Santa Fe, N.M. – Democratic Party of New Mexico Vice-Chair Juan Sanchez III blasted New Mexico Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn for his attempt to obstruct northern New Mexico communities’ efforts for protect the Rio Grande del Norte. Dunn’s obstructionism centers on his anti-public lands agenda and false claims that the land would be better used for oil and mineral production.
“Communities in northern New Mexico worked diligently to protect the beautiful Rio Grande del Norte, and Land Commissioner Dunn disrespects their efforts by actively moving against this wilderness designation. He would rather exploit our resources and put a mine inside the area our community worked so hard to protect.” said Juan Sanchez III, Vice-Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “The Rio Grande del Norte has been an economic driver for northern New Mexico, and continues to be a place where New Mexicans go to practice long held traditions like hunting and fishing. Land Commissioner Dunn needs to get his priorities straight and listen to the community.”
Democratic U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich worked with President Obama to designate the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in 2013 and have continued to complete protection of the area by designating two areas within the monument as wilderness.
New Mexico’s Land Commissioner is responsible for protecting New Mexico’s land and resources for future generations. Unfortunately, Dunn has consistently moved contrary to that purpose and continues to promote policies that exploit New Mexico’s natural landscapes, benefit outside oil and mineral producers, and risk the safety of our land, air, and water.