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Gallup Sun

Tuesday, Sep 27th

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You are here: Opinions Viewpoints Unhappy with dissolution of Land Grants Committee

Unhappy with dissolution of Land Grants Committee

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NAMBÉ, N.M. — I am deeply disappointed by the decision to dissolve the New Mexico Local Government, Land Grants & Cultural Affairs Committee. The representation of land grants, acequias, traditional, and rural communities must always be at the forefront of New Mexico public policy. They are a critical part of the heart, soul, and history of our state. These communities also represent the economic potential that our future holds, but only if we keep them as a top priority.

Prior to statehood, and subsequently through our state’s constitution, land grant, acequia, and traditional land issues have always been reflected as critical priorities for our state. My father created an interim committee to work on these issues when he was Speaker of the House. I was thrilled when Speaker [Brian] Egolf, D-Santa Fe, made it a standing committee, which is why I am so disappointed to see this decision.

The decades-long work by these committees has laid the foundation for the important work I am doing on these issues at the federal level.

After communicating with Speaker Egolf, I’m encouraged that he’ll be sitting down and meeting with leaders from land grant and acequia communities on how best to move forward. This committee is not only part of our history, but part of our future.

By Sen. Ben Ray Luján, D-N.M.