What is Section 106?
Section 106 is a review process that is an integral component of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) of 1966. The review process requires federal agencies to identify and assess the effects that federal undertakings will have on significant historic resources. Federal undertakings can be projects or activities which are funded, permitted, licensed, or approved by any federal agency, and can take place either on or off federally owned or controlled property.
The process is overseen by the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), and it has lasting benefits because it relies heavily on public input from various consulting parties, including State Historic Preservation Offices, Tribal Historic Preservation Offices, state and local preservation and history organizations, and other interested or concerned individuals.
If it is determined that the federal project will have adverse effects on the historic resource, the federal agency must begin to explore ways– in consultation with the other parties– to prevent, minimize, or mitigate the adverse effects. This type of checks and balances system found within the Section 106 review process has helped prevent and mitigate the loss of many significant historic sites across the nation.
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