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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Lawyers for Utah's 7,500 Navajos say they're close to settling a lawsuit alleging Utah failed to properly manage a trust fund that collects royalties on reservation oil wells.
Settlement talks have been active since a federal judge appointed a mediator in June.
Brian Barnard, one of the Navajo's lawyers, sketched the broad outlines of a possible settlement last weekend in a visit to the reservation. He says Navajos are eager to put the 17-year-old case behind them. It's holding up payments from the trust fund.
Assistant Utah Attorney General Phil Lott confirmed negotiations were ongoing but refused to characterize them.
Word of a possible settlement in Utah came as Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced a $3.4 billion proposed settlement in a similar national case on Tuesday.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)