- Associated Press - Saturday, October 11, 2014

MARIANO LAKE, N.M. (AP) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture says some Navajo families in New Mexico now have running water for the first time.

USDA Rural Development officials held a dedication ceremony Friday for a new water system in Mariano Lake on the Navajo Nation.

A USDA grant of $1 million funded the first phase of the water system’s construction. They say more than 46,000 feet of water lines have been installed with water service now available at 25 homes.

The system will serve the 200 families who belong to the Marian Lake Chapter, which is northeast of Gallup.

Officials say more construction phases are scheduled to bring running water to the rest of the community.

They say some residents previously had to travel 20 miles to haul water back to their homes.

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