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.
Final 2021 Statement
The City of Boulder extends its gratitude to 11 federally recognized American Indian Tribes who participated in a formal government-to-government consultation with the city on Wednesday, April 7, 2021. The city recognizes Tribal Representatives actively consult with many federal, state, and local agencies across the country. We appreciate their time in speaking with the city and for the opportunity to continue building relationships with Tribal Nations.
During the Wednesday, April 7 consultation, the city and Tribal Representatives continued discussions that began at a March 2019 consultation and were expected to continue at a 2020 consultation, which was postponed because of COVID-19. The city and Tribal Representatives agreed to:
- Rename Settler’s Park in west Boulder. The city anticipates informing the community about the agreed-upon name change when it submits an application for the formal name change in early May 2021. The city will invite Tribal Representatives to participate in a city/Tribal Nation working group to develop signage and education that commemorates Indigenous Peoples’ connection to the area.
- Continue progress on revising current city-tribal agreements this year. Once the city and Tribal Representatives reach a consensus on updates, the city plans to present a revised agreement to Tribal Governments for their review and possible acceptance.
- Meet again during a planned in-person formal consultation in March 2022.
The city also received feedback and guidance on Wednesday to develop a formal land acknowledgment. This effort has several goals, including:
- Honoring all Indigenous Peoples who have traversed, lived in and stewarded lands in the area since time immemorial.
- Emphasizing that traditions and oral histories still connect Tribal Nations and Indigenous Peoples with the Boulder area.
- Acknowledging the harm caused by the colonization of Indigenous lands.
- Celebrating the generational knowledge and wisdom of Indigenous Peoples.
- Building a foundation to take action for Indigenous Peoples now and into the future.
- Addressing the interests of Indigenous community members and federally recognized American Indian Tribes that consult with the city.
- Developing a consistent approach for land acknowledgments across the city.
City staff will work with the planned city/Tribal Nation working group to help finalize the city’s planned land acknowledgment. City staff anticipates providing the Boulder City Council an update about its land acknowledgment effort in late summer or early fall 2021.
The city thanks consultants Ernest House, Jr. with the Keystone Policy Center and Jessica Yaquinto with Living Heritage Anthropology for their continuing assistance in helping the city conduct government-to-government consultation with Tribal Nations.
The city knows it has much work ahead of it in listening and addressing matters of importance to Tribal Nations and Indigenous community members. The city again extends its gratitude for the opportunity to continue building relationships with Tribal Nations and for their guidance and partnership in the years to come.