New Land Withdrawal Designation Regulations Approved

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New Land Withdrawal Designation Regulations Approved

            WINDOW ROCK, AZ. – The Resources and Development Committee of the Navajo Nation Council passed a resolution on Tuesday, June 16th approving the Land Withdrawal Designation Regulation to designate land for future development.

            The Navajo Land Department has been working diligently to amend regulations to clarify and expedite the land withdrawal designation process, which was causing a little confusion among the chapters and making project time lines longer.  These regulations will enhance the chapter Land Use Plans.

            Navajo Nation Land Department Director Mike Halona, stated, “We’re trying to clarify the difference between a land withdrawal designation process and land conveyance process.  We hope the passage of these new regulations will help clarify and streamline the land withdrawal process for the Navajo chapters to develop their community land use plans. Without recording chapter land use plan (CLUP) land designation, we could be adversely developing within an area planned for other use.”

            A land withdrawal designation does not authorize development or disturbance on Navajo Nation land. Moreover, it does not apply to how to get a lease. Prior to any development on the land, a lease must be obtained in addition to the withdrawal. 

           The purpose of a land withdrawal designation is to designate an area of land for future development by ensuring that the rights of grazing permittees, who are in compliance with their grazing permits are properly addressed as applicable and as required under 16 N.N.C. SS 1401 et seq. and to prevent any subsequent claims to the land and ensuring that the affected chapter supports the land withdrawal designation and use of the land.

           Halona added, “With the approval of the Navajo Nation General Leasing Regulations of 2013, which gave the Navajo Nation authority to approve leases; this Land Withdrawal Designation Regulation is step one in the Land Use Planning process.  The Navajo Land Department is in the process of establishing a Navajo General Leasing Office, where all leases and permits will be administered by the Navajo Nation.   Land Withdrawal Designation Regulations was just one among other regulations that are being developed.”

The Resources Development Committee within approval of this legislation also included that “the Navajo Nation government may develop on land designated by the Land Withdrawal Designation without a lease for government purposes only.”

            The Resources and Development Committee authorized the Navajo Land Department director the power and authority to give final approval of all land withdrawal designations on the Navajo Nation.

            For more information about how to acquire a land withdrawal, contact the Navajo Nation Land Department at (928) 871-6401.