Taos Pueblo officials eye community, land-use planning

In 2012, Taos Pueblo’s administration will focus on community

Matthew van Buren
Posted 1/20/12

In 2012, Taos Pueblo’s administration will focus on community and land-use planning while working on a variety of projects, according to a release from the newly installed officials.

A small crowd gathered outside San Geronimo Church during the …

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Taos Pueblo officials eye community, land-use planning

In 2012, Taos Pueblo’s administration will focus on community

Posted

In 2012, Taos Pueblo’s administration will focus on community and land-use planning while working on a variety of projects, according to a release from the newly installed officials.

A small crowd gathered outside San Geronimo Church during the brisk morning Jan. 15 to hear statements from and greet the new officials following the annual blessing of the canes ceremony.

Laureano Romero is serving as governor in 2012, and Benito Sandoval is this year’s war chief.

“We are looking forward to a very progressive and rewarding year,” Romero said in an interview with The Taos News. “We are looking forward to working with everybody.”

Romero described himself as a “traditionalist” who believes in his culture, though he said cooperating with the state, federal government, town of Taos and other entities will be central to accomplishing many of the Pueblo’s goals.

“We look forward to a productive year working with our people, Tribal Council and the different tribal entities that provide services to the Pueblo residents and those whose functions are to support the Pueblo in the various endeavors for the benefit of its people,” the statement from the new administration reads. “We also look forward to working cooperatively and productively on a government-to-government basis with other local and state governments, and at the national level with the White House, federal government and our congressional delegation on those issues that are important to Taos Pueblo and its people.”

Among the projects Romero said the new administration will focus on are improvements to roads on the Pueblo — a project he said has been prolonged too long. He also said it will be important for the administration to address alcohol and drug abuse among Taos Pueblo’s youth.

According to the release, the 2012 administration intends to focus on a variety of projects, including:

• Encouraging young people to gain a better understanding of the Pueblo’s traditional values, language and needs “so that they may plan their personal development and educational efforts to help the community uphold those values and to help meet the future needs of our community”;

• Working on the finalization and early implementation of the Abeyta water settlement;

• Working with the town, state and federal entities to implement the memorandum of agreement concerning the Taos Regional Airport, including seeking legislation to permanently protect airspace over Pueblo lands;

• Working with various tribal programs to carry out priorities in the areas of health and community services, education, government services, municipal services, natural resources, environmental protection, housing, utilities, tribal infrastructure and the judicial system;

• Establishing a foundation to advance economic development;

• Working with the Indian Health Services to ensure good health care

• Working with the Bureau of Indian Education, Taos Day School, the Taos Municipal School District and others to ensure Taos Pueblo students receive quality educations;

• Working to preserve and protect Taos Pueblo, its natural and cultural resources.

“A primary focus will be on comprehensive community and land-use planning that can bring all the above priorities and responsibilities under a unified effort to meet short-term and long-range goals,” the release states.

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