Jemez gov speaks out

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Joshua Madalena opposes park service control of Valles Caldera

By Dave Menucucci

Jemez Pueblo – Speaking at a meeting of the Valles Caldera Board of Trustees at the Jemez Pueblo Community Resource Center Wednesday, Joshua Madalena, tribal governor, stated his opposition to converting the Valles Caldera National Preserve to a National Park Service Preserve.  

He criticized a National Park Service report about the feasibility of acquiring the preserve for not having properly considered the Pueblo.  “We have been worshiping on these lands for thousands of years,” he said, “and we want assurance that we will continue to have access to our traditional sacred grounds.  The report did not address our needs.”

His opposition to a management change was explicit.  “We oppose the proposed change of management,” he said emphatically.  “We want to maintain our excellent working relationship with the Valles Caldera Trust regarding access to our lands.”  

The governor also questioned the process for studying the transfer of the preserve to the National Park Service and expressed displeasure with New Mexico’s congressional delegation.  “This was not right,” he said.  “These are our lands and we are disappointed in Sen.

Bingaman and Sen. Udall for not consulting with us during the study.”

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