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Laws and Statutes

The Field Archaeology Act (Minnesota Statutes 138.31 - .42) officially established the position of State Archaeologist in 1963. Under state law, the State Archaeologist is an employee of the Minnesota Department of Administration and is not affiliated with the Minnesota Historical Society (MHS), although the State Archeologist leases office space from MHS at the Fort Snelling History Center. The Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) has two employees, the State Archaeologist, Amanda Gronhovd, and an assistant, Bruce Koenen.

The principal duties of the State Archaeologist are assigned by two state laws, the aforementioned Field Archaeology Act and the Private Cemeteries Act (MS 307.08). The State Archaeologist is given additional duties in rules implementing Minnesota Water Law (MS 103F) and the Minnesota Environmental Policy Act (MS 116D). The State Archaeologist is also named in the Coroner and Medical Examiner law (MS 390.25, Subd. 5). More recently, duties have been assigned to the State Archaeologist under the Minnesota Legacy Amendment Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund (MS 129D.17). The State Archaeologist also carries out traditional duties that have evolved since 1963 such as assigning official state site numbers.

The State Archaeologist has no official responsibilities with regard to federal agencies, federal lands, and federal laws. For the purposes of Indian consultation, the State Archaeologist is required to consult with the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council (MIAC) and not individual tribes.

The links below provide more information about how each of these laws direct the work of the State Archaeologist. Complete laws and statues may be referenced on the Minnesota State Legislature's webpage.

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