language—the federal “canons of construction,” or court guidelines of interpretation for Indian treaties, agreements, legislation, and regulations, were waived. These guidelines are an important safety net for Indian tribes, and are also state case law in New Mexico, see State ex rel. Martinez v. Lewis (N.M. Ct. App. 1993). Thus, they were already in place, because of state case law, to protect Navajo interests in the San Juan Settlement. The New Mexico Court of Appeals well describes the canons by saying that (1) treaties and agreements are to be construed, or interpreted, as far as possible, in the sense that Indians understood them and in a spirit that generously recognizes the full obligation of the United States to protect its dependent nations and (2) when there is a vague treaty or agreement together with a course of dealing that, at best, can be characterized as ambiguous, courts must rule, “as a matter of law,” in accordance with canons of construction that liberally favor Indians.
However, there was a problem with the San Juan Settlement. The state of N.M. was reporting Navajo rights in the Settlement to the media truthfully, and their figures on the gross rights tended to be less than was being shared with the Nation by Mr. Pollack. Someone noticed this and realized the discrepancy could lead to a legal conflict and potential win by Navajo based on (a) how the Nation was interpreting the Settlement and (b) the canons of construction being accepted as “a matter of law” in New Mexico. So, the canons were quietly thrown out, or made inapplicable to the San Juan Settlement, by slightly modifying language added to the Settlement.
This was discovered by James Henderson, Navajo elder and retired Arizona State Senator, and reported to the Council in a letter. The Council requested a reply from its legislative counsel and DOJ. The letter of reply to the Council incredibly stated that it was no big deal, and “there is no guarantee the Nation would ever need them (the canons of construction) anyway.” This genuinely ridiculous reply is equivalent to a car dealer delivering a vehicle to a customer and then cutting out the seat belts and removing the spare tire, while saying “There is no guarantee you’ll ever need them anyway.” The Council left the issue at that, accepting the silly reply from its lawyers.
So, the canons-of-construction safety net was removed by Mr. Pollack in the San Juan Settlement. It is suspected he will do likewise through an inserted sentence or two in the new Arizona Settlement. Also, Mr. Pollack never informed the Council or Commission that under the Nation’s 1849 Treaty, in combination with New Mexico case law (State ex rel. Martinez v. Lewis), the Nation had a claim to 1849 priority water rights on at least the original 1868 Treaty lands in New Mexico. (Incredibly, as recently as summer of 2010, when the water rights groups began referencing it again, most or all Water Rights Commission members remained unaware of even the existence of an 1849 Navajo-U.S. Treaty. What sort of tribal lawyer would let this kind of thing happen?)
9. WATER RIGHTS CLAIMS IN THE MILLIONS OF ACRE FEET. A SAMPLE.
a. In the 1970s the Navajo Nation openly discussed claiming 2/3 of the annual flow of the Colorado River, or about 10,000,000 acre feet. (Author Phillip Fradkin’s famous 1995 book on the Colorado River).
b. In 1980, Interior Solicitor Doug Back and Navajo Nation lawyer Jeff Taylor suggested in a law review on Navajo Water Rights (in the prestigious Natural Resources Journal) that the Navajo Nation could establish a tribal entitlement (not a claim, but an actual entitlement) to Colorado River Water of perhaps 2,000,000 acre feet with just over 3% of the land area. (In the past, Pollack cited and employed this reference (in the 1990s and in 2000, and we have printed references) when explaining to outside audiences (but not to Navajo Nation audiences) what the huge potential rights of Navajo might be.)
c. In 1986 attorney Gary Weatherford and Dr. Lee Brown published a renowned book on the Colorado River and related water issues, and stated the expected Navajo claim for Colorado River water would be in excess of 5,000,000 acre feet. Az. Governor Bruce Babbitt wrote the book’s foreword.
d. In 1991, law Professor Lloyd Burton published a highly acclaimed book on Indian water rights and stated Navajo might well have a Colorado River Basin entitlement of 5,000,000 acre feet.
e. In 1997, N.N. lawyer Stanley Pollack declared before the Santa Fe audience at the 75th anniversary of the 1922 Colorado River Compact, that he could not see a Navajo Nation claim to the Colorado basin of anything less than 5,000,000 acre feet. (Statement published by the University of Arizona in the “Arroyo” Journal, Vol. 10, No. 1., and available on the Internet.)
f. In May of 2000, four National experts on Federal Indian Law and Indian Water Rights Settlements, including the current Dean of the University of Colorado Law School and Vine Deloria, Jr. (the late and internationally renowned American Indian scholar) recommended and/or endorsed an immediate Navajo Nation claim to the lower basin of the Colorado River in the amount of 10,000,000 acre feet (by filing in the case of Az. v. California, which closed forever six years later). The core recommendation, by three of the experts, was shared directly with President Kelsey Begaye, following a two day seminar on the subject. When the recommendation was presented to Stanley Pollack several days after the seminar, in 2000, he refused to act then, and maintained that stance. Then Pollack and his supporters engaged in a pressure and smear campaign to get the experts to back off from their recommendation.
10. LAWYER SCOTT MCELROY’S CONFLICTS OF INTEREST. Stanley Pollack’s key assisting attorney, Scott McElroy (and his law firm in Boulder, Colorado) have and have had clients in the lower and upper Colorado River basins whose interests are in competition/conflict with ours. If the N.N. had followed the expert advice described in “f.” above, and filed in Az. v. California (which ended in 2006), McElroy could not have participated and would have had to forego whatever millions his law firm has made over the past decade or so off the Navajo Nation. By not filing, Navajo rights were enormously minimized and jeopardized, while McElroy’s firm stayed on the payroll.
11. WESTERN NAVAJO PIPELINE IS NOT NAVAJO. Exactly like “The Navajo Generating Station” is not Navajo, the Western Navajo Pipeline will not be Navajo-constructed or Navajo-operated. Self-determination contracts with the Interior Department for the pipeline’s construction and operation are prohibited by the Settlement language. Then, we must ask, what is NECA for? What is NTUA for. Where do our increasing numbers of college graduates with professional, technical, and engineering degrees go for work? This is obvious anti-Navajo discrimination and contrary to the federal Self-Determination policies.
12. LAKE MEAD’S HISTORIC LOW LEVEL MEANS WE ARE AT RISK OF NOT GETTING WATER. Lake Mead is at its lowest level, ever, since 1937. Arizona and Nevada are junior rights holders to the Colorado River. And, in Arizona, CAP water is junior to main stem Colorado River water. And, 4th priority CAP water is 4 levels down on the already double junior CAP water. If Lake Mead goes much lower, it will trigger the drought plan that reduces Arizona’s share of river water. The first cut will be 320,000 acre feet. Thus, under present circumstances, the CAP water we are being offered is already at risk before we even get any. This hazardous circumstance cannot be tolerated in a new water settlement that is to last us “forever.” Greater assurance is required.