Trail of the Ancients Region
The "Trail of the Ancients" region coincides with the boundaries of a three-county region located within Northwest New Mexico. Much of the region is predominately rural and the tri-county region encompasses 15,000 square miles, 6 municipalities, and 6 Native American Reservations. The region is also home to 77 rural and unincorporated communities which most tend to be located on these Native American Reservations.
Stronger Economies Together
The Stronger Economies Together (SET) Initiative is a national Program Sponsored by USDA-Rural Development that was created to strengthen the capacity of rural communities in America to plan their future and then to start bringing in resources to implement those plan. The initiative was introduced to the region as the “Trail of the Ancients Region” 2 years ago and is now a key contributor to the development of the region’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. At the end of the 2 year SET study and planning process, the development of a “High Quality Plan” will be generated for the Northwest region of New Mexico. The results of the 2 year study and planning process will be used to target future USDA and other funding to complete strategies and activities within the plan.
The Trail of the Ancients Region’s “High Quality Plan” coincidently is being developed parallel to the region’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) plan. The plan will incorporate rural focus and rural strategies into the CEDS, which has previously been accomplished in past plans but not to the extent of this year’s anticipated inclusion. Throughout the course of the 2 year SET process the participants of the SET initiative identified 3 targeted industry sectors and 1 technical assistance group to use as avenues to improve the economic health of the rural communities in Northwest New Mexico.
The Northwest New Mexico Council of Governments received notification that the Trail of the Ancients Regional Rural Economic Development Strategy Plan has passed review from USDA's National SET review committee. The plan is now deemed "High Quality"