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Black Mesa United Held Meeting

Black Mesa United Held Meeting
June 17
06:31 2017

Black Mesa United held its 7th annual meeting June10 in the Monument Valley High School cafeteria in Kayenta.

The community group was celebrating its efforts to get the Manymules Waterline operating.

Black Mesa residents lack potable water and many community members blame the Peabody Coal Mine for contaminating their water supply.

Residents living within the Peabody Leasehold Area have lived without services for decades.

At the recent meeting BMU was honoring the vision of two past leaders – Jones Begay and Ned Yazzie – who pushed for the waterline.

While it can take 20 years to get such a waterline up and running, the Manymules line will be expedited, Black Mesa United President Kee Yazzie said.

Back in 1960 few Black Mesa residents had grazing due to a lack of water, Yazzie explained. Officials came out and made promises – roads, water, home improvements – but nothing was ever done, he added.

Finally, in 2009, Black Mesa United (Dzili’jiin Bee Ahota, Inc.) was formed to fight for improvements, Yazzie said.

BMU’s goal is to advocate for the community and provide a voice for the residents.

“Each person is responsible for water,” Katherine Benally said.

Many past and present tribal leaders supported BMU’s efforts, including Vice President Jonathan Nez, former delegates Katherine Benally and Amos Johnson, current delegates Leonard Tsosie, Walter Phelps and Dwight Witherspoon, Karletta Chief, Kee Yazzie, Daniel Peaches, Audrey Nelson and many more.

 

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