The County of Los Angeles (County) is providing this status update on the remaining tasks for the historic cemetery area of the LA Plaza property.
In April 2012, following direction from the Secretary of the Interior to proceed with re-assembly and re-burial under California law, the County completed both the respectful re-assembly and the respectful re-interment of the human remains and associated materials at their site of origin in the historic cemetery next to the Plaza Church.
In May 2012, the County and LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes Foundation (Foundation) held a meeting with parties engaged in consultation to: meet Mr. Gustavo Herrera, the new Chief Operating Officer of the Foundation; to discuss incorporation of educational information about the historic cemetery and history of the site; to schedule of respectful ceremonies at the site; to discuss the delineation of the boundary of the historic cemetery; and ideas for a permanent and respectful memorial designed through consultation with parties engaged in consultation for placement at the site of the historic cemetery.
The consensus of the parties engaged in consultation was to schedule the respectful on-site ceremonies upon completion of the historic cemetery delineation. The historic consultant's field work to define the protected “No Dig” zone for the historic cemetery area has been completed, and the County and Foundation are communicating with Native Americans, Los Pobladores, and representatives of the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles, to schedule dates and times for appropriate ceremonies at the site.
As previously mentioned in prior updates, in June 2012, the County received the attached notice from the United States Department of the Interior regarding the Save America’s Treasures Grant. This letter states that after further investigating the issues regarding the discovery and subsequent removal of human remains at the LA Plaza site, they have concluded that the discovery was unconnected to the federal undertaking financed by the Save America’s Treasures Grant. In addition, the letter further states that National Park Service’s (and by extension, the County’s) obligations under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended, and its implementing regulations, “Protection of Historic Properties” (36 CFR Part 800), have been fully discharged with respect to the Save America’s Treasures Grant.
The County and Foundation are committed to fulfilling the remaining tasks for the historic cemetery area of the LA Plaza property. These tasks include:
1. an archaeological summary report that documents the methods and results pertaining to the discovery at the historic cemetery ;
2. a summary report documenting the delineation of a “no-dig zone” to protect the historic cemetery area;
3. a respectful memorial garden designed through consultation with parties engaged in consultation for placement at the site of the historic cemetery, enclosed by a permanent fence and including appropriate signage; and
4. a plan to ensure long-term protection of the historic cemetery area of the site.
In addition, the County and Foundation will be providing a clear explanation of the rules by which the historic cemetery and other resources on the campus will be managed, a suggested framework for complying with those rules, including requirements for archaeological and Native American monitors for any future construction, and for maintaining appropriate confidentiality of documentation.
If you have any questions or comments regarding the above information at the LA Plaza property, please contact me, Dawn McDivitt, at (213) 974-2620 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your continued participation in the ongoing process regarding the historic cemetery area.
Dawn McDivitt Manager,
Capital Projects Chief Executive Office,
County of Los Angeles