Over the past ten years, the CRD addressed all facets of the Reservation’s cultural resource management needs. During this period, the CRD was involved in projects that surveyed numerous sites, conducted outreach to on- and off-Reservation communities, worked with professional research groups, other Native American tribes, and provided full support of the Federal Preservation Mandate. Through these efforts, the Reservation is approximately 25% complete in its land survey of 2.2 million acres.
A strong in-house field program successfully conducted many small-scale inventories and evaluations of the Reservation’s cultural resources, eliminating a portion of the costly and inefficient process of hiring private cultural resource management firms to perform all cultural resource activities. The benefit of a strong in-house program is that cultural resource surveys and assessments can be performed quicker and cheaper than contracting the work to outside parties. The CRD frequently responds to small-scale project requests within a single day, eliminating delays in construction and/or training schedules. The CRD also handles the maintenance and storage of its artifact collections and records, a process for which volunteer labor from the traditional cultural community is utilized.
The program links its collections, site information and geographic information system (GIS) databases, allowing easy access to all available site information. Global positioning system site location data is downloaded directly to the GIS database. In addition, the program spearheaded by the MR&I Water Project to coordinate accurate information for multi-agency land managers. The result was a Reservation-wide cultural resource Geographic Information System. This system has developed into a Reservation historic resource database administered by the Tribes, now used by commercial developers who have interests on the Reservation.