Navajo Tribal Council Approves Junk Food Tax

By  Stina Sieg
January 31, 2014

Junk food might be getting more expensive across the Navajo Nation. The Tribal Council has approved an additional 2 percent tax on unhealthy snacks. That includes pastries, chips and soda. The 2 percent tax would be added to the tribe's current 5 percent sales tax.

Revenue from the new tax would be used by chapters to promote recreation and health and would fund everything from community gardens to basketball courts. Sponsors of the bill say they are trying to promote healthy living and stem the diabetes epidemic the reservation. Opponents say the bill burdens consumers.

A separate measure also approved would remove the tax from fresh fruits and vegetables. Both bills now move on to President Ben Shelly for consideration.