DATE: December 13, 1995
TO: All Interested Parties
FROM: Nick Fielder, State Archaeologist [initialed]
SUBJECT: Revised Archaeologist Qualification for State Archaeological Permit Application

Enclosed are the revised qualifications for archaeologists applying for a permit to conduct archaeological investigations on state- owned or controlled land. These revised qualifications are the result of substantial discussion and review of qualifications previously issued by the office on June 12, 1995.

Several changes in the revised qualifications need to be noted. First, the revised qualifications are adapted from the existing federal Archaeological Resources Protection Act (ARPA) permit qualifications. Thus, minimum qualifications are presented for an archaeologist in general charge and archaeologist in direct charge of archaeological investigations on state-owned or controlled property. These designations replace the terms "Principal Investigator" and "Project Director" that were the subjects of debates.

Another substantial difference in the current qualifications is that permit applications will be examined on a project by project basis. Therefore no "list" of pre-approved archaeologists will be maintained by the Division. This change should insure that the skills and experience needed to conduct responsible archaeological resource management will be matched to the skills and experience of the archaeologist(s) conducting the work. The State Archaeologist will make all decisions on permit exemptions regarding personnel for specific projects.

A third important change is that all Request for Proposals (RFP) for Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) projects on state-owned lands will reference project-specific qualifications approved in advance by the State Archaeologist. Submitted proposals will be reviewed by the Division of Archaeology to determine if the archaeologist in general charge and archaeologist in direct charge meet the stated project requirements.

One aspect of the qualifications that did not change was the separation of qualifications necessary for prehistoric versus historic archaeological projects. The Division continues to maintain that specialized training and experience is necessary to adequately report on these different archaeological resources.

These revised qualifications will go into effect on March 1, 1996. Any questions should be directed to me or Mike Moore at (615) 741.1588.