New Mexico finalizes land exchange with Navajo Nation

New Mexico News

The New Mexico State Land Office and the Navajo Nation are exchanging more than 80,000 acres of land. 

The deal was nearly 30 years in the making. 

The land sits in Cibola, McKinely and San Juan counties. 

It’s significant to the Navajo Nation because two Navajo cemeteries and some ancient Navajo dwellings sit on the land. 

For the state, there are benefits too. 

“The state gets consolation. We get the same income, and we solve a lot of the checkerboard issues,” Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn said.

The State Land Commissioner says the exchange will also give the Navajo people better access to water, electricity and gas because of easement issues. 

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