DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES & CULTURE

Department of Natural Resources was established to conserve and manage resources on Tribally-held lands and to work with other governments to influence conservation and management of resources throughout the Tribes’ Ancestral Territory.

The Confederated Tribes has the rights and responsibilities of any government to its people and their resources.

The Confederated Tribes have had a continuous government of, by, and for the Tribes since Time Immemorial. The Constitution of the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians states in part:

Preamble. “We, the members of the Confederated Tribes … establish our tribal government in order to … Acquire, develop and conserve resources to achieve economic and social self-sufficiency for our tribe” Article 1 Section 2. “The jurisdiction of the Confederated Tribes … shall extend to the fullest extent permitted by law over all lands, waters, property, airspace, minerals, wildlife, and other resources … located within the … reservation, over any tribal land or land held … in trust status, and over any “Indian Country” of the Confederated Tribes as defined by Federal law.”

The Confederated Tribes has the rights and responsibilities of any government to its people and their resources. To this end, the Department of Natural Resources was established to conserve and manage resources on Tribally-held lands and to work with other governments to influence conservation and management of resources throughout the Tribes’ Ancestral Territory.

The mission of the Department of Natural Resources is to research, monitor, assess, manage, use, conserve, protect, and restore the natural resources of the Confederated Tribes’ Ancestral Territory, and to protect Tribal archaeological resources. In pursuit of this mission, the Department of Natural Resources has five goals:

Goal 1 Return of Tribal Lands;
Goal 2 Expand the exercise of Tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and governmental capacity;
Goal 3 Maintain and improve Tribal environmental quality;
Goal 4 Manage Tribal natural resources for economic and social benefit;
Goal 5 Protect archaeological resources and historic properties.

Tribal Members login for more information

NATURAL RESOURCE PROGRAMS

The Culture Department works to support the effective integration of Tribal culture into all Tribal operations, in a manner that helps our Tribal members understand our rich Tribal heritage, and supports efforts to recognize the cultural knowledge that our ancestors and our environment have provided to help our peoples thrive in our traditional lands for thousands of years. The department is also directed to help build cohesion and a common sense of pride among our Tribal members, and ensure that our members and the world know the true story of our peoples.

The Culture Department's planning incorporates the arts, heritage, humanities, and culture that adequately represent the composition of our Tribes unique cultural interests in our ancestral homeland.

We strive to identify barriers to public cultural awareness and education and cultural expression and remove as many financial, physical, and culturally perceived roadblocks as possible in order for arts, humanities, heritage, and culture to flourish and grow in our communities.

Environmental Capacity Building Program

The Environmental Capacity Building Program purpose is to expand and exercise Tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and governmental capacity by exercising the right of, and assuming the responsibility for, the Confederated Tribes to research, monitor, assess, manage, use, conserve, protect, and restore the natural resources of the Confederated Tribes’ Ancestral Territory.

The Environmental Capacity Building Program plans, develops, and establishes environmental programs to protect, conserve, manage, and improve the environmental, human health and cultural values of resources within the Tribes’ Ancestral Territory.

Past projects have included tribal environmental agreements; development of a water quality monitoring plan and quality assurance project plan; a watershed assessment; nonpoint source pollution assessments and management plans; research of environmental standards and ordinances; integrated resource management planning; GIS development; outdoor air, surface water, drinking water, wastewater, groundwater, contaminated soil and sediment, and invasive species management strategy development; climate change adaptation strategy development; etc.

The Confederated Tribes gratefully acknowledge the support of the US EPA for the Tribes' Environmental Capacity Building Program.

ETEP - Tribal Environmental Plan
Environmental Assessments and Inventory 2015
Environmental management Strategy 2015
Tribal Water Quality Monitoring Strategy 2015

Air Quality Program   Qaya (Miluk Coos), Breath of Life

Click Here to see current air quality in Coos Bay, or select another zip code
Click Here for EPA AirNow Map with CTCLUSI Admin and Marshfield High sensors
Click Here to see the Purple Air sensor air quality map
EPA Issues Air Quality Advisory and Open Burning Ban for Reservations in Oregon and Washington

The Air Quality Program exists to protect Tribal member health and resources from ambient and indoor air pollution. We operate indoor and outdoor air monitoring equipment and are continually seeking to build additional program capacity. Eventually, CTCLUSI will seek regulatory authority under selected sections of the Federal Clean Air Act from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Tribal Authority Rule (TAR).

CTCLUSI is a beneficiary of the Volkswagen Settlement Tribal Trust. The Air Quality Program is responsible for administering this program for the Tribe. For questions, additional information requests, or document requests, please contact the Air and Water Protection Specialist, Carter Thomas (cthomas@ctclusi.org).
VW Settlement Information for CTCLUSI

In 2007, the Air Quality Program completed an Air Quality Assessment for the Tribes' Ancestral Airsheds. The purpose of the Air Quality Assessment was to improve the Tribes' understanding of current air quality conditions and determine whether air quality risks from criteria pollutants and/or air toxics exists.

In 2008, the Air Quality Program was successful in securing funding through EPA Region 10 under Section 103 of the Federal Clean Air Act. This funding provided the Air Quality Program with an opportunity to install a PM 2.5 and Meteorological Monitoring Project on tribal lands near the Tribal Administration Offices. Technical assistance was provided by the Tribal Environmental Exchange Network (TREX) for station installation and data management. A Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP) was developed for the PM 2.5 & Meteorological Monitoring Project and was approved by the EPA in October 2009. Meteorological monitoring was initiated on October 2, 2009, and PM 2.5 monitoring was initiated in September 2011.

The Air Quality Program secured a "Treatment in the Same Manner as a State" or TAS authorization for Sections 105 and 505(a)(2) of the Federal Clean Air Act. TAS status provides the Tribes with an "affected status" in regards to the state and federal air quality permitting process.

View the Tribe’s Air Quality Monitoring data in near REAL TIME at the link below.

Current Measurements at CTCLUSI Radar Hill-OR

If you have any questions please contact Carter Thomas, Air and Water Protection Specialist in the Department of Natural Resources. 541-751-3282.

Nonpoint Source Pollution

The Nonpoint Source Water Pollution Program identifies non-point sources of water pollution, assess the effects of this pollution on Tribal water and aquatic resources, and works to manage this pollution and mitigate its adverse effects.

The Tribes' Nonpoint Source Water Pollution Assessment Plan that was completed in December of 2003 has identified deficiencies in riparian buffers and instream structure as the most significant contributors to nonpoint source pollution affecting the Tribes' Ancestral Watersheds. Working with local stakeholders interested in watershed assessment and improvement projects, the program is working on systematically and naturalistically restoring Ancestral Watersheds to improve water quality for culturally-significant resources such as salmon and shellfish.

Non-point source nutrient pollution or other water changes may increase the occurrence of harmful algae blooms (HABs) that can make shellfish toxic to consume.

Bivalves, such as mussels and other shellfish, filter feed. The filtration process can also lead to concentration of contaminants from the water in the shellfish. Certain contaminants pose a serious health risk to humans if a contaminated shellfish is consumed. The most dangerous contaminants are paralytic shellfish toxin (PST) and Domoic Acid. These biotoxins are not destroyed by heating. In addition, events such as sewage spills and runoff during storms can contaminate shellfish making them unsafe for human consumption.

For current closures check the Shellfish safety hotline: 503-986-4728 or 1-800-448-2474 or visit
Recreational Shellfish Biotoxin Closures

TRIBAL WASTE MANAGEMENT GOALS

  • Maintain and improve Tribal environmental quality through integrated waste management
  • Complete and update annually a Tribal Integrated Waste Management Plan that outlines an appropriate balance of waste prevention, reuse, recycling, and disposal.
  • Meet waste disposal and recycling needs for Tribal facilities and reduce waste generation
  • Develop a waste hierarchy of waste reduction, recycling, composting, and disposal
  • Ensure environmental protection through proper disposal of municipal waste, construction and demolition wastes, and other special wastes, such as household hazardous waste, industrial waste, asbestos, appliances, electronic equipment, tires, motor oil, etc
  • Develop Tribal Code respective to management and enforcement of an Integrated Waste Management Plan
  • Evaluate cost effectiveness of implementing Tribal Integrated Waste Management Plan following Tribal Code development

WASTE REDUCTION

CTCLUSI recognizes that the most effective way to reduce waste is to not create it in the first place. Waste reduction, reuse, and recycling all reduce costs and reduce impacts to Tribal cultural and natural resources.

WASTE MANAGEMENT

Tribal Integrated Waste Management Plan
This plan has been prepared by the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua & Siuslaw as a guide to develop and implement an effective integrated waste management program specific to the tribe’s needs. The Plan will assist the Tribes with making decisions to improve the lands, air, water, and cultural resources in the Tribes’ Ancestral Territory for future generations. This plan includes the identification of existing waste systems and waste reduction strategies, implementation, monitoring and outreach methods.
Tribal Integrated Waste management Plan is located on the side bar of this page

Information regarding Disposal and Transfer Sites in the Tribes’ Five County Service Area can be found:

Tribal Integrated Waste management Plan

OR online at the following links:
Coos County
Douglas County
Lane County
Lincoln County
Curry county no link available at this time
Other counties in OR

RECYCLING

Tribal members are encouraged to take recyclables to a transfer station or recycling center near their residence or business.

ILLEGAL DUMPING

People observing illegal dumping of waste (the action, the presence of improper materials in collection containers, or waste materials dumped in inappropriate locations) on the Tribes’ property are to notify Tribal Police at 541-997-6011.

UNWANTED AND UNUSED DRUGS

Throughout Oregon communities have established permanent, free collection boxes that are open year-round for safe and anonymous disposal of unused drugs. Please check the link below for locations and other information. Tribal Police may also available to assist with drug disposal. Tribal Police may be reached at: 541-997-6011.

Drug Take-Back and Disposal

The Water Quality Program documents, protects and improves the ecological health of the Tribes' Ancestral Watersheds. Efforts include developing plans, best management practices, standards, and ordinances that protect and improve Tribal waters for their multiple ecological, cultural, economic, and intrinsic values.

The Water Quality Program was established in 2002. Within that same year, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the Confederated Tribes' "Treatment in a Manner Similar to a State" or TAS application under Section 518 (e) of the Federal Clean Water Act.

In 2003, the Water Quality Program completed a Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP 1.8) for an initial baseline water quality monitoring project at select monitoring sites in the Coos Estuary, Siuslaw Estuary, and the Sixes River located on the central and southern Oregon Coast. QAPP 1.8 received EPA approval in December 2003.

Early in 2004, the Water Quality Program initiated the baseline water quality monitoring project. The initial focus was to collect data for five core water quality parameters. These parameters include water temperature, turbidity, salinity, pH, and dissolved oxygen. Water quality data collection was targeted for spring high-high and low-low tides. This resulted in sampling runs that could occur at all hours of the day and night.

Data collection was expanded in 2006 with EPA approval of QAPP 2.0. QAPP 2.0 incorporated the use of continuous YSI data loggers (ysi.com). The YSI data loggers were programmed to collect a sample every thirty minutes. This resulted in a better understanding of water quality conditions throughout tidal cycles. In addition, the Water Quality Program added a water bacteria (E. Coli and Enterococci) parameter.

Efforts are underway to expand the Water Quality Program beyond surface water quality monitoring and include groundwater monitoring. A QAPP for groundwater monitoring was approved by EPA in the summer of 2008.

The Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians gratefully acknowledge the support from the US EPA for the Tribes' Water Quality Program.

NVS Data Explorer

Oregon Tide Tables & Charts
Coos Bay Oregon Tide Chart
Shellfish Safety Closures (ODA) Hotline number 1-800-448-2474

The United States Environmental Protection Agency awarded the Tribe with a CERCLA Section 128(a) Grant in 2007. The purpose of the grant was to establish a Tribal Response Program in order to identify, assess, clean up, and monitor contaminants on Tribal Lands. This grant also supports the Tribal Resource Response Specialist. The Tribal Resource Response Specialist is responsible for building and implementing the Tribal Response Program. The mission of the Tribal Response Program is to protect the Tribe’s cultural and natural resources through resiliency, prevention, response, cleanup, and natural resource damage assessment.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Tribal Response Program is to identify, assess, clean up, and monitor brownfields properties. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines a brownfield as “…a property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.” CTCLUSI’s Tribal Response Program works with Realty and Planning Departments, as well as staff in Forestry, Culture, and Historic Preservation to identify properties for cleanup and remediate them for redevelopment. The Program has recently finished remediation at Coos Head in Coos Bay, and anticipates a No Further Action letter from Oregon Department of Environmental Quality for successful remediation at the Duman property, located in Florence.

A secondary responsibility of the Program is to address spills that impair Tribal lands and resources in the Tribe’s Ancestral Territory. This includes all hazardous materials, including oil spills, chemical spills, and many other contaminants of concern. CTCLUSI and Culture and Natural Resources have developed and begun implementation of the Tribal Estuary Response Plan, which establishes the policies and procedures under which the Tribe will operate in the event of a hazardous materials incident, oil spill, or other release that might impact our estuaries. This Plan is designed to prepare the Tribe for incident response and to minimize the exposure to or damage from materials that could adversely impact human health and safety or tribal resources. The Tribal Response Program also works with numerous local partners on emergency preparedness and response, undertaking collaborative protective activities for the benefit of both the Tribal community and community as a whole.

Brownfield Coos Head video

The clean-up of the Tribe's Coos Head Property remains top priority for the Tribal Response Program.

The Tribes regained the 43.10 acre tract known as Coos Head, located near Charleston, OR, in late 2005. Coos Head had a long history of military use beginning in 1875 – first by the US Army, then the US Navy, and finally by the Oregon Air National Guard. Throughout these 130 years of military occupation, certain areas on the property were contaminated. Until these contaminated areas are cleaned up, the Tribes ability to reoccupy Coos Head remains severely restricted.

Currently, there are three active clean-up programs working on the Coos Head Assessment and Remediation Project. The Underground Storage Tank Program cleans up gasoline and diesel which have leaked from buried fuel tanks. The Military Munitions Response Program cleans up lead slugs, lead shot, and skeet fragments from the firing ranges. The Installation Restoration Program cleans up general chemical contamination including solvents used to clean auto parts, PCBs leaked from transformers, etc. Partners working on the Coos Head clean-up project include the Air National Guard, Army Corps of Engineers, US Navy, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and multiple environmental contractors.

Cultural Resource Protection Program and Tribal Historic Preservation Office responsibilities include:

  • Site location, identification, and monitoring
  • Intergovernmental coordination; permit reviews
  • Cooperation with public land managers and private landowners
  • Section 106 National Historic Preservation Act consistency determinations

Cultural resource protection is the highest priority of the the Cultural Division. Cultural resource protection focuses on the protection of archaeological sites and traditional cultural properties. Federal laws including the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA); the Archaeological Resource Protection Act (ARPA), the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), and the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA); State of Oregon laws including ORS 97.745 and ORS 358.920; Oregon Land Use Planning Goal 5; Coos County Zoning and Land Development Ordinance; and City of Florence Land Development Ordinance governs cultural resource protection on public and private land.

Private landowners have been very supportive of cultural resource protection on their property. The Confederated Tribes have a long track record of working with landowners on development projects which both meet the needs of the landowner and protect the value of the cultural resource.

The Western Oregon Tribal Fairness Act was passed and signed into law in January 2018. Title II of the Act conveyed portions of federally owned (previously Bureau of Land Management lands) amounting to seven parcels totaling 14,742 acres. Dispersed throughout the ancestral territory of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians (CTCLUSI), each tract is culturally and/or economically significant and will play a vital role in the future for the Tribal self-determination and sovereignty. These lands, now held in trust by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), will be managed in accordance with applicable federal and tribal laws, according to the desires of the membership of the Tribe.

Tribal Members login for more information on the Tribal Forestry Management including:

  • Tribal Forestry Survey
  • Informational Films
  • Maps of the seven forest tracts

This year the Tribes’ Department of Natural Resources (DNR) had the privilege of hosting the Oregon Tribal Environmental Forum (OTEF). Held in Florence, Tribal, state and federal representatives, traveled from all over Oregon, Washington and Idaho to attend the two day event. OTEF was started in 1999-2000 by Oregon Tribes, to encourage discussion of Tribal environmental issues and concerns unique to Oregon. OTEF continues to focus on developing collaborative efforts and resources to address Tribal issues with a collective knowledge and experience approach. Day 1 of the forum was presentations from DNR staff about the Tribes projects and programs, followed by thirteen presenters covering a multitude of topics; emergency preparedness planning and disaster resilience (earthquake/tsunami), EPA Water Quality Standards rule-making, climate change in Indian Country, Green Funding Opportunities - Grants, West Coast Regional Planning Body development, collaborative organizations within Tribal Communities addressing environmental issues, toxic algae in freshwater lakes, future wildfire projections based on climatic trends, and environmental toxins in Indian Country. Day 2 of the Forum was our “Field Trip” day, where we gave a small tour of the Empire-Charleston Area, stopping at Baldich and Xitlxaldich, showing those in attendance a small piece of our beautiful traditional lands. Thank you to all of those in attendance, the presenters and everyone who helped facilitate the 2015 OTEF!

The Emergency Preparedness Program works with other Tribal Departments - particularly the Tribal Police Department - to develop Emergency Preparedness capacity. Emergency preparedness planning has included emphasizing the need for preparedness at the individual and household levels; newsletter articles; a Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan developed in cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA); and an Emergency Communications Plan and a Comprehensive Emergency Response Plan (being developed in cooperation with the Oregon Emergency Management Agency.) In addition to preparedness at the individual and household levels, integration and interoperability with the emergency response networks within the Tribes' area is being emphasized during the development of emergency preparedness

Basic Emergency Preparedness

Create a Family Disaster Plan
Meet with your family.

  • Discuss the types of disasters that could occur
  • Explain how to prepare and respond
  • Discuss what to do if advised to evacuate
  • Discuss what to do with pets - Red Cross does not allow pets in their shelters
  • Practice whatever you have discussed

Plan how your family will stay in contact if separated by a disaster.

  • Pick two meeting places:

1. A location a safe distance from your home in case of fire 2. A place outside your neighborhood in case you cannot return home

  • Choose an out of state friend or relative as a “check in contact” for everyone to call

Complete these steps.

  • Post emergency numbers by every phone
  • Show responsible family members how and when to shut off the water, gas and electricity at main switches
  • Install a smoke detector on every level of your home. Test monthly and change the batteries at least twice a year
  • Learn first aid and CPR
  • Meet with your neighbors and plan how you could work together after a disaster
  • Make plans for child care in case parents cannot get home
  • Consider how you could help neighbors who have special needs, such as elderly or disabled

persons

Individual/Family Disaster Supply Kits
WATER-A normally active person requires a minimum of 2 quarts of water per day. Hot environment or intensely stressful activities can double that amount. Nursing mothers, children and ill people will need more. Store at least 1 gallon of water per person per day in plastic bottles such as soft drink bottles. DO NOT use plastic milk cartons or glass containers that will break.

FOOD-Store at least a 3 day supply of non-perishable food per person. Food should require no refrigeration, preparation or cooking and little or no water. If you need to heat food, pack a can of sterno. Food items should be compact and lightweight. Suggestions include: *Ready to eat canned meat, fruits and vegetables, canned juices, milk and soup; staples like sugar, salt and pepper

  • High energy foods; peanut butter, jelly, crackers, granola bars, trail mix
  • Vitamins
  • Food for infants, elderly persons, or those on special diets, if appropriate
  • Comfort/stress food; cookies, hard candy, sweetened cereals, lollipops, instant coffee, tea bags
  • Prepackaged foods such as MREs
  • Non-electric can opener
  • Keep a 72 hour emergency preparedness kit in your car
  • Keep a 72 hour emergency preparedness kit in your home
  • Consider keeping a kit near your desk at work

FIRST AID KIT-You should assemble a standard first aid kit for your home, for each individual 72 hour disaster preparedness kit and for each vehicle. These can be put together at home or purchased.
TOOLS and SUPPLIES-Flashlight and extra batteries, battery operated radio and extra batteries, shut off wrench for household gas and water, pliers, sanitation and personal hygiene supplies, small sewing kit, fire extinguisher, whistle, paper and pencil
CLOTHING and BEDDING-Include at least one complete change of clothing and footwear per person, sturdy shoes or work boots, rain gear/thermal underwear, blankets and/or sleeping bag, hat and gloves, sunglasses
PERSONAL VEHICLE-Gas tank full, tool box (which includes tow cable and jumper cables), extra oil and anti-freeze, emergency flares and distress flag/signal, flashlight and extra batteries, portable radio with extra batteries, traction devices, bag of sand and shovel, windshield scraper and brush, first aid kit with necessary prescriptions, blanket or sleeping bag, bottled water, canned fruit/nuts and non-electric can opener
SPECIAL ITEMS-Remember family members with special needs such as infants and elderly or disabled persons. Pack their kits accordingly. Include diapers and formula, or prescription medications. Keep important documents in a waterproof container. These documents might include insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds, wills, passports, social security cards, immunization records, bank account and credit card numbers, company contracts, an inventory of household goods, birth, marriage and death certificates, important telephone numbers, and copies of prescriptions. Have traveler’s checks, cash and change on hand. Extra medication, spare eyeglasses and anything else you think you might need.

This is your personal preparedness kit. Customize it to meet your individual needs. Don’t forget to plan for your pets, too!

Review kit contents every three to six months and update as needed. Rotate water, food, and medical supplies. Update important papers and emergency contact numbers.

For further information and for other information on special Emergency Preparedness topics, log onto these websites:

Red Cross website address: Red Cross
the FEMA website address FEMA

Q'alya Ta Kukwis Shichdii Me

Our Traditional Cultural Property (TCP) application to the National Register of Historic Places

“Our efforts are a response to the Tribal Constitution, which states that the Tribal Government is established to perpetuate our unique tribal identify and to promote and protect that identity. The resources we seek to protect through this listing are central to the Coos tribe’s identity.” -Chief Warren Brainard

The Constitution of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians states that our government was established in order to; perpetuate our unique identity and to promote and protect that identity, secure the rights and powers inherit to us as Indian people and as an Indian Tribe, preserve and promote our cultural, religious, and historical beliefs.
Our culture developed over thousands of years of living in a place. Thousands of years of observing, learning, and sustainably thriving in a place. A Traditional Cultural Property (TCP) designation recognizes the cultural significance and identity of a living community within that place. It recognizes the connection to this place and the resources that have been and still are used. It recognizes the value that it has to our Tribe and our culture and resources, additionally, it is a tool for protecting certain features important to our unique identity for future generations.

If you are a community member with questions please review this article, the SHPO website and the TCP-FAQ page and reach out to the Tribe if you have additional questions.

Photo credit Alex Derr httpswww.flickr.compeoplealex1derr

Q’alya Ta Kukwis Shichdii Me translates to Jordan Cove and the Bay of the Coos People. Jordan Cove is the central feature spatially in our TCP and representative of the hardship that we have overcome to be here today. We, as a Tribe, as a sovereign government, are exercising our rights to protect and preserve an area that has been of great significance to our way of life since time immemorial. The TCP boundary includes the expansive bay and its sloughs, inlets and adjacent uplands encompassing a 26- square mile area. These resolutions set forward in motion, the efforts of the Department of Natural Resources to seek the designation of Q’alya Ta Kukwis Shichdii Me, a Traditional Cultural Property Historic District.

Overview of TCP Boundary

The proposed district includes portions of private and public land in the cities of Coos Bay, North Bend and adjacent areas in Coos County. It contains over a hundred and fifty contributing features associated with the history, culture, and beliefs of the Coos People. A primary Tribal objective is to perpetuate the Tribes’ unique identity through preservation of Cultural Artifacts and sites of cultural, sacred, religious and historic significance. Ethnographies, anthropological studies and historic evidence confirm what our elders have taught us- that cultural, historic, and anthropological sites of significance to our Tribes are centered around the estuary.

Canoe pulls in the Heart of the Bay

'“A National Registry listing would require assessment of impacts to critical gathering and harvest areas" - Chairman Mark Ingersoll

The story of Jordan Cove is not dissimilar to other places of significance in the TCP, marked as important by the traditional cultural uses here. Additionally, our own family connections to places such as Jordan Cove, Barrett’s landing, family allotments, and our shared history, including the Treaty signing location. In this way, the Jordan Family and the places that have carried this name are part of our Tribal history. The Cove in addition to the other historic places in the TCP tell the story of our ancestors. How they endured as native people, in many cases, blended into Euro-American families for love and/or survival. Through their persistence and dedication to their coastal aboriginal homelands they helped preserve traditions and passed them on to a whole new generation of people. This new generation putting these teachings to good use in an area that was and is still very rich with natural resources.
Many of the bay’s features have been central to our traditional practices and our survival here throughout our forced removal after being rounded up in Empire in 1855. As a condition of our anticipated treaty and payment for their lands, the Coos had to leave their homelands. Only a few were allowed to stay, those who married white settlers. The Jordan family name is one associated with this time in our history and remains a name associated with our tribe and Coos Bay places, like Jordan Cove. When other Coos returned after nearly 20 years of broken promises, loss and hardship they found allotments or land that reflected their values.

“The Indians never lived at places hard to get into and inland, such as white people acquire. The Indians always wanted a place on the water, and preferred deep water.” -Lottie Evenoff

Pictured above: Lottie (Jackson) Evanoff, Coos Ethnographic Informant and Frank Drew, James Buchanan, and Eli Metcalf, Coos

The Coos people have continually utilized the Bay for fishing, gathering, ceremony, and where they are laid to rest. The area detailed within the nomination are not just a series of separate archaeological sites, but a constellation of interrelated cultural areas with generations of Tribal subsistence, ceremony, and use. On December 19th, 2018 the final draft of the Tribes Traditional Cultural Property (TCP) application was submitted to the State Historic Preservation Office. Additionally, we had previously (twice) nominated the Jordan Cove Area as a TCP. First on July 31, 2006 CTCLUSI passed Resolution No. 06-097 and again on July 29, 2015, CTCLUSI passed resolution number 15-049, nominating Jordan Cove and its surrounding areas to be a Site of Tribal Cultural and Religious Significance. Following that direction our Tribe spent the past few years researching tribal history and interviewing tribal members to better understand our relationship to this place over time. The boundary of the TCP slowly emerging from this work.
The redacted version of this document can be found at: https://www.oregon.gov/oprd/HCD/NATREG/Pages/Jordan-Cove-TCP.aspx This document is being shared in its redacted form. Publicly disclosing locations of villages, burials, archaeological sites, and ceremonial places puts those resources at risk. It is our job as a Tribal government to perpetuate our unique identity and to promote and protect that identity, secure the rights and powers inherit to us as Native people and as an Indian Tribe, preserve and promote our cultural, religious, and historical beliefs. With this document, we are further exercising our rights as a sovereign government and further perpetuating our mission.
Thank you to Patricia Phillips for all of her many contributions and the tribal members who participated in interviews. If you have knowledge or important places that you would like to protect please let our Cultural Resource Protection Program know or ask for an interview with us.
The State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation (SACHP) unanimously recommended on February 22, 2019 the submission of the Q'alya Ta Kukwís Shichdíí Me application to the National Park Service. Subsequently on May 23, 2019 the application was provided to federal landholders and has been submitted to the National Park Service by the State (see SHPO website )

TCP FAQ

Our Traditional Cultural Property (TCP) application to the National Register of Historic Places Frequently Asked Questions

Key Terms relevant to the Traditional Cultural Property Nomination

Cultural/Archaeological Resources: These can include plant gathering areas, shell middens, fish camps, sacred sites, fish weirs, and projectile points. Cultural resources can also be defined as physical evidence or place of past human activity: site, object, landscape, structure; or a site, structure, landscape, object or natural feature of significance to a group of people traditionally associated with it.

Archeological site: A place in which evidence of past activity is preserved and which has been, or may be, investigated using the discipline of archaeology and represents a part of the archaeological record. These include village sites, lithic scatter, shell middens, fish camps, and hearth features.

Contributing Features: Features that contribute to the significance of the property (associations with the cultural practices, traditions, beliefs, lifeways, arts, crafts, or social institutions of a living community). These features include cultural/archaeological resources, archaeological sites, and specific buildings owned by the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians.

Non-contributing Features: Features that do not contribute to the significance of the property. These include residential buildings, commercial buildings, sheds, driveways, garages, gardens, roads, etc. Additionally resources listed on private lands where gathering is not permitted are not contributing. Our application makes no attempt to include resources that are not important to contributing Coos beliefs, history or cultural practice.

Shell midden: Mound or lens (thinner deposit) formed mainly by refuse shell, fish bones, broken tools. Middens are closely associated with village sites, camps and processing areas.

Viewshed: A viewshed is an area that is visible from a specific location. In the case of our TCP, the water. Accordingly, significant impacts to this TCP viewshed would require very large-scale development along the shoreline that would materially alter the ability to recognize an entire landscape feature like a hill, stream, or inlet.

Questions and Answers about what makes Q'alya ta Kukwis scichdii me a Traditional Cultural Property

What makes Q'alya ta Kukwis shichdii me a Traditional Cultural Property?
A “Traditional Cultural Property” TCP is a property that is eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places (“NRHP”) based on its associations with the cultural practices, traditions, beliefs, lifeways, arts, crafts, or social institutions of a living community. Generally, TCPs are rooted in a traditional community’s history and are important in maintaining the continuing cultural identity of the community. It is important to understand that this is a nomination for recognition of the area as a TCP as opposed to other recognition under the National Historic Preservation Act. Coos Bay and the contributing features of our TCP are central to many Coos cultural practices and beliefs that are still practiced today.

If this nomination goes through, will I lose the rights to my property? Will I lose the ability to develop and make full use of my private property?
Absolutely not. A TCP designation primarily impacts federally approved or funded projects. That said, Oregon, Coos County, and local laws do require local government to prepare a cultural resource inventory and to protect archeological, historic and cultural resources within Coos Bay, even if those resources are located on private property.

If the National Park Service approves the TCP nomination, would my home be subject to the same limitations as Buildings that are on the National Register?
No because homes are considered non-contributing features of the TCP.

Is my home a Contributing Feature to the Tribe’s nomination?
Homes are not Contributing Features to the TCP.

Will my property be subject to extra state and local government regulations?
No. That said, existing Oregon law prohibits destruction of archaeological sites or objects. ORS 358.920 provides that a “person may not excavate, injure, destroy or alter an archaeological site or object or remove an archaeological object located on public or private lands in Oregon unless that activity is authorized by a permit issued under ORS 390.235.” Moreover, Coos County, the Cities of North Bend and Coos Bay have local requirements that require protection of archeological, historic and cultural resources within Coos Bay.

Must I apply for a permit with the Tribe to replace my roof, windows, siding or any other cosmetic changes to my home? When I want to make changes to my property, will I be required to give notice to the Tribe and will the Tribe be able to object to what I want to do to my property?
A TCP listing does not confer jurisdiction or property rights on the Tribe. Accordingly, no permits will be required from the Tribe. Independent from the TCP nomination process, under County laws the Tribe reviews local building permits within unincorporated Coos Bay to ensure impacts to archaeological, historic and cultural resources are minimized.

Will I have to disclose to potential buyers of my property that they are purchasing a “historic property”?
There would be no disclosure requirement for lands that fall within a TCP boundary. Additionally, it should be noted that currently Oregon and local law generally do not require sellers to disclose archaeological or cultural sites to buyers.

How do I find out if there are archaeological sites or objects on my property?
Contact the State Historic Preservation Office and/or the Tribe. The Tribe is willing to provide professional archaeologists to work with all landowners, at no cost.

Is this nomination bad for the local economy? Will this affect home prices in our area?
This designation will enhance, not detract from, our local economy. 1 Studies indicate that properties within historic districts appreciate at rates greater than the local market overall as well as faster than similar, non-designated neighborhoods. Moreover, analysis shows that historic districts are also less vulnerable to market volatility from interest rate fluctuations and economic downturns.

Why is the Tribe seeking to have Q'alya ta Kukwis shichdii me listed as a TCP?
To require that federal agencies consider impacts to Contributing Resources before engaging in activities or issuing permits for activities within the TCP boundary area. Much like the National Environmental Policy Act, a TCP listing does not compel a particular result, but instead requires federal agencies to make informed decisions regarding potential impacts to cultural resources. Over the years, the Tribe has been lost many first foods or resources important to perpetuating our cultural practices. The federal government has a responsibility honor their trust responsibility to tribes. The Tribe has been frustrated by the refusal of certain federal agencies to even consider impacts to these resources prior to issuing permits or authorizations.

Why now? Why is the Tribe trying to designate Coos Bay now, after all of this time?
Some have suggested that our TCP nomination effort is a response to the Jordan Cove LNG and Pacific Connector Pipeline projects (collectively the “Jordan Cove LNG Project”), but that is not the case. The TCP nomination efforts instead arise from our Tribal Constitution, which states that the Tribal Government is established to perpetuate our unique tribal identify and to promote and protect that identity. In light of our Constitutional obligations, we must think about all federally permitted projects within Coos Bay – and how they may impact resources important to our unique cultural identity. Moreover, the Tribe has a Cultural Resources Protection Agreement (“CRPA”) with the Jordan Cove Energy Project applicant – Pembina - and we are optimistic that compliance with this agreement will protect our Cultural Resources within Coos Bay.

Would the Tribe receive benefits from the Federal Government if the TCP nomination is approved?
No, except for the “benefit” of requiring federal agencies to consider impacts to TCP Contributing Features. However, a TCP listing for Coos Bay would open the door for local counties, cities, and others to receive planning and other grants related to the designation. For example, the National Park Services offers a number of TCP-related grants. The Tribe has indicated to its local government partners that it would welcome the opportunity to support any funding opportunities that would assist in the implementation of the TCP designation.

Have similar TCPs nominations been approved anywhere else to protect resources important to tribal cultural identity?
There are many TCPs across the Nation that recognize the importance of cultural history to Tribes, these include:

  • Bassett Grove Ceremonial Grounds, Oklahoma: The Grounds have been the site of specific ceremonies conducted by the Seneca and Cayuga Indians since 1832.
  • Kuchamaa (Tecate Peak), California: A sacred mountain associated with the Kumeyaay Indians. The mountain peak marks a significant location for the acquisition of knowledge and power by shamans and remains a site of important rituals and rites.
  • Nantucket Sound, Massachusetts: The Sound is an essential component of a larger traditional cultural landscape important to the ongoing practices, beliefs, and traditions of the Wampanoag tribes of Cape Cod. The TCP includes archeological and historic sites associated with the ongoing practices and traditions of the local tribes.

Why did the Tribe not have to submit this application to the Coos County Planning Committee for approval prior to submitting to SHPO?
The application is for designation under federal law – the National Historic Preservation Act. This requires review and approval by the National Park Service, not local government. However, the Tribe has met with local government and has offered to enter into Memorandum of Agreements (“MOAs”) to address any issues that may arise under state, Coos County or local law from listing the TCP on the National Register.

Is this nomination a way to streamline the process of becoming an officially recognized tribe by the federal government?
No. The Tribe is already a federally recognized tribal government. On October 17, 1984, as a result of a long moral, legal and legislative battle, President Ronald Reagan restored the Tribes to federal recognition by signing Public Law 98-481.

Why is the TCP necessary to the Tribe if Oregon Law-“Goal 5: Natural Resources, Scenic, and Historic Areas and Open Spaces”, as well as the Coos Bay Estuary Management Plan already exist within the bay to protect cultural and natural resources?
Goal 5 and other local and state cultural resource laws generally do not apply to actions by federal agencies. Designation of a TCP is governed by the National Historic Preservation Act, which requires federal agencies to consult with the Tribe when a Federal activity may affect a TCP. The law mandates consultation to determine impacts, but it does not mandate that an action not occur as a result of those impacts. At their discretion, federal agencies may develop and implement a preservation program for a TCP.

Does a TCP nomination empower the Tribe via the National Historic Preservation Act to instigate legal action against non-tribal members and public entities?
The National Historic Preservation Act would allow the Tribe to bring a legal action against a federal agency if it failed to consult about the impacts of its actions on the TCP, but it does not provide any right to file an action against any state or local government or individual. Moreover, the law mandates consultation occurs with the federal agency to determine impacts, but it does not mandate that an action not occur as a result of those impacts.

If the TCP is put on the register, what will be the impact to industrial, commercial & recreational use of the bay?
If a new industrial, commercial, or recreation use of the Bay requires federal approval or a federal permit, uses federal funds, or occurs on federal land, the federal agency involved must consult with the Tribe to determine impacts of the new proposal on the TCP, but it does not mandate that an action not occur as a result of those impacts. If no federal agencies are involved, there are existing local and state laws that are already in place regardless of the TCP that may apply. The Coos Bay Estuary Management Plan Policy # 18, which mandates “review of all development proposals involving a cultural, archaeological or historical site, to determine whether the project as proposed would protect the cultural, archaeological and historical values of the site.” Likewise, state law, ORS 358.920, already requires protection of archeological sites, stating that a “person may not excavate, injure, destroy or alter an archaeological site or object or remove an archaeological object located on public or private lands in Oregon unless that activity is authorized by a permit issued under ORS 390.235.”

Quotes from Tribal Council

CTCLUSI Leadership Quotes in response to questions from Jillian Ward, reporter for the World.
Mark Ingersoll, Chairman of the Tribal Council for the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Suislaw Indians (“CTCLUSI”).
Warren Brainard, CTCLUSI Chief.

“While we began preparing the application to place Jordan Cove on the National Register of Historic Places back in 2015. However, that decision was an outgrowth of prior Tribal Council resolutions enacted in 2006 and 2015, which designated the Jordan Cove area as a Traditional Cultural Property under the laws of the Tribe. In many ways, a National Registry listing would federalize this Tribal designation by making federal agencies consider impacts to cultural resources within Coos Bay prior to engaging in activities or issuing permits. It is important to point out that the Coos Bay Estuary Management Plan already requires the evaluation of impacts to cultural resources within Coos Bay prior to issuing local and county permits. In this sense, a National Registry designation would require federal agencies to do what private citizens and local governments have done since the Bay Estuary Management Plan was enacted in the early 80’s – consider impacts to cultural resources before issuing permits.” Chairman Mark Ingersoll

“We don’t think a National Registry listing for Coos Bay would affect our local businesses in Coos Bay beyond what we already do under the Coos Bay Estuary Management Plan. We are proud to be a part of a community that requires consideration of impacts to cultural and historic resources prior to engaging in activities that might impact those resources.” Chief Warren Brainard

“A National Registry listing would require assessment of impacts to critical gathering and harvest areas" Chairman Mark Ingersoll

“Our efforts are a response to the Tribal Constitution, which states that the Tribal Government is established to perpetuate our unique tribal identify and to promote and protect that identity. The resources we seek to protect through this listing are central to the Coos tribe’s identity.” Chief Warren Brainard

“As an example, back in 2016 when FERC denied the Jordan Cove application, we determined to continue on with our listing efforts, because this listing is about all federally permitted projects and federal activities within Coos Bay – not just the Jordan Cove LNG.” Chairman Mark Ingersoll

“We have a Cultural Resources Protection Agreement with Pembina, and we are optimistic that compliance with this agreement will protect our cultural resources within Coos Bay. At the same time, in light of our Constitutional obligations, we must think about all federally permitted projects within Coos Bay, which is why this listing effort is so important to us.” Chief Warren Brainard

NATURAL RESOURCE STAFF

Roselynn Lwenya, PhD

Director Natural Resources & Culture

541-435-7151 (Main)
rlwenya@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

Ashley Russell

Water Protection Specialist

541-888-7511 (Main)
arussell@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

Jesse Beers

Cultural Stewardship Manager

541-888-1319 (Main)
jbeers@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

Janet Niessner

Tribal Resource Response Specialist

541-888-1304 (Main)
jniessner@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

John Schaefer

Water Protection Specialist & Biologist

541-888-1303 (Main)
jschaefer@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

Colin Beck

Forester

541-888-7157 (Main)
541-261-3420 (Secondary)
cbeck@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue
Coos Bay, Oregon 97420

Courtney Krossman

Archaeology/ Ntlaxam Technician

541-888-9577 ex 7547 (Main)
ckrossman@ctclusi.org
1245 Fulton Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420

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