No layoffs for Navajo Nation

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 There will be no layoffs when the 2013 Navajo Nation operating budget goes into effect on Oct. 1.
That was the decision of the Navajo Nation Council's Budget and Finance Committee on Monday and the committee reaffirmed their decision on Thursday.

B&F Committee Chairperson LoRenzo Bates (Nenahnezad/Newcomb/San Juan/T'iistoh Sikaad/Tse'Daa'Kaan/Upper Fruitland) informed the Navajo Times on Thursday that the committee met with President Ben Shelly on Monday and Shelly assured them that there would be no layoffs.

Bates said executive office staff reported to the committee on Tuesday that Shelly had issued a memo to all executive branch division and programs to eliminate any layoffs through the use of vacant job positions.

Bates also said that the committee informed Shelly that the committee identified more than 900 vacant positions in the 2012 executive branch budget during the committee hearings on the proposed 2013 tribal government operating budget.

Shelly oversees the executive branch budget.

Bates added that the meeting with Shelly and executive office staff was part of the committee 2013 budget hearings.

He said that the B&F Committee learned about Shelly's failure to carry out their instructions after reading a news story in the Navajo Times on Thursday.

The story reported Shelly's announcement in a Monday press release that he had reduced the proposed layoffs of 150 employees to 27.