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BLM>California>What We Do>Cultural Resources>Use Permits
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Cultural Resource Use Permits for Archaeological & Paleontological Projects

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS 

What types of approvals will I need for my archaeological or paleontological project on BLM-administered lands?

The Bureau of Land Management issues the Cultural Resource Use Permit (CRUP) in order to authorize cultural resources studies for research, for compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), and for compliance with the Archeological Resources Protection Act (ARPA) and to authorize paleontological research. When specific projects are proposed, applicants who already possess a CRUP must also obtain a Fieldwork Authorization (FA) from the BLM Field Office where the fieldwork will take place. When a proposed project involves ground disturbing work at a prehistoric archeological site, an ARPA Permit must be approved before work begins. Other administrative questions are answered at the bottom of the page.

Who needs to apply for a Cultural Resource Use Permit?

Any individual or organization wanting to perform archeological or paleontological fieldwork, such as survey, excavation or site conservation, on any land administered by BLM California. Permits are issued to individuals and organizations that have the appropriate education, experience, and capability to perform professionally acceptable cultural resources studies.

How do I apply for a Cultural Resource Use Permit?

First, complete the downloadable form Cultural Resource Use Permit Application. Second, submit the form with a Curation Agreement from a curation facility that meets the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards (no exceptions), a Statement of Qualifications (SOQ), and resumes or curriculum vita for Principal Investigators and Supervisory Field Personnel (Crew Chiefs or Field Directors). Electronic submittals are accepted when the signature of the prospective permit administrator is included (pdf format is acceptable).

How long does it take to get a Cultural Resource Use Permit?

Your permit will be sent by email approximately 45 days after the BLM receives your completed application. Time constraints and workloads impact the State Archaeologist’s ability to respond in a timely manner so communicate special needs as soon as possible.

Where do I get a Cultural Resource Use Permit?

Download a Cultural Use Permit Application (Microsoft Word format)

Who needs to apply for a Fieldwork Authorization (FA)?

Any individual or organization wanting to perform specific archeological or paleontological fieldwork, such as survey, excavation, or site conservation, following the receipt of their approved CRUP. This form requests specific information on the location, schedule and nature of the archeological and/or paleontological fieldwork and allows the BLM to communicate specific constraints on a project type, schedule or location. An approved Fieldwork Authorization might notify permittees of seasonal road closures near the project area, advise them of potentially conflicting activities, such as game hunting near the project area, require permittees to avoid sensitive species habitat near the project area, and/or advise permittees on seasonal fire restrictions.

How do I apply for a Fieldwork Authorization (FA)?

Contact the Archeologist at the Field Office for the area in which the project will occur, then complete the downloadable form Fieldwork Authorization Request and submit it to the Field Office for approval. Electronic submittals are accepted when the signature of the permit administrator is included (pdf format is acceptable).

How long does it take it take to get a Field Use Authorization?

Allow a minimum of 30 days for receipt of your approved Fieldwork Authorization.

Where do I get a Field Use Authorization?

Download a Request for a Fieldwork Authorization form (Microsoft Word Template format)

Who needs to apply for an ARPA Permit?

Any individual or organization wanting to perform any archeological excavation beyond simple testing, on a known prehistoric site, must also apply for an ARPA Permit following the receipt of their approved CRUP.

How do I apply for an ARPA Permit?

First, complete the application steps for a CRUP. Second, provide a research design and plan of work for the research project. Electronic submittals are accepted when the signature of the prospective permit administrator is included (pdf format is acceptable).

How long does it take to get an ARPA Permit?

ARPA permits take longer because they require Tribal consultation prior to their issuance. Applicants for an ARPA permit should allow a minimum of 60 days for the permitting process.

Where do I get an Application for an ARPA Permit?

Download a Cultural Use Permit Application form (see above) (Microsoft Word format)

How long will the Permits and Fieldwork Authorizations be valid?

Cultural Resource Use Permits may be issued for any period up to two years. Typically, these permits are issued for the full two years. Fieldwork Authorizations and ARPA permits are issued for the time frame established in the plan of work.

When do Permits or Fieldwork Authorizations need to be modified?

Whenever there are deletions or additions in personnel from the original application, changes in personnel contact information, or changes in the type, schedule, or location of the proposed work.

How do I modify a Permit or Field Use Authorization?

Complete the downloadable form: Request for Modification of Cultural Resource Use Permit and submit it with supporting documentation. Electronic submittals are accepted when the signature of the permit administrator is included (pdf format is acceptable). This form may also be used to modify the Fieldwork Authorization and the ARPA Permit.

Download a Request for Modification form (Microsoft Word format)

What do I do when my CRUP expires?

All companies and individuals must reapply using the Application for a Cultural Resources Use Permit.

Who do I contact for more information?

For more information, contact Tony Overly 916-978-4684.

 Permit documents may be emailed to: soverly@blm.gov   or
 Permit documents may be mailed to:
 Tony Overly
 Cultural Resources
 Bureau of Land Management
 2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1928
 Sacramento, CA 95825