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Cultural Review



In order to protect the rich cultural heritage of Washington state, Governor Christine Gregoire signed Executive Order 05-05 (GEO 05-05). Recipients of state capital funds must consult with the Department of Archaeology & Historic Preservation (DAHP) and any Federally recognized Indian tribes that may have cultural and/or historic interest or concerns in the project's vicinity.

However, if your project, through federal involvement, will be subject to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, the GEO 05-05 requirement will be satisfied once the Section 106 process is complete.

Please remember that the GEO 05-05 process must be completed prior to the start of construction.

Process Administration

Barbara Smith is the Public Works Board's primary contact regarding the GEO 05-05 process. Copies of all correspondence and documents that are submitted to either DAHP or the Federally-recognized Indian tribes need to be sent to Barbara so that the process can be documented. Please send the materials by email to or by mail to:

Barbara Smith
Department of Commerce
Public Works Board
PO Box 42525
Olympia, WA  98504-2525

The GEO 05-05 process requires funding recipients to define the construction project area for potential impact including the identification of any building or structures 45 years old, or older, that are located within the project site. The funding recipient initiates contact with DAHP by submitting an EZ1 form to the State Archaeologist Rob Whitlam. For projects that plan to alter structures 45 years of age, or older, an online inventory survey must be completed. 

DAHP Consultation

DAHP can issue a broad range of responses to your submittal. A common response is a "No Effect Upon Cultural/Historic Properties" letter. If you receive such a letter, you have completed the DAHP portion of the review. Completion of the DAHP portion of the GEO 05-05 process does not complete the entire process. Consultation with any impacted tribes must occur.

If DAHP requires more information (completion of additional forms, cultural survey, inadvertent discovery plan, etc.) you must comply with the request. It is possible that you will need to hire a professional archaeologist. Once DAHP agrees with the additional materials provided, the DAHP portion of GEO 05-05 is complete.

Remember that DAHP's concurrence is only a portion of the process.  Tribal concurrence also needs to be obtained.

Tribal consultation is initiated by sending a letter and any project information describing the location and extent of the project to the potentially affected Federally-recognized Indian Tribe(s). The correspondence should be sent by your mayor, commission chair, or equivalent position to the Tribal Chair. Additionally, the letter needs to be copied to the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer or Cultural Resources Coordinator. Do not send the Tribes the EZ1 form! The Governor's Office of Indian Affairs maintains a directory that will assist you in identifying Tribal officials.

The Tribes must be allowed at least 30 business days to respond. Please incorporate additional time to account for the time it takes to correspond correspondence to reach each Tribe, and for the Tribes' correspondence to reach you. There may be no response, or there may be a wide range of responses to the information you've provided. As with DAHP, if additional materials are required, they must be provided to the Tribes and they must concur with the findings prior to the Board approving completion of the GEO 05-05 process.

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