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RULE §26.25Memorandum of Understanding with Texas Department of Transportation

    (C) posting notices with local churches.

  (4) An exhumation project is itself not a type of investigation that requires an outreach effort or curation of materials at a state-certified facility.

(n) Archeological Sites and Cemeteries found after Award of Contract.

  (1) When potential historic properties are identified during implementation of a TxDOT project or unanticipated effects on historic properties are determined, work in the immediate area of the discovery shall cease, and TxDOT shall be notified of the discovery; if appropriate, security measures will be initiated to protect the discovery.

  (2) TxDOT will notify the THC within 48 hours of the discovery.

  (3) For unanticipated discoveries of archeological materials that do not contain human burials, TxDOT will undertake each of the following additional actions:

    (A) TxDOT will verify that the discovery does not contain human burials. As necessary, TxDOT will obtain and perform this investigation under an emergency permit or other appropriate Antiquities Permit category.

    (B) Upon confirmation that the discovery does not contain human burials, TxDOT may allow construction at the site to proceed.

    (C) TxDOT shall complete or update a State of Texas Archeological Site Data Form based on the available information.

    (D) TxDOT will find that the property comprises an archeological historic property.

    (E) TxDOT will develop a mitigation proposal to resolve the adverse effects of the undertaking on the archeological historic property. This proposal shall not necessarily involve any further excavations at the historic property.

    (F) The level of effort described in the proposal shall be commensurate with the nature of the resource, based on the available information.

    (G) TxDOT will develop the proposal in coordination with THC and obtain the appropriate Antiquities Permit for this work.

  (4) For unanticipated discoveries involving human burials, TxDOT shall follow the applicable requirements of the Health and Safety Code, Title 1, Section 711.

    (A) Work may resume in areas outside the boundaries of the cemetery.

    (B) Work may resume in a cemetery area if that cemetery has been removed in compliance with the applicable requirements of the Health and Safety Code, Title 1, Section 711.

(o) Standard Treatments for Particular Resource Types. Isolated wells or cisterns unassociated with other remains will be treated as follows:

  (1) Isolated wells or cisterns that post-date 1900 A.D. do not warrant notification of THC or additional investigation. Removal or sealing of these features does not constitute an adverse effect.

  (2) Isolated wells or cisterns that pre-date 1900 A.D. require research and documentation of their location, construction, condition, and original context. Upon completion of the research and documentation, these features may be backfilled and capped. These activities do not constitute an adverse effect.

(p) Artifact Recovery and Curation.

  (1) Artifact recovery.

    (A) Artifacts or analysis samples (such as soil samples) that are recovered from survey, testing, or data recovery investigations by TxDOT or their contracted agents that address the research questions must be cleaned, labeled, and processed in preparation for long-term curation unless the artifacts or samples are approved by THC for discard under this chapter and Chapter 29 of this title (relating to Management and Care of Artifacts and Collections).

    (B) To ensure proper care and curation, recovery methods must conform to the applicable requirements of this chapter and Chapter 29 of this title.

    (C) Artifacts recovered from underwater testing and data recovery projects require conservation as stated in §26.15 of this title and the conservation facility must be included in the permit application and data recovery plan.

  (2) Artifact curation.

    (A) TxDOT or its permitted contractor may temporarily house artifacts and samples during laboratory analysis and research, but upon completion of the analysis, artifacts and accompanying documentation must be transferred to a permanent curatorial facility in accordance with the terms of the antiquities permit.

    (B) Artifacts and samples will be placed at an appropriate artifact curatorial repository which fulfills the applicable requirements of Chapter 29 of this title, as approved by THC. When appropriate, TxDOT will consult with THC to identify for disposal collections or portions of collections that do not have identifiable value for future research or public interpretation. Final approval regarding the disposition of collections will be made by THC.

    (C) TxDOT is responsible for the curatorial preparation of all artifacts to be submitted for curation so that they are acceptable to the receiving curatorial repository and fulfill the applicable requirements of this chapter and Chapter 29 of this title, as approved by THC.

(q) Documentation for Archeological Sites and Cemeteries.

  (1) Projects subject to review for archeological sites and cemeteries under this MOU will be documented by TxDOT in the manner described in this section. Documentation in the project file for each such project will include, at a minimum:

    (A) a description of the project, defining the APE or the investigated portion of the APE in three dimensions;

    (B) a project location map, plotting the project location on 7.5' Series USGS quadrangle maps;

    (C) information regarding the setting that is relevant for the assessment of the integrity of any archeological sites within the APE;

    (D) information on previously-recorded archeological sites in the project location;

    (E) description and justification of the level of effort undertaken for the investigation; and

    (F) results and recommendations.

  (2) All TxDOT survey and testing reports will also include:

    (A) description and justification of field methods, including the sampling strategy;

    (B) description and quantification of any archeological materials identified;

    (C) accurate plotting of any sites found on 7.5' Series USGS quadrangle maps;

    (D) submission of electronic TexSite archeological site survey forms to the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory; and

    (E) recommendations regarding whether any site merits further investigation.

(r) Quarterly Reports for Archeological Sites and Cemeteries. Reports will be submitted by TxDOT to THC at least once per quarter, within 60 business days after the end of the calendar quarter. The report will list all projects for which TxDOT has documented that no historic properties and cemeteries are present in the project's area of potential effect, and those projects that will have no adverse effects on archeological historic properties and cemeteries.

(s) Public Outreach Regarding Archeological Sites and Cemeteries

  (1) TxDOT will conduct programmatic outreach in order to:

    (A) broaden understanding of Texas archeology and history and TxDOT's role in studying these topics;

    (B) capitalize on partnerships to reach more stakeholders and maximize outreach success;

    (C) create opportunities to do outreach using content from many different projects; and

    (D) use outreach to establish and maintain a link between TxDOT's public involvement and consultation efforts.

  (2) The outreach program will take the following forms:

    (A) TxDOT will develop and implement a communications plan;

    (B) TxDOT will increase stakeholder outreach by conducting studies of existing and potential audiences, sharing information and opportunities with partners, partnering with other agencies on educational and outreach activities, and participating in conferences and events to raise awareness of TxDOT's work;

    (C) TxDOT will create special projects or campaigns to support the goals of the program;

    (D) TxDOT will streamline public involvement by working with other internal offices to identify and engage with parties who may wish to engage in consultation on FHWA undertakings under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act; and

    (E) TxDOT will monitor the effectiveness of its efforts and make appropriate adjustments to achieve the outreach goals.

(t) Projects Excluded from Review for Non-Archeological Historic Properties.

  (1) For the purposes of this subsection, the term historic properties will refer only to non-archeological historic properties.

  (2) Based on previous coordination outcomes, TxDOT and THC agree that the following types of routine roadway projects pose limited potential to affect historic properties:

    (A) maintenance, repair, installation, or replacement, of transportation-related features, including fencing, signage, traffic signals, railroad warning devices, safety end treatments, cameras and intelligent highway system equipment, non-historic bridges, railroad crossings, lighting, curbs and gutters, safety barriers, ditches, storm drains, non-historic culverts, overpasses, channels, rip rap, and noise barriers;

    (B) maintenance and in-kind repair of designated historic bridges, picnic areas, rest areas, roadside parks, and culverts;

    (C) maintenance, repair, or replacement of roadway surfacing, including crack seal, overlay, milling, grooving, resurfacing, and restriping;

    (D) maintenance, repair, reconfiguration, or correction of roadway geometrics, including intersection improvements and driveway and street connections;

    (E) maintenance, repair, installation or modification of pedestrian and cycling-related features, including American with Disabilities Act ramps, trails, sidewalks, and bicycle and pedestrian lanes unless on historic properties protected as SAL, county courthouse, or by preservation easement or covenant.;

    (F) maintenance, repair, relocation, addition, or minor widening of roadway, highway, or freeway features, including turn bays, center turn lanes, shoulders, U-turn bays, right turn lanes, travel lanes, interchanges, medians, and ramps;

    (G) maintenance, repair, replacement, or relocation of features at crossings of irrigation canals, including bridges, new vehicle crossings, bank reshaping, pipeline and standpipe components, canal conversion to below-grade siphons, and utilities;

    (H) repairs needed as a result of an event, natural or man-made, which causes damage to a designated state highway, resulting in an imminent threat to life or property of the traveling public, or which substantially disrupts or may disrupt the orderly flow of traffic and commerce;

    (I) design changes for projects that have completed all applicable review and consultation where the new project elements comprise only one or more of the activities listed in paragraph (2) of this subsection; and

    (J) other kinds of undertakings jointly agreed to in writing by THC and TxDOT as not requiring review.

  (3) For projects described in paragraph (2)(A) - (J) of this subsection, TxDOT qualified professional staff shall determine whether additional evaluation is required due to direct effects to historic properties. If no such evaluation is deemed necessary, such projects are determined to pose no effect on historic properties and do not require review by THC under this chapter or under this MOU.

  (4) For review-exempt projects, documentation shall be limited to that maintained in TxDOT's project files. THC may audit TxDOT files for specific projects upon request.

(u) Procedures for Project Coordination when the Project Requires Review for Non-Archeological Historic Properties.

  (1) Historic properties. For the purposes of this subsection, the term historic properties will refer only to non-archeological historic properties.

  (2) Internal Review Projects. For projects subject to review for historic properties under this MOU, TxDOT qualified professional staff shall determine the presence or absence of historic properties in the area of potential effects. Such efforts should focus on the types of historic properties within public rights-of-way and other sensitive areas, including but not limited to historic bridges, historic road corridors, historic roadside parks and rest areas, historic Depression Era masonry culverts, historic districts, historic courthouse squares and other historic commercial zones. Project activities that TxDOT determines will have no effect or no adverse effect on historic properties may be internally reviewed by TxDOT and are approved for construction.

  (3) Coordinated Projects. If TxDOT qualified professional staff determines that a project requires individual coordination with THC for a courthouse review, easement review, or antiquities permit or due to a potential adverse effect on historic properties, TxDOT shall submit that project to THC:


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