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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

NPS Plans Preservation On Rule Change Affecting Archaeological Materials - Public Invited to Information Sessions

The Department of the Interior has scheduled two meetings to discuss proposed rule changes related to disposition of archeological materials that are of insufficient interest to be retained in federal collections.

The National Park Service will present information about the proposed rule changes, including methods for moving materials to collections and returning items to Native Hawaiian groups, individuals or institutions.

The rule would NOT affect “cultural items” as defined by the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), including human remains and associated funerary objects.

David Gadsby, Ph.D., an archeologist with the National Park Service’s Archeology Program in Washington, DC, invites you to either one of the following information sessions:

Proposed Rule Change for the Disposition of Archeological Materials of “Insufficient Archeological Interest” to be Retained in Federal Collections
Date:  Monday, July 9, 2012
Time:  1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Location:  Prince Kūhiō Federal Building, 300 Ala Moana Blvd, Rm 3-127
Date:  Thursday, July 12, 2012
Time:  6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Location:  Pearl Harbor Visitor Center Research and Education Center in the WWII Valor in the Pacific National Monument Visitor Center Complex

A daytime meeting is scheduled in order to accommodate those who are able to attend as a part of their work or have other evening commitments, and an evening meeting is scheduled in order to accommodate those who are available in the evening.

The proposed rule change would amend 36 CFR Part 79, “Curation of Federally-Owned and Administered Archaeological Collections;” see and the attached copy of 36 CFR Part 79 for more information about the existing rule.

A regulation for deaccessioning was proposed in 1990, but was not issued due to unresolved issues.  Declining funding and the growth of collections continue to concern many responsible for and interested in the appropriate curation of federal collections.  Discussions have continued since 1990; a working group worked on drafting a proposed rule through the mid-2000s; and the National Park Service anticipates proposing a rule change in the coming months.

Attached are separate flyers for the two meetings which we encourage you to pass along to colleagues and contacts who you believe would be interested in participating in the information sessions which will include a presentation for approximately 20 minutes, followed by a question and answer period.

Please register if you plan to participate to Lisa C. Oshiro Suganuma, U.S. Department of the Interior, Office of Native Hawaiian Relations, (808) 792-9555 or

Please provide your name, title (optional), organization (optional), and the date and time of the session in which you plan to participate so that we know approximately how many handouts to provide.  The Office of Native Hawaiian Relations is assisting with outreach and registration for these meetings.

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