According to Steve Adams, Associate Regional Director for the Midwest Regional office of the national Park Service, visiting staff from Midwest Regional Office in Omaha discovered the gap in documentation while conducting an operations evaluation at the park.
"When the team went over there they found a number of [compliance] issues with the National Historic Preservation Act and the National Environmental Policy Act,"Adams
said that regular procedure for a park that is considering a construction project is to complete a couple of preliminary assessment forms that would have guided park staff through all of the necessary steps and procedures, and would have assured communications with the Midwest Regional office and other agencies that must be consulted for construction projects.
It is unclear what steps in this process, if any, were undertaken by staff at Effigy Mounds
"It's pretty unusual for something like this to happen," Adams
also said that the actions taken at the park are also violations of federal law, but no legal action against the National Park Service
has been raised at this point.