SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Land Commissioner Ray Powell and Navajo President Ben Shelly have signed off on a land exchange that officials say will benefit both governments.
The signing ceremony was Tuesday in Santa [auth] Fe.
The exchange involves a block of state trust land adjacent to the reservation near the Arizona-New Mexico border and a few acres in Silver City that have commercial development potential.
The Land Office says prior to the exchange, the Navajo Nation had leased more than 85 acres of state trust land for a new Navajo Department of Transportation Center.
The transportation complex represents an $18 million investment in the reservation’s infrastructure.
Powell says the land in Silver City will benefit public schools and other trust beneficiaries.
The Land Office will also get revenue from billboard leases now existing on both parcels of land.