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How to include shared html in a sharepoint 2010 page

I know we should be doing this another way... IE, using Sharepoint's built-in navigation, but the powers that be want custom nav.  I'm so ignorant about Sharepoint that I don't even know what search terms to google!  So...

I am working on side navigation that's separate from top nav (that does use built-in sp nav). Top Nav has 6 sections. For each section above, there are 10 or so pages that all share the same side nav code.

The page layouts for each of the content pages have a RichHtmlField that we dump static html into for building the navigation. Instead of pasting a chunk of html into every page for every section (60ish pages) and the future hassle of editing each page when the menu changes, I'd like to populate this nav area with html from a single source for each section. Each chunk of code could come from a list or file. So there's be 6 files or 6 list items. Each holds the nav for the 10 pages of a section.

IE, All of section 1's pages would populate their nav section with section 1 nav html. All of section 2's pages would get section 2 nav html, etc.

I tried adding an iFrame pointing to a file for each section, but when the page loads, IE tries to download the html file instead of displaying it.

In the end, I want users to be able to edit each page, set the source file name or list record to grab the html nav code from and be done. Later, if the nav for a section changes, I modify the pertinent list item or file and boom, the nav for 10 pages is updated and we're done.

In other web publishing engines it's easy. In ColdFusion, just do a cfinclude.
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BTW, this is using the Publishing Site, if that makes a difference.

You have the option to use Custom navigation with built in SharePoint.

When you go to a site collections site setting > Navigation  you will see the menus options.  The Top Nav bar is Global and the left side navigation is called Quick Launch.

You can add heading and links to both of them and then move them up or down as you need.

If you create a heading and leave out a url then you can create a link beneath it!  To create a sub item.

You can do the same with pages, create a page, and the move it under a heading.
Thanks for the input... One of the requirements is that the left nav hilites the currently selected page in the nav list. Does the built-in navigation do this?

IE, if the left nav looks like this:
Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4

and the user selected page 3, the Page 3 item in the nav would be colored Orange instead of black.

Does not do it by default, but you can edit the tag for css style as well to make it do that!
How would CSS know which page is loaded and so which menu item to hilite?
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