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Navajo Nation Looking at Sales Tax Hike

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WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — Navajo Nation officials are considering raising the tribe’s sales tax by 1 percent to fund scholarships, and energy and economic development projects.

Navajo President Ben Shelly says the tribe must look at ways to increase its revenue while funding from the federal government shrinks.

Tribal Council Delegate Dwight Witherspoon is sponsoring legislation to set the sales tax at 5 percent on the reservation.

The tribe last raised the tax in 2007 to fund public safety and judicial facilities.

The proposed one percent increase is expected to raise $8 million a year.

Some tribal members objected during a meeting this week, saying an increase in taxes would take already scarce money from people.

Taxes on retail and non-retail sales brought in more than $24 million in fiscal year 2011.

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