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What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

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What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 8:08 am

A commenter on the other post about adding bike lanes mentioned that a bypass could not be built across the mountains above the congestion below because it was "ejido" land.   I was under the assumption that the "untitled" land in this part of Mexico was actually Federal Land and not owned by "Ejiditarians".  I was not aware that there exists any "ejido" groups with entitlements to land or jurisdiction over any lands in this area.  Does anyone know if in fact there are any ejido designated areas here?

There are some groups that claim land titles from time to time but that seems to be more about trying to extort money from government, corporations or foreigners than anything to do with legal land claims or anything to do with land use.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CanuckBob on Mon Aug 28, 2017 9:29 am

Spencer is dealing with many of the Ejido claims against property owners in upper Ajijic (at the bottom of the mountain) so perhaps he can answer.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 9:56 am

The reason I ask is that there is a long running case before the Mexican Supreme Court to try and resolve a land dispute east of Chapala.  A number of homes were built (by persons not originally from the area including Mexican, US and Canadian nationals) about 15-20 yrs. ago on land that was purchased from a developer.  This is an area extending east from the village of San Juan Tecomatlan along the north side of the Lake. A local group of current and former residents of the small village nearby a few years later laid claim to the land on which some of the houses were built.  They have tried every means they can think of to get more money out of the current property owners resulting in a long running court battle.

Where it currently is at is an examination by the court of what "indigenous" families or descendants of the original families remain in the area.  What they discovered is that there are no records and have gone back to Seville, Spain to see if they can determine who the indigenous were that had control of the land.  It is expected the outcome will be that there remains only a handful of people that remain that may be able to trace their ancestry back to the indigenous people that lived here at the time of the Spanish rule.  Never was an "ejido" organized to self govern the area independent from the State of Jalisco (and its registered municipalities) so a far different land claim case.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:26 am

Ezzie wrote: They have tried every means they can think of to get more money out of the current property owners resulting in a long running court battle.
I'm sorry - but I find this statement more than a little disrespectful. These battles are much more than about money, they are also about community, cultural identity, cultural appropriation, self worth, economic development. These Ejido rights were granted after a long, and bloody revolution, less than 100 years ago. And before the ink and blood was even dry, the schemers and carpetbaggers started to view Ejidos as easy pickings, run by backwards peasants willing to trade their land for a shiny bag of trinkets or a bottle of hooch. I know a very good lawyer in Puerto Vallarta who has made his name with regularizing Ejido properties, but he is a kind, intelligent man, respected and trusted by local Ejidos, there and Nayarit, starting with his father, born in an Ejido, 70 years ago.

Now, over 50% of prime recreational/desirable land in Mexico is in the hands of Ejido, the other 50% belongs to large, corporate conglomerates.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:44 am

I am also sorry if you think that I am being "more than disrespectful". I do agree with you completely about the schemers and carpetbaggers taking advantage of indigenous people. I, however, do not understand the connection you make to these so called "ejido" land claims and atrocities that were committed all over what is now Canada and the US by our colonial forbearers. I am only asking if anyone knows of the existence of any legitimate or "legal" ejidos in this part of Mexico. I am not aware of any Ejido rights being trampled on by developers here. Please enlighten me.

In the case above that I site (in which area I live), I would tell you that my friends and neighbours on both sides of the legal case would say that it is not about "cultural identity, cultural appropriation, self worth & economic development". It is all about the money.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:14 am

I claim no link between ejido lands, native land in the U.S.A, and native lands in Canada - they are all unique and different. The only atrocities in Canada is when they allowed the churches in to destroy traditional language and culture. There were never any "Indian" wars in Canada, as far as I can recall.

There is a large ejido east of Chapala that was illegally appropriated by a major property developer from Guadalajara, and last year the courts ruled decisively in favor of the ejido. I will try to find the article. Even the ejido land, illegally appropriated by the Guadalajara Airport has been legally settled and financial compensation has been ordered. But the airport says "they have no budget for that" - hence, the stalemate. Another big win last years for the ejido near Tenacita, on the coast - the developer had to remove his fences and private security. The Mexican courts are siding with constitutional rights, not bullies with a lot of money.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by slainte39 on Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:25 am

Doesn't Catastro in the Municipio of Poncitlan have records showing what you inquiring about?
How could anyone, lay person, attorney, or government employee/official know this for sure without checking all government records.
I suppose someone could produce possible counterfeit or forged documents, but they would have to stand the scrutiny of thorough inspection.
I thought the problem in S. J. Tecomatlan was that the ejiditario council that "sold" the land to the developer didn't have the proper authority (legal right), supposedly, to do so.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CanuckBob on Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:36 am

I know of two properties at the bottom of the mountain in upper Ajijic with Ejido claims against them. They have been in court for a couple of years now.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by tonyburton on Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:24 pm

Interesting discussion! A few hopefully salient points to bear in mind:
Post-contact land tenure in Mexico is exceedingly complex and I don't pretend to understand it all. However, many communities and groups were given completely legal (at the time) rights to land and resources a very long time before ejidos had ever been thought of. In some cases, they still have the documents to prove it, but their rights have been (often) negated by later documents and court cases. In others, they have no papers to prove it, though such documents may well still be recorded in archives in Spain.
Land ownership became very contentious during the mid-nineteenth and early twentieth century because many, many local archives and records were destroyed during repeated periods of conflict. (Among other impacts, this led to many people having no means of ever finding their original birth certificate, etc.).
I can't speak to the area east of Chapala, but some of the arguments related to land ownership in Ajijic are related in Francisco Talavera Salgado's book "Lago Chapala: Turismo residencial y campesinado" (1982).

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Zea on Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:51 pm

The mountains of Ajijic (from west of San Antonio to the Joco municipality border) were given to the indigenous community of Ajijic in the early '80's by the federal gov't. (That's when it was finalized - the process started in the '70's.) A process like eminent domain was used, but private landowners could sometimes get their land excluded and so the borders to the area are pretty irregular.

My understanding is that the mountains were never ejido land before this happened - that it was private or federal, although there was a lot of ejido land farther to the east (probably east of Chapala).

And although the indigenous community of Ajijic now owns the mountains, the classification of the ownership may not be under the ejido system, but as something else. Don't know.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Zea on Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:54 pm

Interesting, Tony. Would love to read that book. Probably hard to find...

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 1:19 pm

So there are legal "ejidos" operating in this area. I am interested in reading about the court award that was made in favour of the large ejido east of Chapala that Chillin refers to - I had not heard of that court award. Was it in the area of Mezcala or San Pedro? Are you able to find a link to this story and was it really an ejido that was involved?

A majority of the residents of San Juan Tecomatlan voted to "regularize" their lands a couple of years ago so the affected properties were titled and can now be legally sold and developed. The adjacent barrio to the east of San Juan Tecomatlan (called Tlachichilco) used to be part of San Juan but voted to break away and have tried to set up their own authority and control the ownership of the agrarian lands around the village on which there are a number of "foreigner" built homes. They were successful in getting the deeds revoked on some of the homes so those affected properties cannot be sold until the legal battle has been concluded. The Municipality of Poncitlan (in which this village is located) is powerless to assess and collect taxes at this time so the owners only pay property tax on the construction, not the land. The courts have requested information from the old records that are supposedly located in Seville, Spain to see if there is any "indigenous" claim to the lands in that area. To my knowledge, that area of land or that group of residents are not considered by the courts as an "ejido" otherwise this would have been resolved years ago.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 2:01 pm

This is the story I was thinking of -the Cocas. They won the court battle against the developer but thought he might appeal. He had one year, and did not.
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2017/apr/04/the-american-expats-moving-into-the-mexican-riviera-and-breaking-up-indigenous-communities

I have also read other Coca articles which are more militantly phrased - that both Mexicans and Expats want them out.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Clete on Mon Aug 28, 2017 2:36 pm

From reading the above posts I get the idea that the land in question could very possibly be "tierras comunales" or communal property which is a different designation. Communal property is different than ejido property and is governed by a different set of rules. Whereas much ejido property was appropriated and redistributed, communal property was "restored" to the indigenous people who had it taken from them many years prior.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Trailrunner on Mon Aug 28, 2017 2:47 pm

Interesting article, thanks. However, the Huicholes are known as Wixáricas not Wikárikas and I thought they were Cora Indians not Coca. . .
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 3:32 pm

The article cited by CHILLIN I have seen before and has nothing to do with the "foreign" community, development or even ejidos. The headline of the article is "The American expats breaking up indigenous communities on the Mexican 'Riviera' " but the article cites no examples of any Americans or developers who have any interest in the lands near Mezcala. I know of no "expats" that have ever shown any interest in owning property near Mezcala or further east towards San Pedro.

The group cited in the article ("Cocos") cannot make any claim to being recognized by the Federal Government as "indigenous" and as a result any legal claim to lands in the area of Mezcala. The "invader" they cite in the article, Guillermo Moreno Ibarra is not a "foreigner" but is a Mexican National and former employee of the State of Jalisco (I can't recall where he served). And he wasn't a "developer" - he acquired, rightly or wrongly, some land up in the mountains and built a business right on the peak of the mountain overlooking Mezcala. The business employed locals and was producing screened topsoil for sale to nurseries in Guadalajara (it was still there the last time I drove up there - about a year ago).

If you want a true historical perspective of the "indigenous" peoples, languages and customs of the area east of Chapala and along the north shore of the Lake, I would encourage you to speak with Exciquio Santiago 333-184-7952. He is the gentleman that operates the cultural centre (a museum of local artifacts) on the south side of the plaza and conducts tours of Mezcala Island. A truly gifted and wonderful man who has single handedly done so much for his community to preserve the "indigenous" culture of the area and educate the locals about their history. I have spoken with him about this topic and his main concern is the loss of the native culture and history and his life's work is dedicated to preserving it. You can walk up to almost anyone that lives in Mezcala and they have no clue nor interest in their history.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:13 pm

There is also bio reserve land, held in trust, not meant to be developed - ever.

The article says these lands, I guess communal, was awarded in 1971 then again later. Maybe this is a stage before ejido, I am not going to call Puerto Vallarta and pay to find out. Lots of people build on leased ejido land on the coast, they never get to own the property, but their costs are whatever it takes to build and maintain their beachshack - when they are gone, it is gone too. A lot of them find an old fifth wheel, travel trailer, motorhome and build around it, even on top of it. Other times, the land can be negotiated out of Ejido - thats a specialty of my lawyer. This is not for beachshacks, but for major resorts and developments.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Clete on Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:44 pm

This forum could really use a "rolls eyes" feature.

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by gringal on Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:59 pm

Clete wrote:This forum could really use a "rolls eyes" feature.
Rolling Eyes How about that one?

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 5:17 pm

Here you go - a list of Ejidos in Mexico. Five in Chapala alone. Hope you have more fun with this than I did.

http://internet.contenidos.inegi.org.mx/contenidos/productos/prod_serv/contenidos/espanol/bvinegi/productos/historicos/1329/702825116712/702825116712_1.pdf
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 6:39 pm

Based on a census from 1990?? - really. Gee, this is only 27 years ago. Anything more up to date?

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CHILLIN on Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:51 pm

Gracion - the Ejido laws were enacted 100 years ago. There have been changes, mostly less Ejidos - the ones cashing out. No one is creating new Ajidos since 1990. If you want to name and number of my expert, fugget about it, he is far too busy, and would probably charge you double, as his P.I.A. fee. He is a litigator , not a legal scholar.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Lady Otter Latté on Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:55 pm

So, Ezzie, why the obsessive need to know so explicitly about Ejido land? It's getting kind of creepy.
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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by Ezzie on Mon Aug 28, 2017 9:40 pm

Just interested in the topic as I suspect a few other people are that read some of the posts on this forum. There was a link in the article that CHILLIN posted to a paper written by a person called Santiago Bastos at U. of G. in 2011. It is the story of that land dispute in Mezcala that I found a very interesting read.

http://periodicos.unb.br/index.php/repam/article/viewFile/10025/7337

You just can't make this stuff up - would make an interesting feature length movie!!!

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Re: What Land Lakeside is Officially Designated as "Ejido" Land?

Post by CanuckBob on Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:56 am

I wouldn't get involved in any land that is even close to having ejido ties to it. Even after things are resolved others come out of the woodwork and throw more claims against it. I wouldn't get involved with the Native American lands up north either......

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