Kayenta Township Tax Initiative for Economic Development


In 1997, Kayenta became the first township on the Navajo Nation to take advantage of new opportunities for local governmental authority by implementing a 2.5% retail tax that brings in hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. This revenue has enabled the Township to build a solid waste transfer station, obtain leveraged financing for economic development projects, and support a local government office that oversees business and homesite leases and creates local laws and ordinances. As the only self-sufficient "township" located on an Indian reservation in the United States, the Kayenta Township demonstrates how local empowerment and governance can foster self-determined, self-sustaining economic development that addresses community-specific needs.

Native Nations
Resource Type

"Tax Initiative Economic Development". Honoring Nations: 1999 Honoree. Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Cambridge, Massachusetts. 2000. Report.


This Honoring Nations report is featured on the Indigenous Governance Database with the permission of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development.

Related Resources


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