Appendix I Glossary of Terms

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This list of terms and topics is intended to enable agencies and project applicants to use appropriate terminology when communicating with indigenous communities, thereby increasing effectiveness of consultation and collaboration, and building relationships based on mutual trust and respect.

Alaska Native Corporation: Any Regional Corporation, Village Corporation, Urban Corporation, or Group Corporation organized under the laws of the State of Alaska in accordance with the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, as amended (43 U.S.C. 1601, et seq.).

Associated group: Indigenous people with a connection to a place or resource. This includes all native tribes and native indigenous communities, regardless of recognition status, which does not impact these groups’ sovereignty, interests in ancestral territory and resources, or the validity of traditional knowledge and cultural practices.

Consultation: Per the implementing regulations of NHPA Section 106, consultation means the process of seeking, discussing, and considering the views of other participants, and, where feasible, seeking agreement with them regarding matters arising in the section 106 process (36 C.F.R. § 800.16). Pertaining to Indian tribes, consultation means the process of government-to-government dialogue between the Federal Government and Indian tribes regarding proposed federal actions in a manner intended to secure meaningful and timely tribal input. It is a deliberative process that aims to create effective collaboration and informed federal decision-making. Consultation is built upon government-to-government exchange of information and promotes enhanced communication that emphasizes trust, respect, and shared responsibility. The U.S. Government conducts consultation with Indian or Alaska Native tribes, bands, nations, pueblos, villages, or communities that the Secretary of the Interior acknowledges to exist as an Indian tribe pursuant to the Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994, 25 U.S.C. 479a. Coordination and collaboration are essential for effective consultation, but they do not satisfy the requirement of legally mandated government-to-government consultation.

Cultural landscape: A geographic area (including both cultural and natural resources and the wildlife or domestic animals therein), associated with a historic event, activity, or person or exhibiting other cultural or aesthetic values. There are four general types of cultural landscapes, not mutually exclusive: historic sites, historic designed landscapes, historic vernacular landscapes, and ethnographic landscapes. Historic vernacular landscapes evolved through use by the people whose activities or occupancy shaped it, and ethnographic landscapes contain a variety of natural and cultural resources that associated people define as heritage resources (Birnbaum and Peters 1996).

Cultural Landscape Approach: A management approach that uses cultural landscapes as a framework to understand places and their associated resources. This approach is analogous and complementary to ecosystem-based management, and examines the relationships among living and non-living resources, and their environment. This approach enables a better understanding of the human connections to places, as well as the important human influences on ecosystems over time (MPA FAC 2011).

Cultural resources: The broad array of stories, knowledge, people, places, structures, and objects, together with their associated environment, that contribute to the maintenance of cultural identity and/or reveal the historic and contemporary human interactions with an ecosystem. This can include both tangible and intangible cultural heritage. According to UNESCO, tangible heritage includes buildings and historic places, monuments, artifacts, etc., which are considered worthy of preservation for the future. These include objects significant to the archaeology, architecture, science or technology of a specific culture. Intangible heritage includes the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artifacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage.

Culturally sensitive information: Information that is culturally privileged or otherwise controlled or regulated, often by gender, age, or cultural norms. Sharing this knowledge with non-tribal members may be contrary to tribal practices. Even though culturally sensitive information may sometimes be publicly available, respect for the nature of this information must be demonstrated when consulting with tribes.

Federally recognized Indian Tribe: Indian tribe, band, nation, or other organized group or community that the Secretary of the Interior acknowledges to exist as an Indian tribe pursuant to the Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994, 25 U.S.C. 479a, including a native village, regional corporation or village corporation, as those terms are defined in section 3 of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1602), which is recognized as eligible for the special programs and services provided by the United States to Indians because of their status as Indians (36 C.F.R. § 800.16). Historically, most of today’s federally recognized tribes received federal recognition status through treaties, acts of Congress, presidential executive orders or other federal administrative actions, or federal court decisions. The Federal Government has a unique relationship with Indian tribes derived from the Constitution of the United States, treaties, Supreme Court decisions, and federal statutes. Consultation with a federally recognized Indian tribe must recognize the government-to-government relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, and should be conducted in a sensitive manner respectful of tribal sovereignty (36 C.F.R. § 800.2 and Executive Order 13175).

Indigenous community/group: Descendants of peoples who inhabited the area now encompassed by the United States and its territories at the time of Euro-American colonization, or the establishment of present political boundaries, and who retain some or all of their own social, economic, cultural and political institutions, irrespective of their legal status. “Although such groups lack recognition as sovereigns, they may have environmental and public health concerns that are different from other groups or from the general public. These differences may exist due to a subsistence lifestyle and/or unique cultural practices. Agencies should seek to identify such groups and to include them in decision-making processes. Although they do not have a unique political relationship with the Federal Government, non-federally recognized tribes may be comprised of ‘racial minorities’ and therefore benefit from the full range of civil rights law protections” (NEJAC 2000:10).

Means/manner of connection: It is the responsibility of the tribe or indigenous group to provide a contextual statement regarding connection to place. Connection is likely to be widely varied between tribes and even within tribes. For instance it may be based on ancestral ties to prominent landforms, or to a relatively recent landscape dating to relocation-era displacement but which now holds multigenerational interactions and modified practices such as basketry, hunting, etc.

            Distinguishing between MOA and MOU :
Memorandum of Agreement (MOA): A written agreement that describes in detail the specific responsibilities and actions to be taken by each of the parties so that their goals may be accomplished. Per the implementing regulations of NHPA Section 106, MOA means the document that records the terms and conditions agreed upon to resolve the adverse effects of an undertaking upon historic properties (36 C.F.R. § 800.16). In general, an MOA is legally enforceable. As used by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, for example, an MOA is a “conditional agreement” between two or more parties where the transfer of funds for services is anticipated.
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU): In general, a writing that describes a very broad concept of mutual understanding, goals, and plans shared by the parties.  An MOU is usually not legally binding, and does not involve the transfer of funds.

Native Hawaiian Organization: Any organization which serves and represents the interests of Native Hawaiians; has as a primary and stated purpose the provision of services to Native Hawaiians; and has demonstrated expertise in aspects of historic preservation that are culturally significant to Native Hawaiians. The term includes, but is not limited to, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs of the State of Hawaii and Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawai’i Nei, an organization incorporated under the laws of the State of Hawaii. The NHPA requires the agency official to consult with any Native Hawaiian organization that attaches religious and cultural significance to historic properties that may be affected by an undertaking. (36 C.F.R. § 800.2 and § 800.16).

Programmatic agreement: A document that records the terms and conditions agreed upon to resolve the potential adverse effects of a federal agency program, complex undertaking or other situations in accordance with 36 C.F.R. § 800.14(b) (36 C.F.R. § 800.16).

Project applicant: An applicant for Federal assistance or for a Federal permit, license or other approval is entitled to participate as a consulting party. The agency official may authorize an applicant or group of applicants to initiate consultation with the SHPO/THPO and others, but remains legally responsible for all findings and determinations charged to the agency official. Federal agencies that provide authorizations to applicants remain responsible for their government-to-government relationships with Indian tribes (36 C.F.R. § 800.2).

Relationship: The way or manner in which people (tribes, indigenous group, or others), things, actions and/or place are connected. This is most often based in practices held by a community. These practices are likely to have been modified or changed over time and are likely to continue to develop into the future.

Resource: A feature, material, or supply that can be drawn upon to enhance or contribute to life. This applies to purposes of sustenance and/or quality of life. Most often this encompasses tangible items of importance held by indigenous communities and could include but not be limited to: the flora and fauna of an area, as well as hunting, fishing, and gathering locations, archaeological sites, rock features, villages, and burial locations. However, intangible items are also important resources for indigenous communities and may include sacred spaces or places such as creation or prayer areas.  Natural phenomena such as wind, water currents, lightning, and thunder are potential attributes associated with resources.

Spatial area: An area of interest defined by a tribe or other indigenous group. It is deliberately all-encompassing and intended to include the diverse and complex understandings of the world held by tribes that pertain to airspace, land surface and below surface dimensions and can be defined by but not limited to: oral traditions, ratified or non-ratified treaties, executive orders, statutes (federal or state), cultural use or based on historical documents.

State-Recognized Indian Tribes: Native American tribes that are recognized by individual states either informally, based on certain dealings with a state over time, or through a formal process instituted by the individual state. State recognition confers limited benefits under federal law and may offer some protection of autonomy. However, this is not the same as federal recognition, by which the Federal Government acknowledges a tribe as a sovereign nation. Currently, there are 566 federally recognized tribes and approximately 400 non-federally recognized tribes, many of which are state-recognized.

Traditional Cultural Property (TCP): A property type on the National Register of Historic Places (buildings, structures, sites, historic districts, objects, landscapes) may possess traditional cultural significance, derived from the role the property plays in a community's historically rooted beliefs, customs, and practices. That property would be eligible for inclusion in the National Register because of its association with cultural practices or beliefs of a living community that (a) are rooted in that community's history, and (b) are important in maintaining the continuing cultural identity of the community. Because a TCP is a National Register property type, it must have a defined boundary. This can apply to non-indigenous traditional groups (Parker and King 1990).

Traditional [Ecological] Knowledge (TK or TEK): A cumulative body of knowledge, practice, and belief, evolving by adaptive processes and handed down through generations by cultural transmission. It concerns the relationship of living beings (including humans) with one another and with their environment.

Treaty Tribe: A Native American tribe that formally negotiated a treaty with the United States government between 1778 and 1871, which was subsequently ratified by the United States Senate. A treaty is a constitutionally recognized contract between sovereign nations. These legally binding contracts are protected under the U.S. Constitution, which states that they are the “supreme law of the land.” Under these treaties, tribes ceded millions of acres of land while retaining certain rights such as fishing, hunting, and gathering, as well as rights to determine use of reserved land and its resources. As federally recognized tribes, treaty tribes retain a sovereign status and maintain a government-to-government relationship with the United States. The treaties obligate the Federal Government to protect tribal treaty rights, lands, assets, and resources—commonly referred to as a trust obligation.

Tribal Cultural Landscape (TCL): Any place in which a relationship, past or present, exists between a spatial area, resource, and an associated group of indigenous people whose cultural practices, beliefs, or identity connects them to that place. A tribal cultural landscape is determined by and known to a culturally related group of indigenous people with relationships to that place.

Tribal Historic Preservation Officer: In accordance with Section 101(d)(2) of the National Historic Preservation Act, THPOs formally assume the responsibilities of the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) for purposes of Section 106 compliance on their tribal lands (all lands within the exterior boundaries of any Indian reservation and all dependent Indian communities). These duties include identifying and maintaining inventories of culturally significant properties, nominating properties to national and tribal registers of historic places, conducting Section 106 reviews of federal agency projects on tribal lands, and conducting educational programs on the importance of preserving historic properties. Federal agencies consult with THPOs in lieu of the SHPO for undertakings occurring on, or affecting historic properties on, tribal lands. The decision to participate or not participate in the national historic preservation program rests with the tribe.

Undertaking: A project, activity, or program funded in whole or in part under the direct or indirect jurisdiction of a federal agency, including those carried out by or on behalf of a federal agency; those carried out with federal financial assistance; and those requiring a federal permit, license or approval (36 C.F.R. § 800.16).