SUPREME COURT NULLIFIES SUNLAND PARK’S ATTEMPTED BORDER ANNEXATION

SUPREME COURT NULLIFIES SUNLAND PARK’S ATTEMPTED BORDER ANNEXATION

Less than a month after hearing arguments in the case, the New Mexico State Supreme Court sided with attorneys from Doña Ana County who argued that an attempted annexation of two parcels near the Santa Teresa border crossing was not legal.

Sunland Park had attempted to annex a 5-mile-long, 16-foot-wide strip of land along the U.S./Mexico border that connected to two parcels of land owned by Las Cruces developer Jack Pickel. The county argued that the annexation defied the contiguity requirements for municipal annexations.

When the matter first was litigated, Third Judicial District Judge Jerald Valentine ruled that the annexation could proceed. The county appealed, and the New Mexico Court of Appeals overturned Valentine’s ruling. Sunland Park appealed to the State Supreme Court, which upheld the Court of Appeals ruling.

The Supreme Court ruling further protects the county’s position as the legitimate provider of water and wastewater services in the unincorporated areas of the south county, including the border crossing and several planned residential and industrial building sites.

For more information, call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (505) 647-7229. Residents calling from outside the Las Cruces area may call toll-free at 1-877-827-7200 and request extension 7229.