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Inventories

Under NAGPRA, inventories of Native American human remains and associated funerary objects “shall be . . . completed in consultation with tribal government and Native Hawaiian organization officials and traditional religious leaders.” Museum and Federal agency officials must initiate consultation on the human remains and associated funerary objects with any lineal descendants; representatives of Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations that are, or are likely to be, culturally affiliated with the remains and objects; “tribal land” Indian tribes; and “aboriginal land” Indian tribes. If the initiation of consultation does not ultimately lead to a determination of cultural affiliation or lineal descent, then the human remains and associated funerary objects in question are deemed to be “culturally unidentifiable.” In 2014, at the request of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Review Committee, the National NAGPRA Program compiled a report identifying the museums and Federal agency units whose inventories of culturally unidentifiable Native American human remains and associated funerary objects contain no information indicating that consultation on any of the individuals in the inventory was ever initiated, based on information in the Program’s inventory database. In this webinar, the National NAGPRA Program will walk participants through the steps for the museums and Federal agency units included in the report. Representatives of the museums and Federal agency units listed in the report are encouraged to attend, as well as NAGPRA staff for Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations who might be consulting parties on the affected human remains.
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program staff

Under the inventory provisions of NAGPRA, “if the cultural affiliation of any particular Native American human remains or associated funerary objects is determined . . . the Federal agency or museum concerned shall . . . notify the affected Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations . . . A copy of each notice [referenced above] shall be sent to the Secretary [of the Interior, or a designee], who shall publish each notice in the Federal Register.” Thus, the publication of a notice of inventory completion for culturally affiliated human remains and associated funerary objects is not dependent on the museum or Federal agency receiving a repatriation request. In 2014, at the request of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Review Committee, the National NAGPRA Program compiled a report identifying the museums and Federal agencies whose culturally affiliated inventories include human remains that are not yet represented in notices of inventory completion, based on information in the Program’s inventory database. In this webinar, the National NAGPRA Program will walk participants through the steps for museums and Federal agency units in order to resolve the number of identified individuals in culturally affiliated inventories that have not been included in notices. Representatives of the museums and Federal agencies listed in the report (which is accessible through a link on the Program’s homepage, at https://www.nps.gov/nagpra) are encouraged to attend, as well as NAGPRA staff for Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations that are culturally affiliated with the identified individuals. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program staff

Museums and Federal agencies are responsible for keeping their inventories and summaries up to date, be it under the provisions of 43 C.F.R. 10.13 (Future applicability), or as a result of initiating consultation with additional parties or re-determining the affiliation of cultural items. The National NAGPRA Program often is asked how, as a practical matter, the museum or Federal agency updates or amends its inventory or summary. This short webinar explains what to do. Click here to download the presentation
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program staff

Under NAGPRA, Federal agencies and museums must complete inventories and summaries for the Native American human remains, funerary objects, scared objects, and objects of cultural patrimony under their control, and must submit these documents to Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations, as appropriate, as well as to the National NAGPRA Program. Inventories and summaries form the basis for Notices of Inventory Completion and Notices of Intent to Repatriate Cultural Items. Publication of notices in the Federal Register, in turn, satisfies the process required in order for the disposition of such human remains and cultural items to occur. Inventories and summaries, thus, are directly linked to notices. Yet, while they share similar content, inventories and summaries are neither identical to nor interchangeable with notices. In this webinar, we will examine the NAGPRA inventory -- its form and purpose -- and demonstrate how to navigate the National NAGPRA Program's Inventory Database. Then, with a thorough understanding of inventories, we will examine the notice format, demonstrate how to prepare a conforming notice from an inventory, and explain the process of getting a notice to publication in the Federal Register. Similarly, we will spend some time looking at the connections between NAGPRA summaries and Notices of Intent to Repatriate. This webinar is especially targeted at NAGPRA practitioners whose responsibilities include the completion of inventories and summaries, and Federal Register notices. Time will be allocated for discussion and questions; however, participants are encouraged to send their questions at the time they register for the webinar.
Presenters: Mariah Soriano, National NAGPRA Program; and Alayna Rasile, Contractor, National NAGPRA Program

The Final Rule became effective May 14, 2010. Review the key elements of the CUI Rule. The webinar will be an opportunity for tribal, museum and federal agency officials as well as interested members of the public to review the CUI Rule with NAGPRA staff and attorneys and ask questions regarding its implementation. Time will be allocated for discussion and questions, however, participants are encouraged to send in any questions they have about the CUI Rule when they register.
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program staff

Notices

In this webinar, NAGPRA notices, including Notices of Inventory Completion (and the similarities and differences between culturally affiliated and culturally unidentifiable notices) and Notices of Intent to Repatriate Cultural Items, will be explained in detail. In addition, Notices of Intended Disposition, Summaries and Inventories will be briefly discussed. New notice templates will be explored, and will be available for downloading during the presentation. This webinar is designed for Federal agency and museum staff working on NAGPRA compliance issues, and NAGPRA practitioners interested in better understanding the notice process. This forum seeks to thoughtfully consider your questions, so please include them along with your registration. Prior to attending this webinar, we highly recommend that you view the "NAGPRA Notices" segment of the NAGPRA Training Videos. The entire video series is posted on the National NAGPRA YouTube Channel, and is available on demand. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenter: Melanie O'Brien, Notice Coordinator, National NAGPRA Program
Under NAGPRA, museums and Federal agency officials must consult with Indian tribes from whose aboriginal land human remains and other cultural items were removed. With respect to discoveries on Federal lands after November 16, 1990, aboriginal occupation may be recognized by a final judgment of the Indian Claims Commission or the United States Court of Claims. With respect to holdings or collections, aboriginal occupation may be recognized by a final judgment of the Indian Claims Commission or the United States Court of Claims or, in addition, by a treaty, Act of Congress, or Executive Order. This webinar will demonstrate how to go about identifying "aboriginal land" tribes under NAGPRA. In order to ensure that this forum thoughtfully considers your queries, please include your questions along with your registration. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters: Melanie O'Brien, Notice Coordinator, National NAGPRA Program; Stephen Simpson, Senior Attorney, Office of the Solicitor, Division of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior; and Karen Wurzburger, Cultural Anthropologist, Office of Indian Affairs and American Culture, Intermountain Region, National Park Service

Open Forum

Some museums, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations are especially prone to relatively frequent turnover in NAGPRA staffs. This webinar is for new NAGPRA staff to ask basic questions about NAGPRA. Before attending this webinar, participants who have not already done so should watch the 3-hour, two-part NAGPRA Basics training through a link on the Program’s “Training” page, and available on demand courtesy of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. NAGPRA Basics covers the background of NAGPRA, the consultation and decision making process, notices, grants, and civil penalties. Both new and veteran NAGPRA practitioners have found this training to be helpful in their work. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program and Office of the Solicitor, Department of the Interior
Do you have a question you would like to ask National NAGPRA Program staff or the Office of the Solicitor? Do you seek clarification of a NAGPRA issue? This webinar provides you with an opportunity to have your concerns addressed. In order to thoughtfully consider your questions, please include them along with your registration. Also, please note, the Office of Solicitor may address general legal issues, but cannot provide specific legal advice to participants.
Do you have a specific question you would like to ask National NAGPRA Program staff or legal counsel? Do you seek clarification of a particular NAGPRA issue? This webinar provides you with an opportunity to hear about any new developments in the National NAGPRA Program, and to have your questions or concerns addressed. In order to ensure that this forum thoughtfully considers your queries, please include your questions along with your registration

Do you have a specific question you would like to ask National NAGPRA Program staff or legal counsel? Do you seek clarification of a particular NAGPRA issue? This webinar provides you with an opportunity to hear about any new developments in the National NAGPRA Program, and to have your questions or concerns addressed. In order to ensure that this forum thoughtfully considers your queries, please include your questions along with your registration. Registration deadline is April 9.
Have a burning question you would like to ask the NAGPRA staff? Need clarification on a particular NAGPRA topic? This webinar is an opportunity to hear about the latest developments at the National NAGPRA Program and to have staff answer questions or concerns you may have. In order to ensure that this forum adequately addresses your question or concerns, please include your questions along with your registration.
Have a burning question you would like to ask the NAGPRA staff? Need clarification on a particular NAGPRA topic? This webinar is a chance to hear from NAGPRA staff on the latest developments at the National NAGPRA Program and to answer questions or concerns you may have. In order to ensure that this forum adequately addresses your question or concerns, please include any questions you may have with your registration.

Repatriation

In recent years, Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations have been actively pursuing the repatriation of ancestors and cultural items situated in foreign repositories. In some cases, NAGPRA has been used to effect their return, but most often, consultation and negotiation were conducted outside the scope of NAGPRA. This webinar has three parts. In the first segment, participants will develop an understanding of the extent to which NAGPRA applies to human remains and cultural items in the physical custody of a foreign repository. Next, they will hear first-hand from Indian tribe and Native Hawaiian organization practitioners about their repatriation work with foreign institutions. These presenters will provide insights into best practices in international repatriation learned during the course of their work. Topics to be covered during this segment will include: locating human remains and cultural items in foreign repositories; cultivating working relationships with foreign institutions; and negotiating the terms and logistics of repatriation across international borders. The last segment will be devoted to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The Declaration and its relevance for international repatriation will be discussed, and participants will learn about the current review by the United States of its position on the Declaration, and the role that they can play in that review.
Presenters: Shannon Keller O’Loughlin, Attorney for Indian Nations; Honor Keller; David Tarler, Training, NAGPRA Compliance, and Designated Federal Officer to the Review Committee
What do tribes need to consider when starting a NAGPRA repatriation program? In this webinar, we will review the various elements including staff, equipment, volunteers, training and other resources needed to start and maintain a successful repatriation program. In addition, Eric Hemenway will share strategies for collaboration, working with museums and gaining commitment from a tribe's leadership. This webinar is designed for both newcomers to NAGPRA as well as staff that have been working with established repatriation programs. We welcome participants to share best practices, tips and other insights into what makes a successful program. Presented by Sangita Chari, Grants Coordinator, National NAGPRA Program, and Eric Hemenway, NAGPRA Specialist, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians.

Review Committee


David Tarler, Designated Federal Officer to the Review Committee, and current Review Committee members - Sonya Atalay and Dan Monroe - will explain the role of the Review Committee. Participants will gain a better understanding of reasons for the creation of the Review Committee, its role, how members are selected and what types of issues they address. In addition, participants will learn how to utilize the Review Committee to support their NAGPRA work.

Section 3

Section 3 of NAGPRA identifies who shall have ownership or control of cultural items removed from Federal or tribal lands after November 16, 1990. The NAGPRA regulations (43 CFR 10.6) provide guidance on the disposition of those cultural items to the appropriate lineal descendant, or Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization. If no potential Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization claimant can be identified, or if no identified potential Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization claimant makes a claim pursuant to those regulations, then the cultural items in question are “unclaimed.” In Section 3 of the Act, Congress explicitly authorized the Secretary of the Interior to promulgate regulations for the disposition of unclaimed cultural items. On November 5, 2015, a final rule concerning the disposition of unclaimed human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, or objects of cultural patrimony was published in the Federal Register, and became effective on December 7. This webinar walks participants through the provisions of the rule, and offers templates for Federal agencies to report unclaimed cultural items to the National NAGPRA Program and to publish notices of proposed transfer of cultural items, or reinterment of human remains or funerary objects. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters: National NAGPRA Program and Office of the Solicitor, Department of the Interior
Section 3 of NAGPRA (25 U.S.C. § 3002) addresses the disposition of human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony found on Federal and tribal lands after November 16, 1990. If discovered on tribal land, the excavation or removal of human remains and cultural items requires the consent of the Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization on whose tribal land the discovery is made, and ownership or control of the remains and cultural items is in the tribe or NHO (where a lineal descendant of human remains and associated funerary objects cannot be ascertained). What is tribal land under NAGPRA? How does the excavating party know with whom to consult? What is the NAGPRA compliance process? These questions and more will be the focus of this webinar. Time will be allocated for discussion and questions, however, participants are encouraged to send in any questions they have when they register.
Presenters: Marvin Keller, Archaeologist/FPO/ NEPA Coordinator, IA-DECRM, Indian Affairs; Annie Pardo, Museum Program Manager/National Curator/NAGPRA Coordinator, Indian Affairs; and Stephen Simpson, Senior Attorney, Office of the Solicitor, Division of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior
Since November 16, 1990, whenever a project carried out, approved, or funded by a Federal agency is to occur on Federal land or tribal land, both Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA, 16 U.S.C. 470f) and Section 3 of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3002) are implicated. Under NHPA Section 106, if the project has the potential to affect historic properties on tribal land, or historic properties of significance to one or more Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations on Federal land, then prior to beginning the project, the Federal agency must consult with officials of the appropriate Native Hawaiian organization(s) or federally recognized Indian tribe(s) on measures to avoid or reduce harm to the historic properties in the area of potential effect. Successful completion of Section 106 review, though, is no guarantee that the project may proceed uninterrupted, for Section 3 of NAGPRA will temporarily halt the project if Native American human remains or other cultural items are discovered and no plan is in place that addresses their excavation or removal, and disposition. Instead of putting such a project at risk of being suspended for lack of a plan to address its NAGPRA responsibilities, one course of action for the Federal agency would be to conduct consultation with (or, in the case of tribal lands, obtain the consent of) the appropriate Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization on a contingency plan ("Plan of Action") to address the excavation or removal, and disposition of any NAGPRA cultural items discovered during the project. In this webinar, the presenters will briefly review NHPA Section 106 and NAGPRA Section 3 responsibilities; explain why Federal agencies might wish to integrate NAGPRA Section 3 contingency planning in their NHPA Section 106 review; and demonstrate how, as a practical matter, this work may be accomplished.
Presenters: Valerie Hauser, Director, Office of Native American Affairs, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; and Chuck Smythe, Ethnography Program Manager, Northeast Region, National Park Service

State Protocols and NAGPRA

Under NAGPRA, any institution that “receives Federal funds” and has “possession” or “control” of “cultural items” must comply with the requirements of this law. State and local government institutions might not be aware that when State or local law gives them the authority to take discretionary actions with respect to NAGPRA cultural items, they have an interest in the cultural items sufficient to permit them to lawfully treat the human remains as part of a holding or collection for purposes of NAGPRA and its implementing regulations. This webinar will review the responsibility of State and local government institutions for complying with NAGPRA when applicable laws confer on them the authority to dispose of cultural items. Assistant State Attorneys General, City and County Attorneys, and State Historic Preservation Office staff whose responsibilities include NAGPRA compliance are encouraged to attend. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters: Office of the Solicitor, Department of the Interior and National NAGPRA Program
Discoveries of Native American human remains and other NAGPRA cultural items on state and private land are governed by state law. However, if the state takes possession or control of these discoveries pursuant to state law, these items are considered new collections, subject to Sections 5, 6, and 7 of NAGPRA. These items are also subject to 43 CFR 10.13, the section of the regulations that address the continuing duty to comply with NAGPRA. To navigate the intersection of state and Federal law, states may develop NAGPRA protocols to tailor the process for that state. Proposed state protocols may be presented to the NAGPRA Review Committee for their advice and recommendations, which are forwarded to the Secretary of Interior. A state protocol approved by the Secretary of Interior clarifies the process of complying with both state and Federal law for purposes of NAGPRA. To date, only Colorado and Iowa have NAGPRA state protocols. It may be advantageous for other states to develop these as well. In this webinar the advantages, development, approval, and implementation of state protocols will be discussed.Click here to start recorded webinar.
Presenters: Bridget Ambler of History Colorado worked on the Colorado NAGPRA Protocol. Sheila Goff of History Colorado is responsible for implementing the Colorado NAGPRA Protocol. Carla Mattix, attorney-advisor in the Department of the Interior, advises the NAGPRA Review Committee, and reviews the protocols submitted to the Secretary of Interior.

Other Topics

The Michigan Anishinaabek Cultural Preservation & Repatriation Alliance (MACPRA) consists of eleven federally recognized Indian tribes and two nonfederally recognized Indian groups from the State of Michigan. It was established in 2000, after a consensus agreement was signed by all the Indian tribes resident in Michigan authorizing each Alliance tribe to act as agent for all the tribes on repatriation issues, on the understanding that all the Native American people of Michigan are culturally affiliated to each other. In the words of the consensus statement, “[i]t is the unanimous desire of the Native American people of Michigan (Anishinaabeg) that these [NAGPRA cultural] items be returned as quickly as possible to a Repatriation Designee of any of the undersigned tribes.” In this webinar, the Chair of MACPRA will discuss the work of the Alliance in facilitating consultation on, and the repatriation/disposition of, Native American human remains/cultural items from Michigan and, together with museum NAGPRA staff, will describe their experiences with the NAGPRA compliance process. Click here to start the recorded webinar.
Presenters/Hosts: William Johnson, Chairman, MACPRA; Ben Secunda, NAGPRA Project Manager, Office of Research, University of Michigan; Amadeaus Scott, NAGPRA Collections Manager, Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, University of Michigan
Under NAGPRA, museums are defined as any institution or state or local government agency (including any institution of higher learning) that receives Federal funds and has possession of, or control over, Native American cultural items. In this webinar we will review the obligations of museums under NAGPRA, with an emphasis on policies and procedures, consultation, and the NAGPRA notice process. In addition, we will review NAGPRA civil penalties and discuss strategies and best practices for ensuring compliance with NAGPRA. Participants are strongly encouraged to share strategies and tips for success.

Presenters:
Jan Bernstein, President, Bernstein & Assoc.
Sangita Chari, NAGPRA Grants Coordinator
Jaime Lavallee, NAGPRA Notices Coordinator
Bob Palmer, NAGPRA Civil Penalties Investigator

Grants

Section 10 of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to make grants to museums, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations to assist the process leading to repatriation/disposition of Native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony. Management of the Secretary's responsibilities for NAGPRA grants is carried out by the National NAGPRA Program. Two types of grants are offered -- Consultation/Documentation grants and Repatriation grants. Consultation/Documentation grants are project-based grants that support the efforts of museums, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations to consult on and document human remains and cultural items. These grants are competitive. Repatriation grants are noncompetitive awards that defray costs associated with the transfer of possession of human remains and cultural items (such as packaging, transportation, contamination removal, reburial, or storage). In this webinar, you will learn about NAGPRA grants, review the FY 2014 Consultation/Documentation grant application, identify fundable projects, and hear the perspectives of Grants Panel reviewers and a veteran successful grant writer on crafting a successful NAGPRA grant application. This forum seeks to thoughtfully consider your questions, so please include them along with your registration. Click here to start the recorded webinar.

Presenters: Jan Bernstein, Managing Director, Bernstein & Associates, LLC; Sherry Hutt, Manager, National NAGPRA Program; Thomas Cullerton, Grants Management Specialist, National NAGPRA Program; Reid Nelson, Director, Office of Federal Agency Programs, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; and Jill Norwood, Community Services Specialist, National Museum of the American Indian, The Smithsonian Institution
Section 10 of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to make grants to museums, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations for the purposes of assisting in consultation, documentation, and repatriation of Native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony. The National NAGPRA Program offers two types of grants -- Consultation/Documentation grants and Repatriation grants. Consultation/Documentation grants are project-based grants that support the efforts of museums, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations to consult on and document human remains and cultural items. These grants are competitive; the maximum allowable award is $90,000. Repatriation grants are non-competitive awards for up to $15,000. These awards defray costs associated with the packaging, transportation, contamination removal, reburial, and/or storage of human remains and/or cultural items. In this webinar you will learn more about the NAGPRA Grants program, review the FY 2012 Consultation/Documentation grant application, and find out about new resources available on the NAGPRA Program’s website to assist you in preparing your grant request.
Presenters: Sangita Chari, NAGPRA Grants Coordinator, National NAGPRA Program; and Kelsea Raether, Intern, National NAGPRA Program

Last updated: October 6, 2021