US Army Corps of Engineers
Chicago District

Cultural Resources Coordination (Section 106)

Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act requires Federal agencies to take into account the effects of Federal, Federally assisted, or Federally permitted undertakings on historic properties listed in, or eligible for, the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP).  The State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) assists the lead Federal agency in identifying historic properties and consults with the agency on reducing or avoiding adverse effects. 

Projects that require a Department of the Army permit are considered undertakings, therefore the effects of these projects on historic resources must be taken into consideration during the permitting process.  Historic properties that may be evaluated under Section 106 for inclusion on the NRHP include historic and prehistoric archaeological sites, and historic structures, buildings, districts and objects.  Appendix C is the program alternative under which the USACE Regulatory Branch implements Section 106.  Permit applications are evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine a project’s potential to affect historic properties.

Tribal Consultation

Our Nation has long recognized the sovereign status of Indian tribes.  The United States Constitution specifically addresses tribal sovereignty by classing Indian treaties among the "supreme Law of the land", and establishes tribal affairs as a unique focus of Federal concern.  Federal recognition of an Indian Tribe constitutes designation of a Native community as a political sovereign within the U.S.  Federalist system.  As a result, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), as part of the Federal government, has a unique ‘Trust relationship’ with each tribe based on the U.S.  Constitution, treaties, statutes, court decisions and executive orders.  That ‘Trust relationship’ requires the Corps to protect and preserve tribal resources to the greatest extent possible. 

The Corps works with tribes to be successful in our mission to serve the nation.  Tribes can be powerful proponents or opponents to any undertaking.  By working closely with them, we can help our undertakings be more successful by putting tribes in the position of being advocates rather than blockers of projects.  The geographic location of tribes, especially in the West, makes them important partners in any effort.