NAVAJO NATION - While much of the Valley is cleaning up downed trees from the monsoon storms over the last few days, in Navajo Nation, the storms meant many couldn't leave their homes.
Typically in a flooded area in the Valley, you'll see a flooded area with nearby roads you can take to avoid driving through water.
In Navajo Nation, drivable roads are hard to come upon after flooding because a majority are unpaved.
District 7 Rep. Jasmine Blackwater-Nygren says, "My sister who has three very young children, only her husband works, he couldn't get to work yesterday. So they literally had to choose to make a paycheck yesterday."
Blackwater-Nygren lives in and represents Navajo Nation.
"The roads have been washed out and I believe it was yesterday the roads were so bad that in the morning time, people weren't able to get to work or drive through the roads because it's a dirt road and it's washed out," she said.
It’s a problem for many roads after flooding — but's not a new problem.
There are about 14,200 miles of road in Navajo Nation and more than 9,000 miles, or 84%, are dirt roads.
"If there was a paved road, if there was more infrastructure, this would not have happened," Blackwater-Nygren said.
Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez says red tape has been a major hurdle, but help may be on the way from DC.
"Were hopeful there will be specific allocations for the 574 tribes dealing with road improvement," Nez said.
The White House says funding is being set aside for projects like this, but how much funding? The White House wasn’t able to say as the bill has been in flux while it’s being negotiated.
Blackwater-Nygren said she's spoken with the administration that told her the bill would support paving and roadwork on tribal nations.
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