CalNAGPRA Consultation Requirements

AB 275 requires consultation with California Indian tribes during the creation of the preliminary inventories and summaries and after submission to the Commission.

“Consultation” means the meaningful and timely process of seeking, discussing, and considering carefully the views of others, in a manner that is cognizant of all parties’ cultural values and, where feasible, achieving agreement. Consultation between agencies or museums and California Indian tribes shall be conducted in a manner that is respectful of tribal sovereignty. Consultation also shall recognize the tribes’ potential need for confidentiality with respect to tribal traditional knowledge and all tribal information shared during the consultation. Cal. Health & Saf. Code, § 8012, subd. (e).

During the compilation of the preliminary inventory:

  • Museums or agencies must consult, prior to new or additional inventory work being conducted, with affiliated California Indian tribes on any protocols to be used in the inventory process, including identifying human remains and associated funerary objects, burial site, or ceremonial items. Id., § 8013, subd. (b)(1)(B).
  • Museums or agencies must consult with California Indian tribes reasonably believed to be culturally affiliated with the items, during the compilation of the preliminary inventory, as part of the determination of affiliation. Id., § 8013, subd. (b)(1)(D).
  • If the agency or museum cannot determine which California Indian tribes are believed to be culturally affiliated with the items, tribes that may be culturally affiliated with the items, in consultation with the Commission, shall be consulted during the compilation of the preliminary inventory. Id.
  • The museum or agency must engage in consultation with California Indian tribes as part of the completion of the inventory. Id., § 8013, subd. (b)(2).
  • The Commission may assist with the identification of California Indian tribes, but the agency or museum bears the obligation to contact and consult with the California Indian tribes. Id.
  • Museums or agencies must also provide the original and any updated catalogues to the consulting California Indian tribes. Id., § 8013, subd. (b)(1)(F).

During the completion of the preliminary summary:

  • Museums or agencies must engage in consultation with California Indian tribes as part of the completion of the preliminary summary and shall defer to tribal recommendations for appropriate handling and treatment. Id., § 8013, subd. (c)(1)(2).
  • The agency or museum must also record any identifications of cultural items made by tribal representatives. The identifications may include broad categorical identifications, including, but not limited to, the identification of regalia objects as sacred objects or the identification of everything from a specific site as a sacred object because that site is a sacred site. Id.
  • The Commission may assist with the identification of California Indian tribes, but the agency or museum bears the obligation to contact and consult with the California Indian tribes. Id.

Following preparation of a preliminary summary/inventory:

  • Each agency or museum must consult with California Indian tribes and tribally authorized government officials and tribally authorized traditional religious leaders. Id., § 8013, subd. (c)(1).
  • Once an agency or museum provides a copy of its preliminary inventory and summary to the Commission, the agency or museum must consult with California Indian tribes that may be culturally affiliated with the human remains and cultural items. Id., § 8013, subd. (j).
  • The Commission may assist with the identification of California Indian tribes, but the agency or museum bears the obligation to contact and consult with the California Indian tribes. Id.
  • The consultation process shall include all of the following:
    1. Preliminary inventories and summaries shall be reviewed by culturally affiliated and potentially culturally affiliated California Indian tribes, who shall have the ability to concur or disagree with the information in the preliminary inventory or summary. Tribal concurrence, disagreement, or nonresponse shall be noted on the preliminary inventory or summary by the Commission at the end of the 30-day review period. If a consulting California Indian tribe disagrees with the contents of the preliminary inventory or summary, the agency or museum shall either revise the preliminary inventory or summary to correct the disputed information or the Commission shall offer to initiate dispute resolution. Id., § 8013, subd. (j)(1).
    2. The status of the inventory or summary shall be changed from preliminary to final by the Commission once all responding California Indian tribes listed in the inventory or summary concur with the information in the inventory or summary. Id., § 8013, subd. (j)(2).
    3. An inventory or summary that has been finalized may be moved back to preliminary status at the request of a consulting California Indian tribe if inaccuracies are found in the finalized inventory or summary prior to repatriation. Id., § 8013, subd. (j)(3).
    4. The designation of an inventory or summary as preliminary or final is intended to reflect whether consulting California Indian tribes agree with the decisions and identifications of the agencies and museums who are preparing these documents. An inventory or summary does not need to be marked as final for a California Indian tribe to place a claim. Nothing in this section shall be construed to mean that an agency or museum may delay the repatriation of items in a final inventory or summary. Id., § 8013, subd. (j)(4).