SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A Utah ballot proposition that could have led to an expansion of a three-person county commission that Navajos recently took control of has been rejected by voters.
Results posted Friday by San Juan County show the measure narrowly lost 153 votes in the southeastern Utah county that overlaps with the Navajo Nation.
The measure backed by Blanding Mayor Joe Lyman reignited a fierce dispute over Navajo voting rights after two Navajos won seats on the commission in last year’s election.
Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez had urged voters to defeat a measure he and others argued was an attempt to undermine Native American voices. Nez said Friday in statement the results show the issue of expanding the commission should be put to rest for good.
“The defeat of this measure should encourage all county officials to move forward with more meaningful initiatives like the improvement of school bus routes, stimulating the economy, creating jobs, and many others issues that will benefit all county residents,” said President Nez.
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