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RULE §26.13Application for Archeological Permits

(a) Justification for investigation. Investigations undertaken on publicly owned cultural resources or to locate or discover such resources must be oriented toward solving a particular research problem, preparation of a site for public interpretation, or for the purpose of salvaging information and specimens from a site threatened with immediate destruction.

(b) Eligibility for application. Permits to conduct investigations of any nature on landmarks or for the discovery of potential landmarks, or on lands owned or controlled by agencies or political subdivisions of the state will be issued exclusively by the Commission under the conditions provided in the Antiquities Code of Texas and in this chapter.

  (1) Permits may be issued by the Commission to scientific and educational institutions, nonprofit corporations and organizations, investigative firms, and governmental agencies which have demonstrated their ability to carry out proper archeological investigations through their own staffs, including one or more professional archeologists who can serve as principal investigators, and who will supervise the project, or through a contract with a professional archeologist who can serve as a principal investigator. Permits may also be issued to individuals and private corporations who:

    (A) retain a professional archeologist who can serve as a principal investigator for the investigations, and can be in direct charge of the project from field investigation through preservation of collections and analysis of data to reporting of results; and

    (B) if required by the Commission or the terms or conditions of a Memorandum of Understanding, provide proof that adequate funds, equipment, facilities, and personnel are available to properly conduct the investigation as proposed to the Commission, and to report the results. The Commission may require a performance bond to be posted as part of the application process.

  (2) State or local archeological societies and archeological stewards wishing to conduct investigations on landmarks must have a principal investigator and be limited to non-compliance, investigation activities.

  (3) Principal investigators holding one or more defaulted permits are not eligible to be issued additional permits until all terms and conditions of defaulted permits are met.

  (4) Principal investigators and investigative firms that are currently censured due to permit application offenses are not eligible to be issued a permit. Once the censure period has lapsed the censured principal investigator or investigative firm will be eligible to be issued a permit.

  (5) No permits will be issued if the principal investigator and/or investigative firm cannot commit to direction of the permitted investigations by the principal investigator.

(c) Application for permit. Permit application forms may be obtained from the Commission. Any institution, corporation, organization, museum, investigative firm, or individual desiring a permit for investigations must file a completed application with the Commission prior to the proposed beginning date of the project. Special circumstances may require that a permit be issued on short notice when a site is threatened with immediate destruction. When a permit is issued for emergency salvage of a site threatened with destruction, the same rules apply as with all permits. The permit application must include:

  (1) a statement of the purpose of the investigation;

  (2) an outline of the proposed work and research design;

  (3) the proposed beginning date for the fieldwork and the length of time that will be devoted to the entire project;

  (4) name, address, and telephone number of the principal investigator, sponsor, and landowning or controlling agency;

  (5) an accurate plotting of the particular site or area to be investigated on a 7.5' USGS quadrangle map and locational data indicating the universal transverse mercator (UTM) coordinates;

  (6) the name of the facility where the specimens, material, and data will be kept during analysis of results of the investigation; and

  (7) evidence of adequate funds, personnel, equipment, and facilities to properly complete the proposed investigation.

(d) Research design. Research designs prepared prior to implementation of a field study and submitted with an Archeological Permit Application Form are essential to the success of scientific objectives, resource management decision-making, and project management. The following points should be considered during formulation of a research design.

  (1) Research designs present the essential objectives of a project or study and the means by which those objectives will be attained. As such, the research design is an efficient means of communicating with resource managers and the professional community at large.

  (2) The research design provides a logical basis for detailed project planning and assessment of resource significance.

  (3) Research designs may contain a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches. Similarly, research designs may address general research objectives, as well as more focused types of problem orientation. The following criteria shall be met.

    (A) Care should be taken to link the research design to existing topical and geographical bodies of data.

    (B) The nature of the resources under investigation should be considered.

    (C) The need to address a wide range of cultural and scientific resources should be considered.

    (D) Applied research that addresses cultural resource management and impact-related issues should be recognized as necessary and incorporated into research designs whenever possible.

    (E) The skills of the investigative personnel must be appropriate to the project goals and specifications in the research design. In many cases it may be desirable to include provisions for consultants with special expertise.

  (4) Research designs should not be conceived as rigid, unchanging plans. Although research designs may place relatively greater emphasis on certain kinds of scientific questions and certain kinds of data collection, as circumstances warrant, the investigator is not relieved of responsibility to recognize other research. Whether such alternative questions and data warrant changes in the ongoing investigation is a question that should be explicitly addressed and answered in the context of pertinent resource management objectives and research goals. It is expected that research designs will be modified as projects develop. A conscious effort should be made to modify research designs to exploit new information efficiently. It is to be expected that some research objectives will, for many reasons, prove less productive than anticipated, while other objectives will become more important than anticipated or perhaps materialize for the first time. The crucial objectives in the modification process are:

    (A) demonstrated progress in solving stated problems; and

    (B) subsequent modification of a research design on the basis of explicit, rational decisions intended to attain stated goals.

  (5) Research designs that anticipate encountering human remains must contain a detailed treatment and preservation plan developed in consultation with the Commission. Any analytical methodologies resulting in the destruction of human remains to obtain the maximum amount of scientific knowledge must be explicitly addressed in the research design for the Antiquities Permit or must be approved by the Commission with a permit amendment prior to initiation.

Source Note: The provisions of this §26.13 adopted to be effective May 20, 2013, 38 TexReg 2980; amended to be effective July 20, 2020, 45 TexReg 4967

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