Navajo Nation searches for funding to replace decrepit jails in New Mexico, Arizona

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Navajo Nation officials are in search of funding to replace two deteriorating tribal jails.

U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Lujan toured one in Shiprock, New Mexico, last week that has asbestos, lead and mold.

The Farmington Daily Times reports Lujan saw cracks in walls, plumbing issues and cramped spaces in what he said was an “eye-opening experience.”

The Indian Health Service has issued multiple closure notices, with the most recent calling for the building to shut down April 30.

Tribal officials say they’ve secured land for a new judicial and public safety complex but lack $77 million needed for construction.

About $3.5 million is included in a capital outlay bill that awaits Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s review.

The tribe also wants to replace a public safety complex in Window Rock, Arizona.

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