614 FW 1, Policy, Responsibilities and Definitions 

FWM#:    052 (new)
Date:        November 18, 1992
Series:      Natural and Cultural Resources Management
Part 614:  Cultural Resources Management
Originating Office:  Division of Refuges 

1.1 Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to state the policy and establish standards for compliance with legal requirements and management of cultural resources for lands, facilities, and programs administered by the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service).

1.2 Objectives. The objectives for managing cultural resources are to:

A. Protect, maintain, and plan for the use of Service managed cultural resources for the benefit of present and future generations.

B. Provide a good example of how to maintain and preserve unique cultural resources while meeting the Service's on-going natural resource and wildlife responsibilities.

C. Identify, evaluate the importance of, and seek the appropriate protective designation of cultural resources in accordance with existing legal requirements, regulations, and professional standards.

D. Exercise caution that cultural resources are not inadvertently transferred, sold, demolished, or substantially altered as a result of Service sanctioned activities until appropriate identification, evaluation, and planning are accomplished.

E. Avoid damage and deterioration to cultural resources that would result from erosion, abandonment, or benign neglect.

F. Encourage and enhance educational, interpretive, and research opportunities for Service managed cultural resources consistent with the overall management objectives of the Service.

1.3 Scope. As used in this chapter, cultural resources include archaeological resources, historic and architectural properties, and areas or sites of traditional or religious significance to Native Americans.

1.4 Policy. It is the policy of the Service to identify, protect, and manage cultural resources located on Service lands and affected by Service undertakings, in a spirit of stewardship, for future generations. Specifically, the Service will:

A. Manage these resources in such a manner that sites, buildings, structures, objects, and values of importance are sufficiently protected for present or future scientific study, public appreciation, and socio-cultural use.

B. Ensure that during the appropriate stages of decisionmaking for Service administered or assisted activities such as construction projects, land use or resource planning, real property acquisition or disposal, and grants and technical assistance to States, full consideration is given to protecting cultural resources consistent with Federal statutes, regulations, and policies.

1.5 Authorities.

A. Antiquities Act (16 U.S.C. 431-433). This Act authorizes the scientific investigation of antiquities on Federal land, subject to the stipulations outlined in permits issued to recognized educational, scientific, and other institutions for the purposes of systematically gathering data. The Act provides that objects taken or collected without a permit may result in a fine and imprisonment of the convicted person.

B. Historic Sites, Buildings and Antiquities Act (16 U.S.C. 461-467). This Act establishes as national policy the preservation of nationally significant historic and archaeological properties through the National Historic Landmarks program.

C. National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (16 U.S.C. 470-470t). This Act establishes as policy that the Federal Government is to provide leadership in the preservation of the Nation's prehistoric and historic resources. Historic preservation is defined in the Act as the protection, rehabilitation, restoration, and reconstruction of sites, buildings, structures, and objects significant in American history, architecture, engineering, and archaeology.

Sections 106 and 110 of the Act define the primary requirements for Federal agencies to follow in identifying, evaluating, and protecting significant cultural resources.

D. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321-4347). This Act establishes the Federal policy of protecting important historic, cultural, and natural aspects of our national heritage during Federal project planning and obligates Federal agencies to consider the environmental consequences and costs of their projects and programs as part of the planning process. All Federal or federally assisted projects requiring action pursuant to Section 102 of the Act must take into account the effects on cultural resources.

E. Archeological and Historic Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 469-469c). This Act directs the preservation of historic and archaeological data in Federal construction projects. The Act authorizes Federal agencies to seek future appropriations, to obligate available funding, or to reprogram existing appropriations to provide for the identification and preservation of data.

F. American Indian Religious Freedom Act (P.L. 95-341). This joint resolution of Congress establishes as the policy of the United States the protection and preservation for American Indians of their inherent right of freedom to believe, express, and practice their traditional religions. The Act directs agencies to consult with native traditional religious leaders to determine appropriate policy changes necessary to protect and preserve Native American religious cultural rights and practices.

G. Archaeological Resources Protection Act, as amended (16 U.S.C. 470aa-470mm). This Act protects materials of archaeological interest that are greater than 100 years old on public and Indian lands from unauthorized removal or destruction and requires that Federal managers develop plans and schedules to locate the most scientifically important archaeological sites. The Act allows the Federal land manager to issue permits for the excavation or recovery of archaeological resources. Individuals who destroy, deface, or remove archaeological resources from Federal lands are subject to severe penalties and fines under the Act's provisions.

H. Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (25 U.S.C. 3001-3013). This Act requires Federal agencies and museums to inventory, determine ownership of, and repatriate cultural items under their control or possession, as determined by the Act and its implementing regulations. Federal agencies are required to determine the cultural affiliation of cultural items in their possession or under their control and return those items to the appropriate tribe, organization, or individual, upon request. The Act's requirements address the repatriation of cultural items under the control of or in the possession of the Federal agency and those inadvertently discovered by construction activities on lands managed by the agency.

I. Protection of Historic and Cultural Properties (36 CFR 800). These regulations establish procedures for the identification and protection of historic properties under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended. The process requires that Federal agencies consider appropriate alternatives to avoid or mitigate adverse effects on National Register listed or eligible properties during the planning of undertakings.

J. Curation of Federally-Owned and Administered Archeological Collections (36 CFR 79). These regulations require that archaeological materials collected by or in the possession of Federal agencies under the Antiquities Act, the Archaeological Resources Protection Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act be adequately curated and protected.

K. Protection of Archaeological Resources (43 CFR 7). These regulations require the authorization of the appropriate Federal manager to excavate or remove archaeological resources from Federal and Indian lands, and also require that collected archaeological resources be curated in a suitable facility that meets professional standards for long-term care.

1.6 Responsibilities.

A. The Secretary of the Interior is responsible for providing overall cultural resource management direction, technical review and advice, and performing the functions necessary to execute the policies prescribed in the National Historic Preservation Act, the Archaeological Resources Protection Act, the Antiquities Act, and other historic preservation statutes.

B. The Director is responsible for the identification and protection of cultural resources affected by Service undertakings or on lands under Service jurisdiction. The Director is responsible for the Service's overall compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act and the applicable provisions of other statutes, regulations, and standards referenced above.

C. The Assistant Director - Refuges and Wildlife is responsible for oversight and implementation of the Service's cultural resource program. The Assistant Director is authorized to approve and promulgate the Cultural Resource Management Handbook (614 FW) for Service employees involved with managing cultural resources.

D. The Fish and Wildlife Service Preservation Officer (Federal Preservation Officer) is the designated qualified official who provides advice to the Director and furnishes assistance to and coordinates with the Regional Directors in carrying out Service cultural resource management requirements and policies. The Federal Preservation Officer must satisfactorily complete an appropriate training program as established by the Secretary under Section 101(g) of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended. The Federal Preservation Officer is responsible for:

(1) Fulfilling the Service's coordination duties under Section 110(c) of the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended;

(2) Coordinating Service cultural resource activities at the national level with other appropriate Federal and State agencies and organizations; and

(3) Developing Servicewide cultural resource policy and guidance.

E. The Service Archaeologist is a qualified professional responsible for providing advice and technical assistance to the Director, Assistant Director - Refuges and Wildlife, and the Federal Preservation Officer (if a different position) on Service cultural resource management standards and guidance; budget formulation; and issues involving the inventory, evaluation, protection, and curation of cultural resources. The Service Archaeologist provides technical assistance to Regional Offices and project leaders upon request and coordinates the development and Servicewide implementation of cultural resource requirements in cooperation with the National Park Service, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and other agencies.

F. All Regional Directors are responsible for ensuring that proposed and existing Service activities are administered according to the provisions of appropriate statutes and regulations. While certain decision-making responsibilities may be delegated to other parties, overall responsibility for meeting legal requirements cannot be delegated to non-Service entities. The Regional Director is the signatory official to memoranda of agreement and official interagency correspondence related to compliance with 36 CFR 800, unless specifically delegated. The Regional Director also is responsible for issuing permits under the Archaeological Resources Protection Act and the Antiquities Act for work on lands under the Service's jurisdiction.

G. The Regional Historic Preservation Officer is responsible for providing advice to the Regional Director and directly overseeing cultural resource projects within the Region. The Regional Historic Preservation Officer must satisfactorily complete an appropriate training program as established by the Secretary of the Interior under Section 101(g) of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended. The Regional Historic Preservation Officer is the project leader's primary point of contact for professional advice and technical assistance on cultural resource management activities and for formal consultations with State Historic Preservation Officers and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation for activities within the Region.

H. The Regional Archaeologist/Historian is a qualified professional responsible for providing advice and technical assistance to the Regional Director, the Regional Historic Preservation Officer (if a different position), and project leaders on cultural resource activities involving survey design and scheduling, evaluation of cultural resources, mitigation and data recovery, protective measures, curation of artifacts, and other issues.

I. All Project Leaders are responsible for ensuring that cultural resources on Service lands and facilities or affected by Service undertakings are appropriately preserved, protected, and given consideration to the fullest extent possible within the primary management objectives of each Service field office, research facility, or program. In fulfilling this responsibility, a project leader should always consult with the Regional Historic Preservation Officer. Project leaders are expected to report the occurrence of cultural resources to and seek the advice of Regional Historic Preservation Officers as to proper protection and treatment.

The primary responsibilities of the project leader are to:

(1) Enforce laws and regulations to assure the protection of cultural resources;

(2) Report violations of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act and the Antiquities Act to appropriate Service law enforcement personnel for investigation;

(3) Report the identification of cultural resources to the Regional Historic Preservation Officer when found;

(4) Report maintenance, stabilization, and protection needs for cultural resources to the Regional Office; and incorporate these needs into the Service's budgetary and land use planning processes;

(5) Notify the Regional Historic Preservation Officer during the earliest possible planning stage of any project;

(6) Notify the Regional Historic Preservation Officer of any planned projects to modify, demolish, restore, divest, or lease buildings, bridges, and other structures;

(7) Refer all requests for research, investigation, excavation, or removal of cultural resources to the Regional Historic Preservation Officer;

(8) Issue Special Use Permits, as appropriate, with the advice of the Regional Historic Preservation Officer, to recipients of approved permits for cultural resource studies and research;

(9) Respond to requests for information on cultural resource activities from the Regional Office to meet legislative reporting requirements; and

(10) Regulate visitor use on and affecting sensitive cultural resources.

1.7 Definitions.

A. Advisory Council. The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation was created by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 to serve as the primary policy adviser to the President and Congress on issues in the field of historic preservation. The Council is empowered to review and comment on Federal or federally assisted undertakings.

B. Consultation. The act of formally seeking advice or conferring with the Advisory Council and appropriate State Historic Preservation Officer, as described in 36 CFR 800.

C. Cultural Resources include:

(1) Archaeological Resource. Any material remains of past human life or activity greater than 100 years old which are of archaeological interest as defined by Section 4(a) of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act and 43 CFR Part 7.3.

(2) Historic Property. Any prehistoric or historic district, site, building, structure, or object included in, or eligible for inclusion in, the National Register of Historic Places. This includes artifacts, records, and remains that are related to and located within such properties. As a general guideline, a cultural resource should be at least 50 years old to be considered as a historic property.

(3) Object of Antiquity. Any object of historic or archaeological interest protected by the Antiquities Act of 1906 and 43 CFR Part 3.

(4) Cultural Item. Any Native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony that can be reasonably associated with an Indian tribe, Native Hawaiian organization, or individual descendants of Native Americans, as defined by the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990 and its implementing regulations.

(5) Traditional/Religious Values. Places or resources that are deemed to be important and integral to maintaining a Native American tribal group's traditional culture or religion. Traditional cultural values may not be necessarily associated with easily definable sites or objects, such as is the case with mountain peaks or landscapes that may be considered sacred by Native American tribal groups.

D. Cultural Resource Management Plan. An approved management document that specifies a long-term program for administering important cultural resources that are in need of major protection and maintenance.

E. Cultural Resource Overview. A comprehensive document prepared for a field office that discusses, among other things, its prehistory and cultural history, the nature and extent of known cultural resources, previous research, management objectives, resource management conflicts or issues, and a general statement on how program objectives should be met and conflicts resolved. An overview should reference or incorporate information from a field office's background or literature search described in Section VIII. of the Cultural Resource Management Handbook.

F. Effect. The extent of an undertaking's impact, whether direct or indirect, on an historic property as determined by the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's regulatory process described in 36 CFR Part 800. Effects on historic properties can be determined to be adverse, not adverse, or positive.

G. Inventory. A professionally conducted study designed to locate and evaluate evidence of cultural resources present within a defined geographic area. Inventories may involve various levels, including background literature search, comprehensive field examination to identify all exposed physical manifestations of cultural resources, or sample inventory to project site distribution and density over a larger area. Evaluation of identified cultural resources to determine eligibility for the National Register follows the criteria found in 36 CFR 60.4.

H. Mitigation. Those actions that will be taken to avoid, reduce, or ameliorate possible or probable adverse effects on a cultural resource, such as data retrieval, recordation, or measures designed to avoid adverse effects.

I. National Register. The National Register of Historic Places is maintained by the National Park Service for the Secretary of the Interior under the authority of Section 101(a)(1) of the National Historic Preservation Act. It is a register of districts, buildings, structures, and objects having national, State, or local significance in American history, architecture, archaeology, and culture.

J. National Historic Landmark. A site, district, building, structure, or object, in public or private ownership, judged by the Secretary of the Interior to possess national significance in American history, archaeology, architecture, engineering, or culture according to criteria defined in 36 CFR 65.

K. Qualified Professional. An individual who meets the applicable minimum professional qualifications standards described in:

(1) The Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation which states general qualifications required to perform identification, evaluation, registration, and treatment of cultural resources; or

(2) 43 CFR 7.8 for the excavation and removal of archaeological resources; or

(3) 36 CFR 79 for the curation of cultural resources.

L. State Historic Preservation Officer. The State official, as defined in 36 CFR 60, responsible for liaison with Federal agencies in implementing the appropriate provisions of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended. The State Historic Preservation Officer is an essential part of the consultation process regarding the effects of Service undertakings on historic properties.

M. Undertaking. Any Federal, federally assisted, or federally licensed project, activity, or program that can result in changes in the character or use of known or unknown historic properties, if any such properties are located in the area of potential effects. These may include new and continuing projects, activities, or programs and any of their elements not previously considered under the provisions of 36 CFR 800.

1.8 Additional Guidance. Copies of the Service's Cultural Resource Management Handbook can be obtained from the Federal Preservation Officer, Washington D.C., or the appropriate Regional Historic Preservation Officer. A copy of the Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation is included in the Service Cultural Resource Management Handbook.

For additional information regarding this Web page, contact Krista Bibb, in the Division of Policy and Directives Management, at Krista_Bibb@fws.gov  

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