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Navajo Nation Purchases Colorado Land

Navajo Nation Purchases Colorado Land
July 29
14:58 2017

Naabik’iyati’ Committee OKs Land Purchase

Making the Navajo People Whole Again….President Begaye

The Navajo Nation’s Naabik’iyati’ Committee has approved buying land in Colorado for $23 million.

The Wolf Springs and Boyer ranches include about 16,379 acres (26-square-miles) in Huerfano and Custer counties. It is located approximately 195 miles south of Denver.

Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye said the purchase will make the Navajo people whole again.

The money will come from the Land Acquisition Fund.

Under the Navajo Nation Code, Title 16, Section 4, the Naabik’iyati’ Committee has final approval over all land purchases that exceed $20 million.

Council member Dwight Witherspoon

“The purchase of the ranch  would make agricultural, political, business and spiritual sense,” according to Delegate Dwight Witherspoon, who sponsored the legislation. “This would open many opportunities for the Nation within all those areas.”

The ranch is in excellent condition, Witherspoon added.

The ranch includes nearly $800,000 worth of equipment, grandfathered water rights and 200 head of cattle and more than 300 head of bison.

This acquisition would enable the tribe to get into the bison meat market. Bison meat sells for about twice the amount of beef.

“This opportunity will allow us to be near Sisnaajiní, which is the only sacred mountain   that we are not close to,” said Delegate Leonard Tsosie. “The   purchase will let     us gain some of our aboriginal lands back.”

Sisnaajiní is also known as Blanca Peak.

Delegate Steven Begay said that Sisnaajiní has a strong spiritual meaning in many Navajo songs and prayers.

Though he supported the purchase, Delegate Tom Chee had some concerns.

“The Nation has made dozens and dozens of land purchases in the past, like buying new toys left and right – but to this day, I have not seen any investments or developments within those land areas,” Chee said.

(Featured Photo: Wolf Springs Ranch)

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