Message #177:
From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG
To:   "'Matthias Giessler'" 
Subject: Executive Order on Indian Sacred Sites
Date: Tue, 28 May 1996 19:57:48 -0701 (MST)
Mime-Version: 1.0


From: Michael 'Smoke' Pfeiffer

                            THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary

    For Immediate Release                             May 24, 1996

                            EXECUTIVE ORDER

         By the authority vested in me as President by the
    Constitution and the laws of the United States, in furtherance
    of Federal treaties, and in order to protect and preserve Indian
    religious practices, it is hereby ordered:

         Section 1.  Accomodation of Sacred Sites.  (a)  In managing
    Federal lands, each executive branch agency with statutory or
    administrative responsibility for the management of Federal
    lands shall, to the extent practicable, permitted by law, and
    not clearly inconsistent with essential agency functions,
    (1) accomodate access to and ceremonial use of Indian sacred
    sites by Indian religious practitioners and (2) avoid adversely
    affecting the physical integrity of such sacred sites.  Where
    appropriate, agencies shall maintain the confidentiality of
    sacred sites.

         (b)  For purposes of this order:

         (i)  "Federal lands" means any land or interests in land
    owned by the United States, including leasehold interests held
    by the United States, except Indian trust lands;

         (ii)  "Indian tribe" means an Indian or Alaska Native tribe,
    band, nation, pueblo, village, or community that the Secretary
    of the Interior acknowledges to exist as an Indian tribe
    pursuant to Public Law No. 103-454, 108 Stat. 4791, and "Indian"
    refers to a member of such an Indian tribe; and

         (iii)  "Sacred site" means any specific, discrete, narrowly
    delineated location on Federal land that is identified by an
    Indian tribe, or Indian individual determined to be an
    appropriately authoritative representative of an Indian
    religion, as sacred by virtue of its established religious
    significance to, or ceremonial use by, an Indian religion;
    provided that the tribe or appropriately authoritative
    representative of an Indian religion has informed the agency
    of the existence of such a site.

         Sec. 2.  Procedures.  (a)  Each executive branch agency
    with statutory or administrative responsibility for the
    management of Federal lands shall, as appropriate, promptly
    implement procedures for the purposes of carrying out the
    provisions of section 1 of this order, including, where

    practicable and appropriate, procedures to ensure reasonable
    notice is provided of proposed actions or land management
    policies that may restrict future access to or ceremonial use
    of, or adversely affect the physical integrity of, sacred sites.
    In all actions pursuant to this section, agencies shall comply
    with the Executive memorandum of April 29, 1994, "Government-to-
    Government Relations with Native American Tribal Governments."

                                  2

         (b) Within 1 year of the effective date of this order,
    the head of each executive branch agency with statutory or
    administrative responsibility for the management of Federal
    lands shall report to the President, through the Assistant to
    the President for Domestic Policy, on the implementation of this
    order.  Such reports shall address, among other things, (i) any
    changes necessary to accomodate access to and ceremonial use
    of Indian sacred sites; (ii) any changes necessary to avoid
    adversely affecting the physical integrity of Indian sacred
    sites; and (iii) procedures implemented or proposed to
    facilitate consultation with appropriate Indian tribes and
    religious leaders and the expeditious resolution of disputes
    relating to agency action on Federal lands that may adversely
    affect access to, ceremonial use of, or the physical integrity
    of sacred sites.

         Sec. 3.  Nothing in this order shall be construed to
    require a taking of vested property interests.  Nor shall this
    order be construed to impair enforceable rights to use of
    Federal lands that have been granted to third parties through
    final agency action.  For purposes of this order, "agency
    action" has the same meaning as in the Administrative Procedures
    Act (5 U.S.C.551(13).

         Sec. 4. This order is intended only to improve the
    internal management of the executive branch and is not
    intended to, nor does it, create any right, benefit, or trust
    responsibility, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law
    or equity by any party against the United States, its agencies
    officers, or any person.

                                  WILLIAM J. CLINTON

    THE WHITE HOUSE, May 24, 1996.