As common with government-to-government consultations, the City of Boulder-Tribal consultations are typically closed sessions in order to facilitate conversations among city staff, Tribal Representatives and elected and appointed community leaders. Those conversations may include sensitive topics, such as the location of Native American cultural resources.
The city recognizes the public interest in citywide consultations with American Indian Tribes. City staff seek permission from Tribal Representatives to develop a joint city-tribal statement at the end of each consultation. City staff create these collaborative statements in partnership with Tribal Representatives. When the city hosts in-person consultations, there is also an effort to provide community members the opportunity to attend pre- and post consultation discussions, such as the opening and closing sessions.
2019 Final Statement
The City of Boulder is deeply appreciative of the opportunity to listen and learn from 14 American Indian Tribes who participated in a government-to-government consultation with the city on Tuesday, March 19, and Wednesday, March 20. This year’s consultation is a renewed effort to work with Tribal Nations that have signed four Memorandum of Understanding agreements with the city in the late 1990s and the early 2000s.
The City of Boulder thanks participating tribal representatives for this opportunity to re-establish relationships with the Tribes and for allowing the city to share topics that received city and tribal representative support during this 2019 winter consultation:
- Current agreements need to be updated and that the City of Boulder and Tribal Nations should meet in March 2020 to collaborate on suggested updates.
- A working group made up of city staff and one representative from each tribal nation should be established to help facilitate frequent consultations regarding agreement updates in advance of the 2020 March meeting. The tribes will attempt to designate representatives by April 20, 2019. There also was interest in inviting other Tribal Nations to participate in this ongoing conversation.
- The working group also will be charged with making a recommendation regarding the commemoration and recognition of federally recognized Native American Nations – including a potential new name for Settlers Park with appropriate commemoration and interpretation – which will be decided at the 2020 consultation.
The City of Boulder recognizes and appreciates that tribal representatives will need to have further discussion with their Tribal governments before any changes to the current agreements can occur. Any revised agreements between the City of Boulder and Native American governments will be available to the public once when they’re presented to Boulder City Council members for their approval.
The city would like to thank Holly Norton, the state’s archaeologist, along with Ernest House, Jr. with the Keystone Policy Center and Jessica Yaquinto with Living Heritage Anthropology, for helping the city to conduct this government-to-government consultation. The city also would like to thank community members for attending the public portions of this consultation and showing their support of American Indian Tribes and Indigenous Peoples in our community.
The City of Boulder again thanks Tribal representatives for sharing their insights and wisdom with city elected and appointed leaders and city staff, and the City of Boulder looks forward to continuing consultations and collaboration with federally recognized Native American Nations in the future.