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ACHP Office of Native American Affairs

The Office of Native American Affairs (ONAA), established in 1998, oversees the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation’s (ACHP’s) Native American initiatives. ONAA staff also works closely with the ACHP’s tribal/Native Hawaiian member to address critical issues brought to the ACHP by Indian tribes, Native Hawaiian organizations (NHOs), and intertribal organizations.

ONAA’s primary responsibilities are:

  • Advise the ACHP chairman, members, and executive director on policy matters and historic preservation issues affecting Indian tribes and NHOs;
  • Provide technical assistance and outreach regarding tribal and NHO consultation in the Section 106 review process; and,
  • Participate in interagency initiatives focused on Native American issues.

What does ONAA do?

ONAA Initiatives

Supports ACHP policy development

Guidance development

ONAA staff regularly develops general guidance regarding consultation with Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations as well as targeted, issue-specific guidance.

The ACHP’s Recommendations on Tribal-Federal Relationships (PDF)

(2013) The Role of the THPO in Section 106 (PDF)

In 2011 the ONAA published guidance entitled, “Consultation with Native Hawaiian Organizations in the Section 106 Review Process: A Handbook.” (PDF)

(2011) Limitations on the Delegation of Authority by Federal Agencies to Initiate Tribal Consultation under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (PDF)

In 2008, the ONAA published updated guidance entitled, “Consultation with Indian Tribes in the Section 106 Review Process: A Handbook.” (PDF) This step-by-step guide is intended to assist federal agencies in consulting with Indian tribes but will be useful to all Section 106 participants.

(2008) Section 106 Consultation Between Federal Agencies and Indian Tribes Regarding Federal Permits, Licenses, and Assistance Questions and Answers (PDF)

(2005) Agency Section 106 Agreements with Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations (PDF)

(2001) Fees in the Section 106 Review Process

Assistance to Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations

ONAA staff is always available via telephone or e-mail to provide assistance to Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations regarding Section 106 consultation. ONAA can serve as the gateway for tribal staff and NHO members to other ACHP offices.

(2013) Guidance for Indian Tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations: What to Ask the Federal Agency in the Section 106 Process (PDF)

(2010) Whom to Contact if You Have Section 106 Issues: Guidance for Indian Tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations (PDF)

Assistance to federal agencies

ONAA staff is available to answer basic questions about consultation with tribal or Native Hawaiian organizations and to work with the ACHP’s Office of Federal Agency Programs on reviews of projects and programs with tribal or Native Hawaiian interest.

List of Native American Organizations (Department of the Interior, Office of Hawaiian Relations)

Government to Government Consultation

(2009) Procedures for Government to Government Consultation Between the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and Indian Tribes (PDF)

(2010) Consultation Process Pursuant to EO 13175: Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments (PDF)

August 2010 Tribal Consultation Report to OMB (PDF)

August 2011 Tribal Consultation Report to OMB (PDF)

Project and program review

ONAA staff may also participate in Section 106 reviews with OFAP staff at the request of a tribe, NHO, or federal agency.

For tribal or Native Hawaiian representatives seeking Section 106 consultation assistance, click here.

Interagency initiatives

ONAA staff participates in the Interagency Working Group on Indian Affairs (IWGIA), an informal, government-wide group of agency representatives who work with tribal governments. IWGIA’s mission is to foster interagency collaboration and coordination and to improve federal-tribal consultation and the delivery of services to Indian tribes.

ONAA also represents the ACHP on the Native Hawaiian Federal Interagency Working Group along with the Departments of Defense and the Interior. The working group provides assistance to federal agencies regarding consultation with Native Hawaiian organizations.

Other Resources

National Trust Publication Outlines Sacred Sites Protection Laws

In December 2014, the National Trust for Historic Preservation released a new publication that can assist tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations seeking support for protection of sacred and other cultural sites. Preserving Native American Places: A Guide to Federal Laws and Policies that Help Protect Cultural Resources and Sacred Sites is a well-organized and easy-to-use guide for non-specialists seeking general guidance on relevant laws that can assist with protection of places with cultural, historical, and religious significance to tribes across the country. The document can be accessed here.


Updated November 19, 2015

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