Navajo Nation Lawmakers Pass Bill To Enact Alcohol Tax

Jul 27, 2015

Lawmakers on the Navajo Nation have approved legislation to tax alcoholic beverages sold in the tribe's casinos.

The 3.25 percent tax is expected to raise $73,000 a year. The revenue would go into a fund administered by the tribe's Division of Public Safety to combat drunken driving on the reservation.

Tribal officials say the tax is directed on retailers and distributors, but consumers are responsible for paying it.

People legally can buy alcohol and drink it only in tribal casinos and at a tribal marina at Lake Powell in Page.

Some lawmakers argued that enacting another tax could strain resources at the Navajo Nation Tax Commission.

The tax will go into effect no later than Oct. 1 if it's approved by Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye.